My week of Monday 9 to Sunday 15 September 2019 was spent in Chiang Mai, mostly covering the APNIC 48 conference, but also spending some of my own time looking around the city. I like it.Continue reading “Weekly Wrap 485: Cybers in Chiang Mai, and such”
- No Russian interference yet in US midterm elections: FireEye, ZDNet Australia, 4 October 2018. Interesting analysis. The first of three stories from the FireEye Cyber Defense Summit.
- America the ‘indispensable nation’ for cybersecurity: Madeleine Albright, ZDNet Australia, 4 October 2018.
- North Korea is the most destructive cyber threat right now: FireEye, ZDNet Australia, 5 October 2018. The key word here is “destructive”. When discovered, the DPRK hackers tent to trash everything in sight.
- My Health Record justifications ‘kind of lame’: Godwin, ZDNet Australia, 10 October 2018.
- UK’s NCSC to monitor internet routing to stop DDoS and hijacks, ZDNet Australia, 12 October 2018. An update on the NCSC’s impressive Active Cyber Defence work.
None published. But as well as the long conversation with Nicholas Fryer that we recorded in Adelaide two weeks ago, in DC I recorded a long interview with the remarkable Mike Godwin, creator of Godwin’s Law amongst many other things. Both of those podcasts will be posted some time in the coming week.
None, which is unusual.
- My flights to the US and the related accommodation were covered by FireEye.
- At the Australian Cyber Conference on 10–11 October there was plenty of food and drink, courtesy of the Australian Information Security Association (AISA) and their sponsors. AusCERT: A branded SyncStop “USB Condom” to protect my devices while charging from random USB ports; Tenable: a copy of Cyber Exposure for Dummies; ThreatQuotient: A stress rhinoceros, leading Benno Rice to coin the euphemism “Squeezing the rhino”; Tripwire: Three t-shirts bearing the slogan “I didn’t start the fire”; Yubico: A YubiKey NEO authentication device.
The Week Ahead
On Monday, I’m back in Sydney, where I’ll be dealing with a couple of medical things, sorting through my notes and pitching some stories, and ending the day with some social life, before taking the train back to Wentworth Falls.
Tuesday through Thursday will be about writing for ZDNet and editing podcasts. I’ll plan that out as I go.
Friday is another Sydney day, with the usual mix of medical and work appointments, plus whatever remains to be done. I’m looking forward to having a lazy weekend.
The following week I’m spending a bunch of time in Sydney covering the Sibos global financial services conference on 22–25 October. That’ll keep me pretty busy, so Friday through Sunday will be more laid-back.
- McAfee MPOWER Cyber Security Summit, Sydney, 30 October.
- International Association of Privacy Professionals ANZ (iappANZ) Annual Summit, Privacy: Handling the Seismic Shift, Melbourne, 1 November. (Tentative)
[Photo: The White House. You know what this is. Photographed on the foggy Sunday morning of 7 October 2018.]
- “The 9pm Probe: Dr Alice Gorman, space archaeologist”, being The 9pm Edict episode 76. You can also listen to it on SoundCloud and Spreaker. This is the pilot episode of what I hope will become a regular addition to The 9pm Edict cycle, a series of long-form interviews with interesting people. Please let me know what you think.
- Security training is useless unless it changes behaviours, ZDNet Australia, 3 April 2018.
- 188.8.131.52: Cloudflare’s new DNS attracting ‘gigabits per second’ of rubbish, ZDNet Australia, 4 April 2018.
- On Thursday I spoke about Cambridge Analytica’s use of Facebook data on ABC Radio’s The World Today.
The Week Ahead
It’s going to be a big one. On Monday morning I’m heading down to Sydney, where I’ll do some important preparations, like getting a haircut. I’ll also be continuing with the research on that SEKRIT editorial project. I’ll be able to tell you about that eventually, but not just yet.
On Tuesday I’m taking the 1201 train to Canberra, doing a bunch of stuff en route. That evening, I’m covering a panel discussion at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), Stopping a Cyber Threat on Our Election: US and Australian Experiences. Should be interesting.
On Wednesday and Thursday, I’m covering the Australian Cyber Security Centre (ACSC) Conference, so on Friday I reckon I’ll still be writing about that. There’s usually a bunch of stories.
