Security Bytes - April 2012 - Avoiding Lost Device Disasters!
After viewing the news and hearing about the rising incidents of mobile device thefts, I felt compelled to continue on the topic of mobile device security and how to avoid disasters. The news media had several stories about people being attacked violently to steal a mobile device. The main reason behind the attacks was to steal the device itself and to gain access to the data within it.
Without realizing it many people synchronize a large amount of sensitive data to their mobile devices without considering if that device is lost or stolen how it may impact their lives. Most of us dead the thought of loosing our purse or wallet due to the burden of having to cancel credit cards and notify authorities of potential identity theft.
Security Bytes - March 2012 - Mobile Device Security
Every year we all get excited as tech companies introduce new smart phones, tablets and laptops that can enhance our mobile lifestyles. As these devices evolve, we as consumers want them to be able to synchronize our important data effortlessly to / from our home PC / Laptop to mobile devices. Such devices like the iPad and iPhone have revolutionized the way we do business and have empowered users to be able to run their businesses while on the road. The one thing we never think of what happens if one of these “trusted” devices gets lost of stolen? Is your data safe? Can someone get into your mobile device and get their hands on sensitive data contained in emails and other files that may be stored on your device?
Hardly anyone thinks about this until disaster happens and then must scramble to mitigate the possible danger to their personal information and reputation. It is important to take time to think about the possible risk one is exposed to if a device is lost. Luckily there are several ways you can limit the exposure to risk if you loose your mobile device.
Security Bytes - December 2011 - Home Networking
This month I wish to present an article about home integration and how to optimize your next major home remodel project. Periodically most of us renovate our homes or basements for various reasons, most of which revolve around updating technology and other new gadgets that help to automate the home. Over the years I have seen common mistakes that can be avoided by proper planning and a little intuition.
One major thing I see over and over again is people not allocating enough physical wiring in the walls for home networking. Lets think about all the gadgets we want to integrate into out homes. Big screen TVs, DVRs home automation, media servers, intelligent appliances, home entertainment controllers, climate controllers, home alarm / video surveillance systems... the list can get quite extensive with some home renovations. The main thing one has to consider is that most of these systems require some form of Internet access either in wired or wireless form.
Security Bytes - January 2012 - Smartphone Security
Nearly everyone today has some kind of mobile device, smartphone or tablet pc that they use and trust for everyday communications. We have learned to be careful with what we do using our home and office computers on the Internet due to the threats from viruses / malware and other threats, yet we implicitly trust our mobile technology without regard for the fact that it also is basically a computer with software running on it.
Many new mobile phones have dual core processors that are nearly as powerful as laptops from just 5 years ago and thus have become the target of many hackers for new attacks that can subvert these devices as easily as home computers can be attacked. In many cases our mobile devices are perceived as "black boxes" where the end user cannot get into the operating system to see what is going on and prevent the attacks. New industry data reveals a 400% increase in attacks to the Android operating system that powers many mobile devices. There are also increasing attacks to Apple iPhones as well, due to the fact that many people jailbreak their iPhone to get new software not available in the Apple iTunes store.
What can happen as a result of these attacks?
Security Bytes - November 2011 - Home Security
Home security has advanced over the years to take advantage of the Internet and other technologies that have emerged due to the availability of a networked environment. What many of us don't realize is how interlinked these systems are and that if one fails others can fail as a result.
Most home security vendors require either a phone line or Internet connection for their systems to report back to the monitoring station if there is a break-in or fire in the house. Most of the alarm systems installed come with a small backup battery to ensure that their system will still monitor in the event of a short power interruption. In many homes home phone service may be bundled Internet and TV service to save money and therefore does not go out via a traditional copper phone line. As a result, if there is a power failure it may happen that the home alarm system will be operational, but the Internet connection may be down and therefore if am alarm is tripped the monitoring station will never be notified of the event. Traditional copper phone lines, ( POTS ) Plain Old Telephone Service, draw power from the telco grid and are usually not effected by local power outages.