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Using the blockchain to create secure backups

“Oh no! I’ve got a ransomware notice on my workstation. How did this happen?” “Let’s figure that out later. First, apply the backup from a few minutes ago, so we can continue to work.” Now that wasn’t so painful, was it? Having a rollback solution or a recent backup could make this ideal post ransomware–infection scenario possible. But which technology could make this work? And is it … [Read more...]

The 25th anniversary of the webcam: What did it bring us?

How did the webcam progress from a simple convenience to a worldwide security concern in 25 years? November 2018 can be marked as the 25th anniversary of the webcam. This is a bit of an arbitrary choice, but if we consider a webcam that was installed at the University of Cambridge to keep an eye on the coffee level in the shared coffeemaker as the first one, then it’s been 25 years already. And … [Read more...]

Are Deepfakes coming to a scam near you?

Your boss contacts you over Skype. You see her face and hear her voice, asking you to transfer a considerable amount of money to a firm you’ve never ever heard of. Would you ask for written confirmation of her orders? Or would you simply follow through on her instructions? I would certainly be taken aback by such a request, but then again, this is not anywhere near a normal transaction for … [Read more...]

Advanced tools: Process Hacker

Process Hacker is a very valuable tool for advanced users. It can help them to troubleshoot problems or learn more about specific processes that are running on a certain system. It can help identify malicious processes and tell us more about what they are trying to do. Background information Process Hacker is an open source project and the latest version can be downloaded from here. The site also … [Read more...]

Is FIDO the future instrument to prove our identity?

FIDO, short for Fast IDentity Online, is an industry consortium started in 2013 to address the lack of interoperability among strong authentication devices and the problems users face creating and remembering multiple usernames and passwords. Among the founders were those who work in the financial sector, device manufacturers, and providers of authentication solutions. What is FIDO? According to … [Read more...]

How to build your own motion-activated security camera

Attention makers! Are you looking for a challenging project that not only gets your gears grinding but helps to keep you secure while traveling? Welcome to the build-your-own security camera tutorial. The impetus for this project originated from events that took place at Defcon 26, where hotel security staff inspected attendee rooms while not properly identifying themselves. Gross overreach. … [Read more...]

Bring your own security (BYOS): good idea or not?

We’ve talked about the concept of Bring Your Own Device, or BYOD, on the blog before. BYOD is a popular policy whereby employees can bring personally-owned devices, such as laptops, tablets, or smartphones, to work and use them to access data and applications. It helps to cut costs and can increase productivity, but it brings with it many security concerns and implications. Similar in theory … [Read more...]

Safari users: Where did your extensions go?

Safari 12 has brought with it some changes to how OSX handles browser extensions. At WWDC in June, Apple announced that Safari would block legacy extensions installed from outside the Extensions Gallery, which itself would now be deprecated. As a replacement, Safari will now rely on “app extensions.” Apple said that app extensions don’t see any browsing details, are more … [Read more...]

Assessing the security of a portable router: a look inside its hardware

Network administrators should perform security assessments of hardware that they will provide their users, or particularly paranoid users might want to poke at their devices just to be extra sure. In this blog post, we will demonstrate the techniques used to assess security on a generic portable router purchased online. We have redacted its identifiable information as our goal here isn’t to … [Read more...]

Explained: regular expression (regex)

Regular expression, or “regex” for short, is a mathematical term for the theory used to describe regular languages. But in computing, regexes are used to search for patterns in files and databases, and their functionality is incorporated into many modern programming languages. Regex search patterns make wildcards look like clumsy clowns because they offer a whole slew of additional … [Read more...]