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Simplicity should underpin enterprise security in a Covid-19 world: Magda Chelly surveys the global infosec landscape | #corporatesecurity | #businesssecurity | #
Responsible Cyber co-founder will focus on education, communication, and more at this year’s RSA Conference
Infosec recruitment flaws and adapting cybersecurity posture for a global pandemic are two notable topics being discussed at tomorrow’s virtual RSA Conference.
These themes will be the focus of three talks from Magda Chelly, head of cyber risk consulting for Marsh Asia.
She is a certified CISO, on the advisory board for the Executive Summit of Black Hat Asia 2020, runs a popular YouTube channel focused on cybersecurity, and has won a string of accolades for being a cybersecurity influencer. Chelly is also the co-founder of Singapore-based security-as-a-service company Responsible Cyber.
Speaking to The Daily Swig, Chelly gives the inside track on her RSA presentations and reflects on the global disparities in cybersecurity maturity and the career opportunities open to female infosec professionals.
How did you get into cybersecurity?
I started being interested in cybersecurity when I was doing my PhD in telecoms engineering.
I evolved into an IT/CRM [customer relations management] consultant and even worked in sales and business development roles.
Since then I have had advisory roles [in cybersecurity], which have mostly evolved from governance to more technical cybersecurity – for example, cloud security with AWS, Microsoft Azure, Office 365 – to a more global approach when it comes to being a CISO.
That means building the whole cybersecurity strategy and rolling it out across one to three years, especially with regulated businesses like insurance. It was exciting because I needed to ensure that the company was not only getting up to speed, but also that they didn’t get themselves into trouble.
Please tell us about your role at Marsh…
Marsh Asia provides cyber risk consulting. It focuses on risk quantification, as companies are still facing challenges evaluating and quantifying cyber risks to find out the related financial losses.
Unlike other risks, there is limited historical data about cybercrime, mainly because it is a relatively new risk area, but also due to its constantly changing form.
Cyber risk management has not yet been ‘reduced to practice’ on a wide scale.
This approach enables point estimates of the financial cost – the severity – of cyber events with good accuracy.
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Having credible quantitative estimates for both severity and likelihood will allow risk managers to answer the fundamental question: “What is the likelihood that our organization will experience a cyber event causing a loss of greater than, say, $100 million in the next 12 months?”
Most often, it is the likelihood question that derails many attempts at quantifying cyber risk, due to the unpredictable nature of a human-initiated threat.
So we’re talking dollars here – how data loss might happen, how much my business might lose, and how much I can get in terms of investment.
What can RSA Conference attendees expect to hear about ‘Getting the Security and Flexibility Balance Right in a Covid-19 World’?
I’ll be addressing how to be aware of the evolving risks within an uncertain environment.
And I’ll be [urging attendees to make] simplicity [a pillar of their cybersecurity approach] because fundamentals can be applied. You can, for example, apply your NIST compliance checklist every time a risk changes. I will be talking about alternatives.
I will be presenting about use cases and some additional changes that are super interesting.
I believe that cybersecurity professionals tend to be over confident about their capabilities.
We’re talking about an environment with a lot of factors that might impact our security. We’re not talking about traditional corporate security and enterprise boundaries. We cannot take the same approach.
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If you go into an employee’s ecosystem and you understand how they work, you realize that they will find a way to [surmount] technical challenges by using their personal emails, etc, so that of course raises additional risks. And working in a quarantine environment raises risks that were not considered.
And the fact that some [employees] will go back to the office, some will stay working remotely – how do you manage that securely?
Cybersecurity professionals also have a challenge communicating with employees, who [sometimes] do not even know that there is a [security] team.
We tend to make employees feel that we are not reachable. If you’re a CISO of a big company then, obviously, you’re very busy. You have a team and you cannot spare time to talk to everyone, but it’s extremely important to go beyond just sending a newsletter and make sure that employees see cybersecurity as part of the culture.
So don’t talk about only corporate requirements. Talk about how they need to consider cybersecurity in everyday activities – no matter if it’s a corporate requirement or not.
This year’s RSA Conference is taking place virtually
And what about your other talk: ‘Hacking the Cybersecurity Job Market: A Primer for Students and Grads’?