I’ll stay in Canberra until late Saturday afternoon, and have a lazy day in Sydney on Sunday.
[Photo: Cricket! A large and, I think, female cricket found at Bunjaree Cottages near Wentworth Falls on 2 April 2018.]
Friday 22 September was the hottest September day ever recorded in Sydney and across much of NSW. That night, at least up here in the Blue Mountains, the overnight minimum was so far above average that it was a degree warmer than the average maximum for that day.
The planet is not broken.
- “The 9pm End of the World, But More So”, being The 9pm Edict episode 68, was finally produced on Thursday night. You can also listen to it on SoundCloud and Spreaker. Be warned, the pace of the news cycle means that some of it has already been overtaken by events.
- APNIC-sponsored proposal could vastly improve DNS resilience against DDoS, ZDNet Australia, 18 September 2017.
I’ve also part-written a piece for ZDNet that’ll appear on Monday.
Corporate Largesse, Media Appearances
None, but that changes next week.
The Week Ahead
Monday sees me on a day trip to Sydney for routine back maintenance. Beforehand, I’ll finish a yarn for ZDNet. En route and afterwards, I’ll work on my presentation for Wednesday night.
On Tuesday, I’ll catch an early train to Sydney to cover the first day of SINET61, the second annual joint conference of the Security Innovation Network and Australia’s Data61. I’ll stay in Sydney overnight.
On Wednesday, I’m flying down to Melbourne. That evening I’m speaking at Digital Manipulation of Democracy, part of the Victorian Fabians’ Spring Series of events on “Digitisation and Democracy”.
I’m staying in Melbourne through to Saturday afternoon.
On Thursday evening, I’m talking about cybers or tech or something on ABC Melbourne. That’s probably at 1930 AEST, but check Twitter on the day. The rest is unplanned, but I’ll think of something. Or you will.
Events I’m covering or speaking at include:
- The iappANZ Summit 2017, Sydney, 3 October.
- The Australian Information Security Association (AISA), Sydney, 10–12 October.
- Ruxcon, Melbourne, 21–22 October.
If there’s anything I should add in there, please let me know.
Update 28 September: Edited to reflect cancellation of ABC Melbourne spot.
[Photo: Laneway Girl. A mural outside a nightclub on Earl Street in Sydney’s Kings Cross, photographed on 9 September 2017.]
The Christmas Day attacks on Sony’s PlayStation Network and Microsoft’s Xbox and the supposed culprits, Lizard Squad, featured in this week’s “Tech Wreck” segment on ABC 720 Perth. Also, fake fingerprints and Facebook’s end of year review.
Lizard Squad had claimed responsibility for the attacks, and stopped them when Kim Dotcom paid them off. I reckon that was a mistake. Meanwhile, infosec journalist Brian Krebs thinks he’s identified Lizard Squad members, and later reported that at least one has been arrested.
A hacker presenting at the Chaos Computer Club conference in Germany demonstrated how he could recreate a fingerprint just from photographs.
And the Facebook thing? Just read this guy’s story.
The presenter is Jamie Burnett.
I’ve delayed posting this audio because there was a problem. I normally record off the ABC’s internet feed, but the link dropped out part-way. Journalist Will Ockenden was kind enough to pull the audio from the ABC’s archiving system, but that was interrupted by bushfire alerts. What to do?
I decided I’d post it as-is, because this is what Perth listeners would have heard, and it highlights just how serious Australia has to get during our hot, dangerous summers.
The next “Tech Wreck” segment is on ABC 720 Perth this Tuesday 6 January 2015 at 1430 AWST / 173 AEDT.
The audio is ©2014 Australian Broadcasting Corporation.
Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks are cheap and easy to do. It’s just a matter of overwhelming the target site with a flood of internet traffic. According to Michael Smith, head of Akamai Technologies’ computer security incident response team (CSIRT), such attacks will only get worse as we roll out faster broadband infrastructure.
“That increases the amount of bandwidth available to the home, but that also increases that amount of bandwidth that a bunch of computers at the home can throw at a target site,” Smith says.
That’s not the only reason that DDoS is becoming more challenging to defend against — but you’ll need to click through to the podcast to hear why.