What are the top 5 thoughts to keep in mind?

I was watching Feynman videos and saw this unique   list (10 times Feynman blew our minds) that has insight into what we should focus in Cybersecurity as well.

I wanted to distill this video into 5 top items and relate them to Cybersecurity.

#5 Asking How Things Work Can Start You on a path of discovery (the definition of a hacker), and keep asking how, make experiments etc.

#4 History is fundamentally irrelevant when trying to solve new problem. As the new problem will not have an old method solution. (Of course Feynman assumes you DO know the methods of the past). This is akin to TTP Tactics,Techniques, and Procedures in Cybersecurity.  We as humans tend to let our history guide our future, but if we want to solve new problems, we need to have new solutions.  In this arena we do not need history (fundamentals still need to be known).

#3 In trying to learn about the world, ask questions and doubt. Can you live with doubt and approximations? Not everything learned is exact. In cybersecurity there are many areas that we do not know – for example: ” How will the next attack come into our environment?” . Can you live with this knowledge? We have to learn how to perform risk management with an incomplete picture

#2 Naming things(xyz) does not give you knowledge (it allows you to talk to others about xyz). Fundamental knowledge is not about the name. Also analogies are also bad as they can mean different things to different people.

#1 Know that you don’t know – and what it is you don’t know (basic tenet of blue team defense).

As Rumsfeld has been known to say “There are known knowns and known unknowns” Things that you think you know that it turns out you did not.

 

With these 5 tenets we can develop Cybersecurity top5 tenets:

  1. Known unknowns – Keep searching for new methods to learn environment in new ways.
  2. Explain methods and reasons without technical jargon
  3. Always review your environment with a level of uncertainty
  4. Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures cause a certain mindset to develop, one must still try to think out of box to see the attacker’s viewpoint.
  5. Asking how things work is good beginning. And eventually it can build into being a subject matter expert.

 

The Weak Link Gets Stressed

I’m always looking for more attack angles into the network.

What is the weakest link?

To know the answer to the question we need to investigate what Risk = likelihood * impact is in our organization.

It is more exciting to talk about higher productivity, faster computers, and sales of product xyz.  But a weak link has to be monitored or it can become a disaster of your own doing.   The Internet has improved productivity (and made us social media hogs) but also has allowed our computer environment to be affected by all the Criminal people of the world.

I have mentioned this in the last couple of posts, but Small business does not seem to get the message.

There are so many things to do in a small business just to stay afloat or to grow, that working on a backup strategy is just not important. How does a backup help sell product “xyz”?

It may not help selling or operating a business, but when an IT failure occurs will it be an annoyance – “recover the data please”? Or will it be a disaster and then we have to say things like… the computers are not operating right now… we are working using the old paper based methods. A few years from now this will not work, as Credit cards increasingly need a network to operate.

Getting the following message might make you pay the ransom, thinking you will have solved the problem ‘on the cheap’

But if it happened once, it will happen again. You better fix this issue of management willpower. 60% of small businesses fail within 6 months of a Ransomware attack. There is a reason for this phenomena.  The weak link is the ignorance of the problem.

As you can see the sophistication of criminals will get to the point that they will charge more for Ransoming your own devices back to you.  If management does not have the willpower to create the processes of sophistication to defeat digital Criminals (and major disasters). Then it will only be a matter of time and circumstances when the hole dug is going to be too deep.

Thus my conclusion is that the true “Weak Link” is management thinking itself. A minimal amount of time could be spent on defensive preparations, like 10% which I have recommended before: http://oversitesentry.com/what-is-your-budget-in-preventing-unforeseen-attacks/

Contact Me to discuss this phenomena.

 

Cyberjoke Friday v1.99 Easter 2017 Edition

image from Small Business Trends online site

Yes on Holidays I like to do things that are not done weekly or monthly – like backups, and shred old documents etc.

And now for the jokes:

An Attempt by ESPI Blog to explain Easter Eggs (software) with 1st Easter Egg:

Some Easter eggs are hidden, so are very well hidden, and then there’s the Video Whizball Easter egg. Now considered the first software Easter egg ever, the hidden name of the game programmer was not found for 26 years after the game’s initial release in 1978. While the Easter egg is rather minor, simply a printout of the programmer’s family name, it is noteworthy as it is, as the earliest instance of a hidden feature in software. Of course, there could be others in earlier software, so get out there and find them!

