TED events are well known for introducing novel ideas into our thinking. TEDx Vancouver is the biggest TEDx event in the world and TRUSYS’ Principal Pierre Lapointe was in attendance. He reports:
My role at TRUSYS is to look 3 to 5 years ahead to identify ideas and trends that may affect our industry. This year’s TEDx Vancouver had several presentations proposing interesting points of views to consider as we design security and resilience strategies.
- Doug Schmidt is a serious lawyer who is a world renowned specialist in meteorites law. The part of his talk related to our industry was his discussion on the possibility of a meteorite colliding with our planet which is more frequent than most people perceive and estimating the impact on human settlements and possible responses. Fortunately, the probability of a major impact remains miniscule.
- Of more immediate was the presentation by Gary Kovacs about Collusion the software he created to track “the trackers”. A surprising un-authorized number of organizations track our web browsing. Collusion offers free software to add to your browsers to discover how “tracked” you or your children are.
- Cyber Spy hunter Eric Winsborrow explained the strategies used in the deployment of the virus Stuxnet. This is quite relevant as most industrial companies need to be concerned about SCADA security and manufacturing controllers’ security. How the virus got into the secret Iranian compound (using usb drives dropped on the ground and picked up by personnel who plugged them into their PCs) is an example where proper organizational resilience training may prevent such incidents. Even the best physical or cyber security can be defeated with social/behavior engineering. Winsborrow’s company ZanttZ Inc. has created virtual companies that captures espionage viruses, feeds them fake data and tracks them back to their originator. As Winsborrow joked agent 007 has become completely digital.
- Another interesting technology developped for consumer use but that we could see becoming a security tool improving real time responses to incident is Mozilla’s Popcorn video tool presented by Ryan Merkley. Watch the video and imagine how pre-recorded incident response instructions could be altered with real time data pulled from the web. The add-on can be found here.