This is about helping the student understand the different [available] career paths.
We hear about a big skills gap globally. Sometimes [this is exacerbated by] the fact that HR will request everything and anything in the job description. From a hacker to a compliance manager, to a CISO, [all skills and experience] is put in one job description, which is of course impossible. [Or they ask for] someone junior, but already with experience, so it just doesn’t make sense.
So [I will talk about] finding the right balance, and how to address the challenges and start the discussions with HR teams.
How does Singapore, or Asia more widely, compare to Europe or North America in terms of its cybersecurity maturity?
I would say it’s very different. The Asian market is very fragmented. Every country has different maturity, different initiatives, and different – especially regulatory – requirements.
Singapore is one of the most mature in terms of regulations – we have the PDPA privacy law, the Cybersecurity Act, the MAS TRM guidelines.
In countries where maturity is much lower, companies just do not feel that they need to do anything [to strengthen cybersecurity].
The Asian market compared to Europe or the US is still much, much lower in terms of general maturity, which means, again, there is a greater opportunity to help those companies.
You founded the Singapore chapter of Women of Security, or WoSEC. How would you summarize the chapter’s aims?
I’m trying to help female professionals get the right support, to give them a safe environment with talks, workshops, social gatherings where we can talk about challenges, we can give some job opportunities, and recommend mentors.
How much progress are you seeing in terms of achieving parity of opportunity between female and male professionals?
I think there are a lot of unconscious biases, but it is changing.
I’ve seen a very positive change in the US and Europe. Asia is still trying its best but it’s not there yet. There’s a lot of work to do.
Companies like Marsh have diversity programs, and they are supporting WoSEC, so the problem is not there as such.
But general feedback from the top of other companies in the region [suggests that] the problem is that the HR process doesn’t [encourage] that inclusion or diversity very well. And then unconscious biases don’t help female professionals [once they do get roles].
It really depends on the country and the culture.
Finally, you noted that cybersecurity is often seen as exclusively the domain of IT teams. Experts also often feel that cybersecurity’s status as a cost center devalues its importance. Are attitudes improving in the boardroom?
Small and medium-sized enterprises are generally focused on increasing sales.
They still lack awareness around cyber risk and do not consider it as a business risk. So they try to get it outsourced. But they are ignorant of the risks that they are exposed to, because the IT or managed service provider [might not be] doing anything about security because it’s not in the contract. This is something I have seen in Singapore and abroad.
What mostly drives change is the regulatory requirement. We cannot just assume that a company will raise their understanding of cybersecurity just because then they are aware [of the problem] – unless the business owner is technologically savvy.
It needs a regulatory push. In Singapore, we have the Monetary Authority of Singapore technology guidelines, for example.
READ MORE Strategies for combating increased cyber threats tied to coronavirus
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Kenya is set to become a major recipient of foreign direct investments in cloud computing.
This is as international investors rush to fund a data centre boom spawned by the proliferation of smartphones, mass adoption of business software and 5G.
Huawei, Microsoft and Amazon Web Services are some of the international players currently enticing small businesses with free data storage in preparation for a looming expansion in data fanned by 5G networks and fibre optic cables.
“So there’s a big opportunity there, as more people begin to use cloud services instead of having their own data servers. These are going to become more valuable,” said Xalam Analytics in their latest report on Africa data centre boom.
Another incentive for the localisation of data storage is that it improves internet speeds since users no longer have to fetch data from the other side of the world.
It is also being driven by clamours by government officials to have local data hosted domestically for national security purposes.
Banks such as Absa Kenya are making investments in machine learning and artificial intelligence tools to improve customer experience and credit risk. New “digital banks” such as Tala, Branch, Zenka are cloud-based.
Since cybersecurity is not an expert capability field for banks, continuous upgrading and development of data centres have been expensive.
Saccos have not been left behind either, as most of them are running on software that allows customers to access their services on the phone.
They also need to store this data somewhere given that in-house data centres are too costly for them. Governments are using cloud and virtualised infrastructure to enhance public service delivery.
