Tag: Talking Code

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BlueTooth on Your Defibrillator? The Case Against Wi-Fi

As more and more devices become networked, the use cases for wireless communications protocols like Bluetooth and NFC (Near Field Communications) multiply. Hardly a week goes by where some company figures out a way to pair wireless communications with some inanimate object or another. (Bluetooth bike locks, anyone?) But what happens when those wireless devices run critical infrastructure or life-saving technology like implanted medical devices? We learned earlier this week that no less than Dick Cheney was concerned enough about wireless attacks on his implanted defibrillator that he had the wireless management features of the device disabled, for fear they could be used in an assassination attempt. Security experts, like Dr. Kevin Fu at The University of Michigan, ¬†doubtful that such an attack was realistic, also¬†refused to rule it out entirely. Given the many, proven tools and strategies for hacking wireless communications like Bluetooth, you might think that foregoing well […]

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IT Risk And The Zombie Apocalypse: Surviving The Onslaught

One of the most vexing problems that faces IT organizations these days is how to measure their relative risk of being hacked or otherwise attacked. This sounds like pretty dry stuff, but it’s not. Failing to adequately account for your risks and exposure can mean the difference between swatting away an annoying intrusion attempt, and watching as foreign competitors or nation-states siphon off your critical intellectual property, bleeding your company of its competitiveness. But raising the alarm about this is always a tricky matter. Soft pedal it, and nobody takes you seriously. Scream from the rafters and …well…you’re screaming from the rafters. My friend and former colleague Josh Corman, however, found a good metaphor for the whole affair: the ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE. It’s all a bit of fun – though Mr. Corman is dead serious about the zombie stuff. Still, the idea is simple: attacks on your network and those of […]