 

Look for some Easter eggs on Google – search for ‘anagram’  (it will say Did you mean ‘nag a ram’?  Mediaite post from 2010 on the anagram Google Joke

 

Unfortunately the real joke is on us the clients of small businesses:

And now you know why 60% of small business(KnowBe4) hacked is out of business within six months.

If you want to make a change in your Cybersecurity contact Us

Why Spend Time On Cybersecurity?

Security does not add value to the company, people, or product.  Why is Cybersecurity important?

As our lives become more connected (not less). Our communications are on the Internet, our phone conversations are on the Internet, our devices that we keep on us and we depend on for business and pleasure have to connect to the Internet.

This video is an attempt at explaining this complex subject:

https://www.youtube.com/edit?o=U&video_id=QNLB185u9Nw

If we connect to the Internet the problem is that we are also connected to all the digital criminals in the world. Ransomware can destroy our data and even ruin our businesses (40% of businesses were hit by Ransomware and 20% were forced to shut down).

The problem with these digital criminal software makers is that like all software it does not act like it is supposed to. So sometimes when your data is encrypted  and lost, it may not get decrypted even if you pay them.

So the issue is if we do not pay any attention to Cybersecurity then eventually you will bump into the frailty of our digital lives. The simple truth is that the people who do not pay attention may not know they may go out of business if hit with a catastrophic Cybersecurity event.   We are used to watching the news and in our connected world we see a storm coming where the storm is going to potentially destroy our buildings etc.  But in Cybersecurity everything is below the radar, there is even a “Darknet” where the Digital criminal sells your information they stole.

Didyou know that you are playing Cybersecurity Russian Roulette? Do you have a 500Barrel Gun or a 1000barrel gun?

What is you risk level? Tells what size your Russian Roulette gun is.

Well we have to find out what kind of software you have…  and the vulnerabilities they have.

Attack timeline vulnerabilities tell the story of how the criminal gets into your systems and inserts Ransomware.

What can be done? Patch your devices, learn how to perform risk management with all digital devices.

You are playing Cybersecurity roulette whether you know it or not.

I know Cybersecurity is not simple, but you must start working on tackling it, or it will come to you soon enough.

Contact me to create a risk management profile and move away from risky cybersecurity practices.

Hacking, is it Like a Recipe?

One thing we do know that Hackers are very successful in hacking overall. We don’t really know how they do it? But the headlines say it all: “Yahoo says 500 Million Accounts Stolen

If you study the image above (a bubble representation of all hacked entities) from the website www.informationisbeautiful.net

You see Yahoo actually with 320 million and River City Media with 1.37 Billion  hacked accounts. Each bubble has a story, with a breach and people affected by the hackers attacking some aspect of the information technology defense.

So how easy is it for hackers to attack ? Is it a recipe? Do you perform a few functions and then steal the data?

I have blogged this methodology for 3 years now, and it is interesting that in 3 years plus with various explanations the methods of hackers has not changed too much.

(image from previous post)

We can summarize and say the hackers review the job (attack) and try to find an opening to perform their objectives:

  1. Money
  2. Political reasons
  3. The fun of it (young hackers)
  4. National goals

After they review the attacks by looking at your defenses they are now ready to probe your specific defense with specific attacks.

In my mind the #1 reason for hackers to attack is money and the Darknet tells the story, the Darknet is where the criminal hackers trying to make money sell their gains.

If you ask me the credit card problems we have gotten due to the new normal of these “hacking events” is annoying but not life changing for the most part.

What would be LIFE changing is the hacking and stealing data (information) of health records. Now the hackers could really mess with other aspects of our lives which we are not used to modifications.

How exactly would a “screwed up” health record look? The next time your doctor looks at health records are they doctored? Or not?

Every day there is a new day and the hackers are looking for new ways to make money including using the massive amount of health data already stolen.

This means we need to be wary of our information usage and review all manners of defenses everywhere.

Test, test, test your defense should be the mantra. Because the hackers are probing and attacking all the time. It is a classic red vs blue issue.

Contact Us to review your defenses