Large retail firms also use computer capabilities such as Amazon Web Services databases to transform how they reach a predominantly mobile and digital customer base. Corporates whose expertise is not data storage are slowly giving up their small in-house data centres to major players – helping to drive demand while scores of cloud-native startups are leveraging the cloud to disrupt entire industry sectors.
“The fast-rising requirements of cloud-based technology businesses and their customers, as well as the search for the smallest possible delays in transaction times, has seen businesses seek alternative cloud options,” said the managing director, Carrier Services Division at Telkom Kenya Kebaso Mokogi.
The Kenyan market is currently served by Safaricom, Liquid Telecom, MTN business and other regional players who are set to face competition from the deep-pocketed multinationals who are able to outprice them.
However, Kenya alone does not have the market to attract such high profile investments but is acting as a Launchpad for regional business. It is, however, one of the most active in internet and tech-driven business hubs alongside South Africa and Nigeria.
Africa currently accounts for less than one per cent of total available global data centre capacity, according to data from Xalam Analytics, despite the continent being home to about 17 per cent of the world’s population.
However, its capacity has doubled in the past three years.
Xalam Analytics says the key players in Africa – South Africa, Kenya and Nigeria are set to see investments from multiple investors among them Warren Buffet backed Berkshire Partners and London-based private equity firm Actis, which is injecting Sh25 billion into African data centres over the next three years.
Actis is the investor behind Garden City Mall in Nairobi.
“If you look at the trends around data, its consumption, and cloud migration globally — those trends have played out in many markets and have led to significant growth of the data centre sector,” said Kabir Chal, director at Actis.
“Africa is no different: you see digitisation, the inexorable migration to cloud, and really the advent of big data but, as a consequence, the supply of data hasn’t kept up.”
For data-storage companies operating in Africa, a big hurdle is the continent’s lack of infrastructure, which complicates an already capital-intensive, power-hungry business.
Kenya’s power supply remains low at less than 2,000MW compared to South Africa’s 40,000MW. The two have nearly equal population size.
Companies must often rely on large-scale generators running on costly diesel and petrol to provide electricity, while slow internet speeds, high data costs and a lack of fibre networks constrain their operations.
Nevertheless, the Actis investment is part of a broader trend of international players looking to become involved in the data centre sector in sub-Saharan Africa — where the total data centre capacity equals about a quarter of London’s or half of Frankfurt’s, according to Xalam Analytics.
Microsoft also launched its first African cloud data centres last year, which is a key growth market alongside Nigeria, Kenya and Ghana.
It already accounts for roughly half of Africa’s data centre capacity. Meanwhile, Amazon Web Services plans to open a cluster of data centres in the coming months — the company’s first foray on the continent.
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Graham Cluley Security News is sponsored this week by the folks at LastPass. Thanks to the great team there for their support!
LastPass has analyzed over 47,000 businesses to bring you insights into security behavior worldwide. The report helps you explore changes in password security practices worldwide, and see where businesses are still putting themselves at risk.
The takeaway is clear: Many businesses are making significant strides in some areas of password and access security – but there is still a lot of work to be done. Use of important security measures like multifactor authentication is up, but the continued reality of poor password hygiene still hampers many business’ ability to achieve high standards of security.
In the report, we not only highlight key trends by company size, sector, and location, we provide analysis and recommendations to help IT and business leaders take action where it’s needed most.
If you’re interested in sponsoring my site for a week, and reaching an IT-savvy audience that cares about computer security, you can find more information here.
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World Food Programme forecasts global hunger hotspots as a new decade dawns
Rome – Escalating hunger needs in sub-Saharan Africa dominate a World Food Programme (WFP) analysis of global hunger hotspots in the first half of 2020 with millions of people requiring life-saving food assistance in Zimbabwe, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central Sahel region in the coming months. The sheer scale and complexity of the challenges in Africa and other regions will stretch the resources and capacity of WFP and other agencies to the limit. Ramping up the humanitarian response will again require the generous support of donor governments to fund the assistance required to save lives and support development.
“WFP is fighting big and complex humanitarian battles on several fronts at the start of 2020,” said David Beasley, Executive Director of WFP. “In some countries, we are seeing conflict and instability combine with climate extremes to force people from their homes, farms and places of work. In others, climate shocks are occurring alongside economic collapse and leaving millions on the brink of destitution and hunger.”
