Mese: ottobre 2014

Think…

Schermata 2014-10-31 alle 12.11.26

Annunci

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

Happy birthday, Internet! You may be turning 45 today, but we swear you don’t look a day over 30. And not to embarrass you, but we thought we’d celebrate by sharing some of your baby photos. Or, more accurately, perhaps some of your sonograms.

How do we define the invention of the internet? It’s a question that scholars and armchair historians have debated for decades. Did it start with the birth of the web? Did it start with the adoption of TCP/IP? You could make a case for either. But one seminal moment in the creation of the internet cannot be denied: the first host-to-host connection of the ARPANET between UCLA and Stanford on October 29, 1969. At 10:30pm.

How do we know the exact time? We actually have a document of this historical event. Below, the IMP log which recorded that at 22:30 (10:30pm) the researchers at UCLA and their computer “talked to SRI, host to host.” The IMP log was what researchers used to document their progress as they built and connected the fundamental technologies that would shape our modern tech infrastructure.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

The SRI is in reference to the computer at Stanford, an SDS 940. The team at UCLA was talking with that computer all the way from Los Angeles (about 350 miles to the south) with their SDS Sigma 7 computer. Two different computers talking together over a network host-to-host? It was like magic!

In the photo at the top of the post we see a group of researchers circa 1970 standing around a teletype going over data from the ARPANET. William Naylor is there on the far left. Below, a shot of 3420 Boelter Hall at UCLA, where that first ARPANET message was sent from.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

The story of the first message on the internet is that of a happy accident. The UCLA computer connected to the computer at Stanford and the two teams were each on the phone together for the historic moment. UCLA researcher Bill Duvall typed an “L” and they asked down the phone, “did you get the L.” Yes, they got the L. He next typed the letter O. “Did you get the O?” they asked. Stanford had gotten the O. Next he typed a G. “Did you get the G?” Nope. the computer had crashed. They were trying to type LOGIN. They had only managed to type LO, leaving the very first message ever sent over the ARPANET as LO, as in lo and behold.

One of the internet’s founding fathers, Leonard Kleinrock, is particularly fond of telling this story. I had the pleasure of getting a tour of the room where the first message was sent at 3420 Boelter Hall at UCLA from Kleinrock not long after first moving to Los Angeles. It has since been restored to its former retro-computing glory (complete with teletypes, the original IMPand 1960s desks) and you can walk by that very room if you’re ever on UCLA’s campus.

But let’s go back even further. Below, we have a short article from the July 15, 1969 edition of the Daily Bruin (UCLA’s student newspaper) announcing that ARPA was working on networked computing on campus. “Country’s computers linked here first,” proclaimed the headline. There was no indication of the internet revolution that was to come.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

Perhaps this is where the analogies about baby photos and sonograms start to get a bit embarrassing because the photo below is kind of like the moment of conception. The photograph below shows the delivery of the SDS Sigma 7 computer in Boelter Hall at UCLA circa 1967.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

It was easier to cut open the wall and use a forklift to get it into the build than unhook the computer components. But the computer alone wasn’t what made networked computing possible, of course. They needed IMPs (interface message processors), which you can think of as refrigerator-sized modems.

Not only do we have baby pictures of the internet (and a bit of over-sized computer porn), we have what might be considered the notches on the doorframe measuring little Suzy Q. Internet’s growth over the years: the ARPANET maps. Below, a GIF showing its growth from 1969 until 1989.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!EXPAND

Internet history nerds will continue to fight over who gets credit for the “true” birth of the internet. But wherever you fall in the the great Internet Invention Debates of the 21st century, you have to admit that the internet’s equivalent of baby photos and bronzed shoes are pretty cool. I guess what I’m trying to say is that if you deny the ARPANET’s role in internet history (as some people surprisingly still do) you hate babies.

Below, the IEEE plaque at UCLA commemorating it as the birthplace of the internet, photographed by Gizmodo’s own Alissa Walker.

Happy 45th Birthday, Internet!

Happy birthday internet! We don’t know where we’d be without you. Probably doing something productive.

Images: Courtesy of the KCIS at UCLA

L’auto del futuro dovrà difendersi dagli hacker

Carlo Del Bo |International Security Advisor

Grazie all’evoluzione tecnologica e a grande richiesta del pubblico, le vetture d’ultima generazione trovano in internet un partner irrinunciabile: è così che ad esempio possono fungere da hot spot Wi-Fi tramite sim card integrate, oppure da semplice ripetitore per la telefonia mobile, spesso replicando in vettura alcune app originariamente progettate per gli smartphone.

