Co-Founder, Marc Maiffret is back as CTO of eEye. The CyberHood Watch partners, Dave & Bill, talked about the value of Marc’s new perspective that he is bringing back to eEye after several years of contributing to the industry elsewhere.
Marc understands that modern societies will become increasingly dependent on technology, not just as something nice to have, but as a foundation for a way of life. However, along with the technology dependency, people like Marc who understand the vulnerabilities individuals and societies are facing, are the defenders of our personal and national security. Personal, corporate, national, and international entities are all subject to cyber threats, exposing our children, families, and businesses while making them vulnerable to the digital threats from cybercriminals.
The truth is we have no choice…The Internet is here and it is so much a part of our daily lives that there is no disconnect, plug to pull, or switch to turn it off. The CyberHood Watch appreciates individuals like Marc who are tireless defenders of our cyber security.
We have laid the golden egg…The Internet. Unfortunately, everyone and every entity connected to the Internet are its treasures and valuable resources. Each entity connected to the Internet provides nefarious organizations potential access to personal information, and financial wealth. In addition there are many who are concerned about the security of the nation form those who seek world domination or the destruction of nations.
Too often, I have stated as well as heard, “we are always a step and a half behind the hacker”. Good news, according to Marc, understanding the aspects of the life cycle of attacks, allows us to get a jump ahead of the bad guys. The nefarious entities are all scrambling to find the vulnerabilities in the systems or a way to socially engineer individuals to trigger a behavioral response. However, if we focus on the basic commonalities in penetrating a system, and find it first, we have a chance of staying ahead of the hackers allowing Marc, to patch and deny access to hackers with bad intentions. One thing is for sure; it is a never ending battle 24/7, 365 days a year. As Marc said, “It is a continuous sprint with no finish line in sight”.
Thank you Marc Maiffret, as well as all our guests we have had on CHWradio who strive to make the digital age safe for all children, families, and businesses.
Marc loves the intellectual challenge and matching wits with the nefarious hackers. However; be mindful there are the counterparts to Marc, who are well funded by criminal organizations, racing Marc to discover the same vulnerabilities in the system.
Graham Cluley, from Sophos, raised the question in his blog post about hiring hackers who have turned good, one of whom was appointed to Homeland Security. The concern is we might be sending a message of approval for individuals, in order to obtain a position of importance; you have to become a notable hacker of the system to prove your worthiness.
The concern is we are approving the negative behavior of hackers to catch a hacker, likened to hiring a notorious bank robber to guard the bank. Probably the reason, as Marc pointed out, that large reputable companies shy away from public association with their employed white hat hackers…It takes one to one.
Here is a tip from Marc regarding new types of hacks currently occurring, and that is if you maintain a balance on your iTunes account or similar account – Don’t, hackers have recently penetrated iTunes, and are draining those accounts balances.
Some believe it is dramatic and too much of a noble claim when you say you are fighting for a way of life. Consider how technology is becoming embedded in our lives, automobiles, smart grid, smart phones, etc., and you begin to understand how individuals like Marc are fighting for our way of life. Be sure to listen to Marc’s story about penetrating a water plant and the implications that presents to all our municipality’s safety.
Be sure to download the entire interview, Marc shares a great deal of insight to what is necessary to maintain a safe presence in the digital age. Moreover, the landscape has changed and what were simple recommendations to stay safe (and still applicable) on the Internet have been expanded to identify the risks you have no control over.
Allow me to leave you with this thought from Marc regarding the “The Explosion”. The explosion is when the access and the data come together for the smart phone, and it becomes the complete replacement for the wallet. The smart phone replaces your driver’s license, replaces your credit card, ID card, payment options, etc. When this happens, it all becomes very worthwhile for the hacker. A previous guest, Winn Schwartau, sees it as the “perfect storm” in 2013, when there will be approximately four billion connections to the Internet, the majority of which will be the smart phone, and in the hands of children.
david c ballard