The WFP 2020 Global Hotspots Report highlights grave challenges in sub-Saharan Africa over the next six months with Zimbabwe, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central Sahel region standing out when it comes to the needs of hungry children, women and men. The WFP report notes that amidst an imploding economy, the situation in Zimbabwe is increasingly precarious as the country enters the peak of its “lean season” when food is at its most scarce and the number of hungry people has reached its highest point in a decade. WFP is planning assistance for more than 4 million people in Zimbabwe as concerns grow that the impact of a regional drought could drag yet more countries down in the first months of the year.
“Last year, WFP was called upon to bring urgent large-scale relief to Yemen, Mozambique after Cyclone Idai, Burkina Faso and many other crises to avert famine,” said Margot Van Der Velden, WFP Director of Emergencies, “But the world is an unforgiving place and as we turn the page into 2020 WFP is confronting new, monumental humanitarian challenges that we need to address with real urgency.”
A rapidly evolving crisis in Haiti is of deep concern at the turn of the year as escalating unrest paralyzes the economy, driving food prices out of reach of many people (+40% between October 2018 and October 2019). According to a recent IPC survey on food insecurity, this has left 3.7 million people – or one-third of the population – in need of assistance
In Asia, Afghanistan faces insecurity combined with drought, leaving more than 11 million people – over a third of the country’s population – severely food insecure.
In the Middle East, WFP can look back on its success in Yemen where it scaled up by 50% from providing food assistance to 8 million people a month at the beginning of 2018 to 12 million by the end of the year. As it looks forward into 2020, WFP remains alert to growing food needs in Iraq and Lebanon, where civil unrest and macro-economic crisis are leading to an increase in food insecurity.
WFP estimates it will require more than US $10 billion to fully fund all its operations in more than 80 countries around the world in 2020.
“Every year at WFP we plan ahead for the next 12 months and ask for support from the generous governments, private sector institutions and members of the public who help us reach our humanitarian and development goals,” said Beasley. “As an agency that depends entirely on voluntary donations, we have a responsibility to show WFP can continue to be the most efficient and effective global organization delivering the kind of food assistance that saves lives and changes lives across the world.”
Photos of Hunger Hotspot countries available here
The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies, building prosperity and supporting a sustainable future for people recovering from conflict, natural disasters and the impact of climate change.
Follow us on Twitter @wfp_media
For more information please contact (email address: email@example.com):
Frances Kennedy, WFP/ Rome, Tel. +39 06 6513 3725, Mob. +39 346 7600 806
Anne Poulsen, WFP/Copenhagen Mob. +45 40 50 3993
Bettina Luescher WFP/ Geneva Berlin, Mob. +49 160. 9926 1730
Steve Taravella, WFP/Washington, Tel. +1 202 653 1149, Mob. +1 202 770 5993
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Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers recently announced its 2020 IEEE Fellows, with numerous Indian American and South Asian-origin engineers making the cut. IEEE Fellowships are conferred by the IEEE Board of Directors upon a person with an outstanding record of accomplishments. The total number […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com
Source: National Cyber Security – Produced By Gregory Evans This Global 2000 company had racks of the latest boxes from the leading next-gen firewall vendor for its corporate locations. As the enterprise moved applications to the cloud, the firewall vendor recommended more boxes at the perimeter. Plus the fancy firewall-as-a-service for mobile users on the […] View full post on AmIHackerProof.com
#deepweb | 4th Global Report on Adult Learning and Education: Leave No One Behind: Participation, Equity and Inclusion – World
UNESCO report shows fewer than 5% of people in many countries benefit from adult learning opportunities
Paris, 04 December—In almost one-third of countries, fewer than five per cent of adults aged 15 and above participate in education and learning programmes, according to UNESCO’s fourth Global Report on Adult Learning and Education (GRALE 4). Adults with disabilities, older adults, refugees and migrants, minority groups and other disadvantaged segments of society are particularly under-represented in adult education programmes and find themselves deprived of crucial access to lifelong learning opportunities.
Published by the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, the report monitors the extent to which UNESCO Member States put their international commitments regarding adult learning and education into practice and reflects data submitted by 159 countries. It calls for a major change in the approach to adult learning and education (ALE) backed by adequate investment to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to access and benefit from adult learning and education and that its full contribution to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is realized.
“We urge governments and the international community to join our efforts and take action to ensure that no one – no matter who they are, where they live or what challenges they face – is left behind where the universal right to education is concerned,” says UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay, endorsing the report’s recommendations. “By ensuring that donor countries respect their aid obligations to developing countries, we can make adult learning and education a key lever in empowering and enabling adults, as learners, workers, parents, and active citizens.”
The publication stresses the need to increase national investment in ALE, reduce participation costs, raise awareness of benefits, and improve data collection and monitoring, particularly for disadvantaged groups.
Progress in participation in adult learning and education is insufficient
Despite low participation overall, many more than half of responding countries (57% of 152) reported an increase in the overall participation rate in adult learning and education between 2015 and 2018. Low-income countries reported the largest increase in ALE participation (73%), trailed by lower middle income and upper middle income countries (61% and 62%).
Most increases in adult learning and education participation were in sub-Saharan Africa (72% of respondents), followed by the Arab region (67%), Latin America and the Caribbean (60%) and Asia and the Pacific (49%). North America and Western Europe reported fewest increases (38%) though starting from higher levels.
The data shows persistent and deep inequalities in participation and that key target groups such as adults with disabilities, older adults, minority groups as well as adults living in conflict-affected countries are not being reached.
Women’s participation must improve further
While the global report shows that women’s participation in ALE has increased in 59 per cent of the reporting countries since 2015, in some parts of the world, girls and women still do not have sufficient access to education, notably to vocational training, leaving them with few skills and poor chances of finding employment and contributing to the societies they live in, which also represents an economic loss for their countries.
Quality is improving but not fast enough
Quality ALE can also provide invaluable support to sustainable development and GRALE 4 shows that three-quarters of countries reported progress in the quality of education since 2015. Qualitative progress is observed in curricula, assessment, teaching methods and employment conditions of adult educators. However, progress in citizenship education, which is essential in promoting and protecting freedom, equality, democracy, human rights, tolerance and solidarity, remained negligible. No more than 3% of countries reported qualitative progress in this area.
Increase in funding for adult learning and education needed
GRALE 4 shows that over the last ten years, spending on adult learning and education has not reached sufficient levels, not only in low-income countries but also in lower middle income and high-income countries. Nearly 20% of Member States reported spending less than 0.5 per cent of their education budgets on ALE and a further 14% reported spending less than 1 per cent. This information demonstrates that many countries have failed to implement the intended increase in ALE financing proposed in GRALE 3 and that ALE remains underfunded. Moreover, under-investment hits socially disadvantaged adults the hardest. Lack of funding also hampers the implementation of new policies and efficient governance practices.
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#cyberfraud | #cybercriminals | Cyber Risk Update for Construction Companies | Stoel Rives – Global Privacy & Security Blog®
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Imagine the havoc wreaked on your company’s servers if they were infected by a distributed denial of service (DDoS) bot that is bundled with a ransomware payload, or the damage to your brand if a phishing attack targeting your users and customers resulted in the theft of personal information.
Whatever the kind of cyberattack, there can be serious consequences for the company. It could be forced to pay big money to rescue its systems from the clutches of cybercriminals, lose the trust and confidence of customers and users, and even be liable to pay fines and penalties for failing to comply with data privacy laws such as the EU’s Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
As the size and type of cyberattacks continue to exand, many organizations struggle to focus their efforts on what matters most to their unique business. Here are some of today’s top global cybersecurity challenges and how companies can overcome them to strengthen their cyber defense:
Managing both content security and performance
Customer data is one of your company’s most important assets and is a significant investment for your business. When there’s a breach, you’ll lose customer trust because they’ll start to worry about other vulnerabilities in your network.
To protect against such an attack, companies must ensure their security solutions and software are always up to date. However, with so many types of new attacks cropping up every day, it’s best to use a comprehensive, cloud-based suite vs. a one-off solution. Doing so will help protect your business against new and emerging threats and allow you to employ preventive mitigation measures without adding latency to the delivery experience.
Safeguarding against DDoS attacks
A DDoS attack is one where a network of zombie computers sabotage a specific website or server by fictitiously boosting the volume of traffic causing it to shut down. Such attacks cause businesses to lose millions in revenues.
Another reason for DDoS to be a growing concern is the frequency and sophistication of attacks along with their duration and size, which has increased over the past few years.
To protect yourself against the financial and reputational damages caused by such an attack, you could use a product that can proactively intercept and mitigate a DDoS attack.
This provides much faster scrubbing performance since traffic isn’t moved off your Content Delivery Network (CDN), the network of proxy servers and data centers that distributes your data, for cleaning.
Limelight Network’s solution is effective because when it detects an attack, it passes the traffic to one of several globally distributed scrubbing centers to filter it before passing it back to your origin.
Protecting web applications
As a business, the idea behind launching a web application is usually to improve the customer experience. However, unless you protect your web applications appropriately, they’ll just expose you and your customer to unwarranted cyberthreats.
According to Limelight Networks, retail and financial sectors in Southeast Asia suffered the most from web app attacks. Over the past year alone, there has been a significant increase in attack incidents, with websites containing consumer data being the target of 60 percent of attacks.
To combat such threats effectively, business leaders are now turning to cloud-based security solutions instead of on-premise equipment.
Using a Web Application Firewall (WAF) to secure your web-apps as it inserts its nodes between origin servers and the CDN does the heavy work of content caching, web acceleration, and delivery of static content.
Web app attacks are dynamic, so if your WAF only accepts traffic from your CDN, it can minimize the performance impact of WAF protection and lock down IP traffic.
When a new vulnerability is identified, a new security rule should be created and pushed to all WAF nodes. Doing so makes the solution so secure that it can even close “zero-day” attacks prior to app vendor patches being deployed.
You should also make sure your chosen security solution offers protection against malicious bots. They’re the ones that crawl the internet looking for vulnerabilities for cyberattacks.
Staying ahead of the curve
If you’re a business that aims to empower customers through your digital presence, you’ll need to implement (and update) cybersecurity measures at your organization immediately.
Failing to do so puts a lot at risk on your business – including your reputation and the future prospects of your company.
Implementing a cybersecurity solution created and backed by a company such as Limelight Networks, for example, helps you secure your business on all fronts.
The company’s DDoS Attack Interceptor combines a global CDN with in-network detection and attack mitigation to facilitate situation-aware detection and mitigation via on network scrubbing centers.
Its CDN protection offers several features such as geo-fencing, IP whitelisting and blacklisting, which help you fend off even the most seasoned cybercriminals. The same is also true for its DDoS protection and WAF solution, both of which give you the best-in-class cyber protection.
The company’s scalable cloud-based architecture also allows you to reduce the total cost of protection by leveraging its massive global private infrastructure.
Limelight Networks also boasts world-class features such as a dedicated global network, proactive, intelligent threat detection using behavior-based analysis, and cloud-based scrubbing of traffic – which reassures even the most concerned consumer. Act now, because hackers won’t spare your systems while you’re still wondering what to do next.
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Source: National Cyber Security News
General Cybersecurity Conference
April 12, 2018 | Shanghai, China
Cybersecurity Conference Description
2nd Global Fintech&Blockchain China Summit 2018 will be held in Shanghai on April 12th, which is consisting of Main Conference, Parallel Session and a Conjuncted Mini Exhibition Show, more than 800 delegates from government, associations, research institutes, traditional financial insitution as well as fintech and internet finance companies, blockchain technology and industry applicatioin companies, cyptocurrency and digital asset related companiese.
The blockchain summit will discuss the real application cases and future prospect of the blockchain in areas of finance, global payment system, healthcare, energy trading, digital identity authentication, electronic record authentication, IoT, supply chain management and government governance.,etc, and address the opportunities and challenges ahead. We aim to create a global network of entrepreneurs and developers in the fast-evolving blockchain economy, to explore the new business models and unrecognized opportunities in the blockchain world, We are fully convinced that this summit will empower the creation of the new technology-driven financial eco-system and reconfiguration of the future by the blockchain technology.
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