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MY TAKE: Rising geopolitical tensions suggest a dire need for tighter cybersecurity in 2024

By Byron V. Acohido

Russia’s asymmetrical cyber-attacks have been a well-documented, rising global concern for most of the 2000s.

Related: Cybersecurity takeaways of 2023

I recently visited with Mihoko Matsubara, Chief Cybersecurity Strategist at NTT to discuss why this worry has climbed steadily over the past few years – and is likely to intensify in 2024.

The wider context is all too easy to overlook. Infamous cyber opsattributed to Russia-backed hackers fall into a pattern that’s worth noting:

Cyber attacks on Estonia (2007) Websites of Estonian banks, media outlets and government bodies get knocked down in a dispute over a Soviet-era war memorial.

Cyber attacks on Georgia (2008, 2019) Georgian government websites get defaced; thousands of

DEEP TECH NEWS: How ‘attribute-based encryption’ preserves privacy at a fined-grained level

By Byron V. Acohido

The ubiquity of smart surveillance systems has contributed greatly to public safety.

Related: Monetizing data lakes

Image capture devices embedded far and wide in public spaces help deter crime as well as aid first responders — but they also stir rising concerns about an individual’s right to privacy.

Enter attribute-based encryption (ABE) an advanced type of cryptography that’s now ready for prime time. I’ve had several discussions with scientists who’ve led the development of ABE over the past two decades.

Most recently, I had the chance to visit with Takashi Goto, Vice President, Strategy, and Fang Wu, Consultant, at NTT Research. We discussed how ABE is ready to help resolve some rather sticky privacy issues stemming from widespread digital surveillance – and also do much more.

For a full drill down on this leading-edge form of agile cryptography, please view the accompanying videocast. Here are my takeaways.

STEPS FORWARD: Regulators are on the move to set much needed IoT security rules of the road

By Byron V. Acohido

New government rules coupled with industry standards meant to give formal shape to the Internet of Things (IoT) are rapidly quickening around the globe.

Preserving privacy for a greater good

This is to be expected. After all, government mandates combined with industry standards are the twin towers of public safety. Without them the integrity of our food supplies, the efficacy of our transportation systems and reliability of our utilities would not be what they are.

When it comes to IoT, we must arrive at specific rules of the road if we are to tap into the full potential of smart cities, autonomous transportation and advanced healthcare.

In the absence of robust, universally implemented rules of the road, cybercriminals will continue to have the upper hand and wreak even more havoc than they now do. Threat actors all-too-readily compromise, disrupt and maliciously manipulate the comparatively simple IoT systems we havein operation today.

I had an eye-opening conversation about all of this with Steve Hanna, distinguished engineer at Infineon Technologies, a global semiconductor manufacturer based in Neubiberg, Germany. We went over how governments around the world are stepping up their efforts to impose IoT security legislation and regulations designed to keep users safe.

This is happening at the same time as tech industry consortiums are

RSAC Videocast: As network perimeters shift and ecosystems blend, the role of MSSPs solidifies

By Byron V. Acohido

Deepening interoperability of AI-infused systems – in our buildings, transportation grids, communications systems and medical equipment — portend amazing breakthroughs for humankind.

Related: The coming of optical infrastructure

But first businesses must come to grips with the quickening convergence of their internal and external computing resources. And that’s no small task.

I had the chance to discuss this with Shinichi Yokohama, NTT Global CISO and John Petrie, Counselor to the NTT Global CISO, at RSA Conference 2023. It was a rare opportunity to get the perspective of senior executives responsible for protecting a Fortune 100 global enterprise.

We discussed how the boundaries between in-company and out-of-company IT infrastructure have become increasingly blurred making network security more challenging than ever. For a full drill, please view the accompanying videocast. Here are a few takeaways:

A converged ecosystem

Cloud migration and rapid software development were both on a rising curve when Covid 19 hit and the global economy suddenly shut down in 2020. As companies adjusted in the post pandemic operating environment, Internet-centric services rose to the fore.

This accelerated the convergence of on-premises and cloud-hosted IT infrastructure. Today, data storage and processing power are prominently

MY TAKE: ‘IOWN’ makes the business case for fostering diversity, respecting individual privacy

By Byron V. Acohido

To tap the full potential of massively interconnected, fully interoperable digital systems we must solve privacy and cybersecurity, to be sure.

Preserving privacy for a greater good

But there’s yet another towering technology mountain to climb: we must also overcome the limitations of Moore’s Law.

After 30 years, we’ve reached the end of Moore’s Law, which states that the number of transistors on a silicon-based semiconductor chip doubles approximately every 18 months. In short, the mighty integrated circuit is maxed out.

Last spring, I attended NTT Research’s Upgrade 2023 conference in San Francisco and heard presentations by scientists and innovators working on what’s coming next.

I learned how a who’s who list of big tech companies, academic institutions and government agencies are hustling to, in essence,

MY TAKE: The role of semiconductors in bringing the ‘Internet of Everything’ into full fruition

By Byron V. Acohido

The Internet of Everything (IoE) is on the near horizon.

Related: Raising the bar for smart homes

Our reliance on artificially intelligent software is deepening, signaling an era, just ahead, of great leaps forward for humankind.

We would not be at this juncture without corresponding advances on the hardware side of the house. For instance, very visibly over the past decade, Internet of Things (IoT) computing devices and sensors have become embedded everywhere.

Not as noticeably, but perhaps even more crucially, big advances have been made in semiconductors, the chips that route electrical current in everything from our phones and laptops to automobile components and industrial plant controls.

I recently visited with Thomas Rosteck, Division President of Connected Secure Systems (CSS) at Infineon Technologies, a global semiconductor manufacturer based in Neubiberg, Germany. We discussed how the Internet of Things, to date, has been all about enabling humans to leverage smart devices for personal convenience.

“What has changed in just the past year is that things are now starting to talk to other things,” Rosteck observes. “Smart devices and IoT systems are beginning to interconnect with each other and this is only going to continue.”

MY TAKE: Why the Matter smart home standard portends the coming of the Internet of Everything

By Byron V. Acohido

Standards. Where would we be without them?

Universally accepted protocols give us confidence that our buildings, utilities, vehicles, food and medicines are uniformly safe and trustworthy. At this moment, we’re in dire need of implementing standards designed to make digital services as private and secure as they need to be.

Related: How matter addresses vulnerabilities of smart home devices

A breakthrough is about to happen with the roll out this fall of Matter, a new home automation connectivity standard backed by Amazon, Apple, Google, Comcast and others.

Matter is intended to be the lingua franca for the Internet of Things. It’s only a first step and there’s a long way to go. That said, Matter is an important stake in the ground. To get a full grasp on why Matter matters, I recently visited with Steve Hanna, distinguished engineer at Infineon Technologies, a global semiconductor manufacturer based in Neubiberg, Germany.

For a full drill down on our evocative discussion, please watch the accompanying videocast. Here are the main takeaways: