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Thoughts From My Inbox

July 8th, 2022

Running Naked, Legos, and Warshipping

The best thing about a long weekend is the short week that follows. That said, I think the cyber criminals and hackers took the rest of the week off as the inbox has been lacking interesting things.
 
 However, if you take the data and forecasts seriously, the math would tell you that $2.82B has been spent on cybersecurity since I last published this newsletter, one week ago.  (10,080 minutes to a week x $280K cybersecurity spend/minute, which equates to $146B, annually) .  That’s an awfully big number, but another source claims it was $262B in 2021.  Maybe they’re not so far off.  Regardless, cybercrime isn’t going away any time soon.  

 

Something About…

 

Running Naked

Evidently, “running naked” is a Chinese term “used to refer to a lack of privacy”. It was used in this article about a recent data breach that has effected the Shanghai police department and led to the personal data of 1 billion Chinese people to be available for sale online.  According to the WSJ, the data was not password protected, and was available for more than a year.  (And if you’re curious, the top five results in an online search for the term “running naked” returned three entries on a UK drama of that name, one piece from Road Runner Sports, and another from Good Housekeeping.  Beyond that, it was pretty much all downhill, as you might expect. )

 

The Chinese Threat

The heads of MI5 and the FBI held a joint press conference earlier in the week, hoping to get people to realize how big a threat China is when it comes to stealing data and technology. One more reason to make sure that you have every possible cybersecurity protection in place (without impinging upon your ability to do business).

 

Auctions

I found it pretty interesting that a 77 million year old Gorgosaurus (related to a T-Rex) skeleton will be auctioned by Sotheby’s, later this month.  It’s expected to sell for between $5M-$8M, and it would look great in your living room.   And if your current living room isn’t big enough, you can always buy the former Gucci HQ mansion in London. It was built in 1769, has eight bedrooms, and is on the market for $66M.

Walking on Legos

A week or two back, I had a bit about a teambuilding exercise going wrong… something about walking on hot coals.  Now, it’s walking on Legos.  It’s been a long time since I stepped on one of those, but I do seem to find the random hard plastic dog toys on a regular basis.  If given the choice between Legos and hot coals, I’ll take the coals any day.

Warshipping

This was a new one to me, and it combines physical and digital cyber threats (aka “phygital”) to attack your network.  Hackers are now building small devices with wireless and cell capabilities, and sending them to random offices.  Once there, they sit and grab network data until somebody realizes what’s going on.  Long story short- open the mail at at your office, ASAP, and make sure it doesn’t contain any warships.

Marriott

Based on the fact that Marriott announced this week that one of their Baltimore, MD properties just suffered a data breach, one might wonder how much effort they put into cybersecurity and education.  This is the fourth major data breach the chain has suffered over the past handful of years, and makes me think that I need to update password and account info for their rewards program.

LinkedIn Scams

The FBI is now stating that fraud on LinkedIn is a ‘significant threat’.  Honestly, I’m not sure who out there gets a LinkedIn message saying something to the extent of “you don’t know me, but you should invest in crypto currency, and then move your money to my management”, but it’s happening.  I guess the Fresh Prince of Nigeria failed to target these people so this is all new to them.

Conflicting Data

This article concludes with the mention of conflicting data as it relates to data breaches; one report claims that unpatched vulnerabilities account for 82% of successful cyber attacks, while a second shows that 60% of cases stemmed from phishing.  Different sample groups will always have different results, especially when it comes to cyber attacks as so many people and businesses are still leery of admitting to the fact they’ve been hit.  Regardless of the data and the sources, it’s still a good reminder that you have to patch regularly and consistently, you need to implement multifactor authentication (MFA), and that your employees are still your first line of defense.

The list was short this week, but I hope it held your interest.  Every now and then I come across something completely random that catches my eye, and I figure that if I wasted time on it, then you should, too.  This week it’s called Absurd Trolley Problems, and while I honestly have no idea why it exists, it actually sucked me in for a time yesterday.  And it reminded me of Dumb Ways to Die, which I posted a month or two back.

Hope you have a great weekend!

Abbey

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