Ogni conquista ha però il suo prezzo. L’accesso alla rete non è mai a senso unico, e nessun dispositivo è veramente “chiuso”. Questo il parere di Carlo Del Bo, executive advisor presso BizEmpowerment SA di Lugano e da oltre 25 anni security manager e specialista della cyber defense: «L’accesso al web porta in dote, inevitabilmente, una vulnerabilità. Non importa quale sia lo strumento che accede alla rete. Recenti attacchi hacker negli States, ad esempio, hanno avuto come vittime frigoriferi e televisori connessi a internet. Elettrodomestici che, contrariamente ai PC, nella stragrande maggioranza dei casi non sono…

View original post 272 altre parole

This Chart Shows How The US Military Is Responsible For Almost All The Technology In Your iPhone

Nearly all of the technology in many of the world’s most ubiquitous electronic devices can be traced to a single, taxpayer-funded source: the US Department of Defense.

In an article promoted by the European Commission today, Italian economist Mariana Mazzucato wrote that sparking the world’s economies after a long recession will require greater and riskier investment from government. She used Apple’s wildly popular handheld devices as a present-day example.

The world’s biggest company may have more cash on hand than many actual governments. But the technological breakthroughs behind its iconic iPods, iPhones, and iPads were funded almost exclusively by government agencies — and by one particular segment of one particular country’s government.

As the chart below demonstrates, there’s little in these devices that doesn’t owe its existence to the US Department of Defense in some form or another.

iPhone Technology Military Funding Chart PNGMariana Mazzucato, The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking the Public vs. Private Sector Myths. London: Anthem.

Later devices saw investments from the Navy for their GPS capabilities, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) funded Siri. In fact, the parent company of Siri’s creator, which was acquired by Apple in 2010, still gets over half of its revenue from the Department of Defense, according to a report they published earlier this year.

Highlighting an idea from her recent book on the relationship between the private and public sectors, Mazzucato explains that achieving missions like putting a man on the moon required “a confident ‘entrepreneurial state’ willing and able to take on the early, capital-intensive high risk areas which the private sector tends to fear.”

The US military was often the one taking “capital-intensive risks” that resulted in Apple’s line of products. And the result is a family of devices so widely used that it’s difficult to imagine the world without them.

Read more:  http://www.businessinsider.com/the-us-military-is-responsible-for-almost-all-the-technology-in-your-iphone-2014-10#ixzz3HdqL1AXz

L’auto del futuro dovrà difendersi dagli hacker

Grazie all’evoluzione tecnologica e a grande richiesta del pubblico, le vetture d’ultima generazione trovano in internet un partner irrinunciabile: è così che ad esempio possono fungere da hot spot Wi-Fi tramite sim card integrate, oppure da semplice ripetitore per la telefonia mobile, spesso replicando in vettura alcune app originariamente progettate per gli smartphone.

Ogni conquista ha però il suo prezzo. L’accesso alla rete non è mai a senso unico, e nessun dispositivo è veramente “chiuso”. Questo il parere di Carlo Del Bo, executive advisor presso BizEmpowerment SA di Lugano e da oltre 25 anni security manager e specialista della cyber defense: «L’accesso al web porta in dote, inevitabilmente, una vulnerabilità. Non importa quale sia lo strumento che accede alla rete. Recenti attacchi hacker negli States, ad esempio, hanno avuto come vittime frigoriferi e televisori connessi a internet. Elettrodomestici che, contrariamente ai PC, nella stragrande maggioranza dei casi non sono protetti da antivirus, non hanno a disposizione firewall e non applicano gli aggiornamenti di sicurezza via via rilasciati dai produttori di software. L’auto non fa eccezione».

Tesla

La prima vettura vittima di hackeraggio è stata Tesla Model S (in figura). Il problema non riguarda soltanto la perdita o il trafugamento di dati sensibili, quanto piuttosto la sicurezza degli automobilisti. «L’auto da un lato potrebbe fungere da cavallo di Troia per quanti volessero accedere indirettamente a smartphone e dispositivi mobile che dialoghino con il veicolo – prosegue Del Bo –, dall’altro potrebbe non rispondere di se stessa. L’elettronica governa oggigiorno l’80% delle tecnologie d’una vettura. Dall’ABS all’ESP, agli air bag, senza dimenticare le smart key e i moderni dispositivi di sicurezza; ad esempio l’arresto automatico in caso di collisione imminente. Violare l’elettronica di un veicolo può significare prenderne possesso a distanza. A maggior ragione quando i sistemi di guida autonoma, attualmente in fase di prototipazione, diventeranno operativi». Una questione che solleva interrogativi rilevanti in sede di responsabilità civile e penale. Per fare un esempio, qualora l’apertura degli air bag indotta da un pirata informatico dovesse causare un incidente, la colpa sarebbe da ascrivere al solo hacker, oppure anche alla Casa automobilistica che non ha saputo prevenire un attacco cibernetico? Negli Stati Uniti il tema è già caldo, in Europa lo diventerà nei prossimi anni. Mentre il rischio di attacchi ai sistemi informatici sta acquisendo una sempre maggiore rilevanza strategica e operativa, una contromisura adeguata e univoca non è ancora disponibile. Gli esperti della sicurezza però si sono già attivati, in primis Carlo Del Bo, pioniere nel nuovo ramo della “car defense”.

