March 08, 2015

Forensic Files: Lessons from Real Cases
Seasoned forensics investigators have historically collected data from a very broad range of devices and sources, from the unsophisticated “electronic organizers” of 15 years ago to the latest smartphones to the newest photo sharing websites. When investigators first encountered such devices, the tools to collect from them often didn’t exist. The first task for investigators might involve developing the software and methods to complete a collection, before moving forward with the collection itself. In recent years, forensics tools have become more robust and they will generally collect from thousands of different types of data stores and devices. Still, investigators must sometimes problem-solve new challenges “on the fly”

Red Hat Launches Application Container OS
Many are betting on container technologies playing a significant role in how organizations deliver and manage applications, so there’s a focus in helping streamline application delivery. The goal for Red Hat here is to create a small host footprint and provide essential functionality for allowing atomic updates and running application containers like Docker. CoreOS and Canonical’s Snappy are two early examples of increasing activity in the container OS space. CoreOS’ Rocket container launched a few months ago and is seeing healthy activity. Canonical is in a similar position to Red Hat. Both are primarily known for Linux distribution and are interested in providing the larger next-gen framework made up of open source goodness.

The Evolution Of The Browser
The browser wars have always been cyclical, moving from periods of monoculture dominated by one or two browsers to periods of comparative competition characterized by multiple, strong, second-tier browsers and a growing list of niche browsers. We’re midway through the latter, as is evident by the release of several new browsers, including Microsoft’s Project Spartan and Vivaldi, helmed by ex-Opera CEO Jon Stephenson von Tetzchner. While Spartan and Vivaldi are the most widely written about new browsers, many additional, niche browsers have recently launched or are under development, including Torch (BitTorrent) Epic (privacy), Nitro (speed) and Slim (fast startup) and Lightspeed (minimalist, search-oriented).

On the Case at Mount Sinai, It’s Dr. Data
Dr. Schadt had concluded that medicine was ripe for a data-driven revolution. Chronic diseases, Dr. Schadt explained, are not caused by single genes, but are “complex networked disorders” involving genetics, but also patient characteristics such as weight, age, gender, vital signs, tobacco use, toxic exposure and exercise routines — all of which can be captured as data and modeled. “We are trying to move medicine in the direction of climatology and physics; disciplines that are far more advanced and mature quantitatively,” he said. That message resonated with Mr. Hammerbacher. By 2013 he was spending most of his time in New York rather than on the West Coast, assembling a research team that now numbers 10 people.

JavaScript is Cool…and the Market is Hot
Many developers agree that Flash is dead. Some say it died of natural causes, but most of us know who killed it. JavaScript has replaced Flash and, for at least the next decade, will continue to expand and take charge of an increasing number of digital responsibilities in varying parts of the stack. If we consider what Flash had to offer – which was mostly just in the UI – and multiply it several times to account for other parts of the application, we’ll begin to understand just how much value JavaScript delivers. Does it have an expiration date? Sure, but we certainly don’t know it yet. Another important longevity factor is JavaScript’s constant evolution. New JavaScript libraries and frameworks are being developed all the time.

Public cloud providers’ end game shouldn’t surprise anyone
In the beginning, public cloud was the only choice. If you had an existing environment on-premise, colocated or with another web hosting company, you couldn’t connect it up to the public cloud. You could set up your own site-to-site VPN across the internet, but this had its challenges and limitations. Indeed, this was all part of the cloud provider’s strategy — you had to go all in. Everything should be deployed into the provider’s public cloud and nowhere else. It made sense when cloud providers were mostly focusing on new projects and new applications, but it has proven a big challenge to migrate existing workloads or run systems in parallel.

Enforcement Cut Global Banking Trojans 53 Percent
"If you can shut them down, then all of those will not receive any commands or be manipulated by the attackers," he said. Law enforcement agencies are also focusing on the authors of malware toolkits. "They're breaking the supply chain and making it harder for lower criminals to get their hands on the tools and use them," said Wueest. Not all countries improved at the same rate, he added. In the United States, the decline was about on a par with the global average. But financial Trojan activity did not drop as much in Japan, China, and South Korea. "The attackers moved to different markets because it's starting to get more difficult to get money out of the US or UK-based financial institutions," he said.

Emerging tech spurs data protection pains
"With hybrid cloud data, you have information in multiple locations and you may not be able to install the same data protection solutions in all of these. For mobile data, the devices it's stored on may not regularly see a network. And, for big data, the amount of information can put pressure on backup windows," he explains. However, Venter urges, the solution is not to bury your head in the sand. "Data protection technologies are evolving in parallel with the challenges that are emerging and businesses will find it far easier to protect themselves if they can stay abreast of these developments." EMC believes the other challenge is organisations are engaging several vendors to meet their data protection needs, leading to the risk of suffering unplanned systems downtime.

A general-purpose service engine for unattended processing execution
The PEprocessorEngine is a native .NET Windows service implemented in the executable file PEprocessorEngine.exe. It references directly the PEprocessorLib.DLL class library and is equipped with an XML configuration file (the App.config file, runtime-named PEprocessorEngine.exe.config) that hosts the configuration settings for the engine and the common configuration settings for the various implemented modules (each module has then its own configuration file, containing its specific settings). PEprocessorEngine.exe.config does not contain settings specific for a single PE processor module, only settings for the engine. As stated before, the PEprocessorEngine is equipped with a support SQL Server database, basically used for these purposes:

VMware sued for failure to comply with Linux license
Despite the evidence of the code, the Conservancy stated, "VMware's legal counsel finally informed Conservancy in 2014 that VMware had no intention of ceasing their distribution of proprietary-licensed works derived from Hellwig's and other kernel developers' copyrights, despite the terms of GPLv2." Therefore, the Conservancy felt it had "no recourse but to support Hellwig's court action." Besides the general violation of the license, the group continued, "Conservancy and Hellwig specifically assert that VMware has combined copyrighted Linux code, licensed under GPLv2, with their own proprietary code called "vmkernel" and distributed the entire combined work without providing nor offering complete, corresponding source code for that combined work under terms of the GPLv2."

Quote for the day:

"Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked; leadership is defined by results not attributes." -- Peter Drucker