The Usual Suspects: Russia or China Suspected in White House Data Breach

After months of embarrassing physical security lapses, the Presidential residence appears to suffer a digital breach

Sometimes when you’re laser focused on spying on your own citizens (more specifically 75 percent of their internet traffic and 99 percent of their phone calls) and your allies, sometimes you don’t have time for the tedious task of safeguarding your own networks from foreign hackers.  That seems to be the case for the White House, whose unclassified internal staff network was reportedly accessed by hackers.

The hackers reportedly entered through the employee virtual proxy network (VPN) system, which gives employees remote access to email and other unclassified local resources.  Traces of the intrusion were only observed post-mortem “two to three weeks ago”, according to The Washington Post.  And the intrusion had gone unnoticed until an ally took note of the peculiar traffic and sent a warning to the White House IT staff.

The White House
The White House — America’s presidential residence — has suffered embarassing security intrusions in recent months. [Image Source: Outside the Beltway]

I. Breach is Confirmed

The Washington Post cites one official as saying:

In the course of assessing recent threats, we identified activity of concern on the unclassified Executive Office of the President network.  We took immediate measures to evaluate and mitigate the activity. . . . Unfortunately, some of that resulted in the disruption of regular services to users. But people were on it and are dealing with it.

Certainly a variety of actors find our networks to be attractive targets and seek access to sensitive information.  We are still assessing the activity of concern.

A second official reportedly said:

On a regular basis, there are bad actors out there who are attempting to achieve intrusions into our system.  This is a constant battle for the government and our sensitive government computer systems, so it’s always a concern for us that individuals are trying to compromise systems and get access to our networks.

The Washington Post and The New York Times cited administration officials as stating that there was no evidence of a more serious breach of the classified networks used by the President, high-level executive branch staff, and high level members of the U.S. Military and Intelligence community.

The breach is being investigated by the Secret Service, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the National Security Agency (NSA).

II. Hackers Probed Network, But Reportedly Did No Damage

According to the report, the attackers did not seek to damage computers, or take over other systems at the White House.  Instead they appeared to be merely methodically mapping the network from the node they gained unauthorized access to.  This suggests a greater level of sophistication.  The Washington Post reports:

In the case of the White House, the nature of the target is consistent with a state-sponsored campaign, sources said.

Probable culprits include Russia, a prominent figure in the world of global hacking, and China, which has been developing a crack team of military hackers.  Like the U.S., both Russia and China have shown a penchant for sparing no expense in their efforts to spy on both their own people and the world at large.

There have been past reports of hackers gaining unauthorized access to the White House, but it’s unclear whether there was ever official confirmation of those incidents.

The White House IT staff responded to the recent intrusion by forcing all White House staff with VPN/intranet access to change their passwords.  Files remained inaccessible for weeks, according to reports, but email access was preserved as IT staff looked to prevent further probing of the network.

III. The White House Falls Victim to Both Cyber and Physical Intrusions.

The entire incident bears some resemblance to the recent lapses in physical security at the White House by the U.S. Secret Service.  In the past five years, the Obama administration has seen 16 separate incidents of people scaling the White House fence, according to official documents.

Secret Service reports reveal that a 2011 shooting was improperly dismissed as “cars backfiring”, telling security staff to “stand down”.  It turned out that the shooting was very real.  Four days later a housekeeper discovered signs of damage, leading to the realization that at least seven bullets, fired from a high-power automatic assault rifle had struck the White House.  One had even shattered a second story window, damage that went unnoticed for more than half a week.

White House hits
A Secret Service document details where the bullets struck the White House. [Image Source: The White House via The Washington Post]

Secret Service initially claimed that the shooting was a gang gun battle and that the bullets were accidental and not intended for the White House.  Eventually federal investigators discovered that wild claim was as much utter bunk as it sounded.  In reality the gunshots had come from an angry and troubled 21-year-old U.S. citizen from Idaho.  Before travelling to the capitol, he had told relatives that he “needed to kill” the President.  That man was eventually sentenced to 25 years in prison and fined $94,000 USD for attempted assassination.

In August, a homeless, armed veteran managed to make it into the East Room of the White House before he was finally detained.  Any armed intruder is supposed to be shot dead on sight, according to the White House’s security policy, but multiple security lapses allowed the man’s potentially dangerous impromptu tour of the White House.

White House intruder

White House Intruder
Omar Gonzalez broke into the White House armed in late September.  He was eventually arrested without anyone being harmed. [Image Source: The Washington Post (top), The Heavy (bottom)]


In a separate, more humorous incident — also in August — a toddler managed to squeeze through the fence bars, triggering a lockdown by security staff.

Sources: The Washington PostThe New York Times

– See more at: http://www.dailytech.com/The+Usual+Suspects+Russia+or+China+Suspected+in+White+House+Data+Breach/article36796.htm#sthash.pimG8rJi.dpuf