Author Archives: Aaron J. Aisen

US Navy

Sometimes Newer Isn’t Always Better: U.S. Navy is Paying Millions to Keep XP

In March 2014, Microsoft announced that it was phasing out support for its Windows XP operating system, including the continued release of patches protecting against hackers and other intrusions. Although the Windows XP platform, originally released  August 24, 2001, has been replaced by updated versions, the United States Navy agreed to pay Microsoft $9 million annually for continued support of the XP program, which runs many of the Navy’s critical systems, including the Space and Navy Warfare Systems Command.  While only 10 percent of government…

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US Capitol

Congress and the Internet of Things

Despite the trend toward the Internet of Things, some institutions are taking a slow and cautious approach given the possible security vulnerabilities. This includes the U.S. Congress. The Internet of Things usually refers to machine to machine communication.  For example, consider the Microsoft band that monitors heart rate, steps, calories, burned, etc. (which, incidentally, the co-chair of the Congressional Internet of Things Caucus wears). Recent breaches into government computers including the massive data breach at the Office of Personnel Management (“OPM”) clearly demonstrate…

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House Committee Leaders Request Information About Cybersecurity for Cars

On May 28, 2015, leaders on the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee from both parties wrote to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and 17 auto manufacturers requesting information about plans to address cybersecurity issues in automobiles. The Committee leadership noted: Connected cars and advancements in vehicle technology present a tremendous opportunity for economic innovation, consumer convenience, and public health and safety. These benefits, however, depend on consumer confidence in the safety and reliability of these technologies. While threats to vehicle technology currently…

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Symantec Issues Threat Report – Cyber Threats on the Increase

Symantec issued its 2014 Internet Threat Security Report (“ITSR” or the “Report”). The Report highlighted some interesting trends including:

  • “60 percent of all targeted attacks struck small- and medium-sized organizations.” In part, this is due to the fact that these “organizations often have fewer resources to invest in security, and many are still not adopting basic best practices like blocking executable files and screensaver email attachments. This puts not only the businesses, but also their business partners, at higher risk.”
  • “Non-targeted attacks still make up

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Cyber Breaches Prompt Government Action

Several government entities are taking action to address the growing rise of cyber-attacks as more fully explained in Goldberg Segalla’s Insurance & Reinsurance Report. As reported in a post by Frederick J. Pomerantz and Aaron J. Aisen, in response to a cyber breach at a major insurer, Connecticut lawmakers are considering legislation requiring insurance companies to encrypt sensitive information.  Furthermore, the Federal Government is considering several proposals  including a Consumer Privacy Bill of Rights and standardized consumer notification procedures.  Similarly, as discussed in…

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NYDFS to Conduct Annual Cyber Assessments on NY Regulated Banks

Governor Andrew Cuomo of New York announced on May 6, 2014 that the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) would begin conducting “new, regular, targeted cyber security preparedness assessments of the banks [NYDFS] regulates.”  Governor Cuomo noted, Targeted cyber security assessments for banks will better safeguard financial institutions from attacks and secure personal bank records from being breached. When consumers sign up for online banking they expect their personal information to be secure and we are working to make sure financial institutions take…

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Don’t Let Love Lead to a Loss

“Better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”  Alfred Lord Tennyson probably did not have computer operating systems in mind when he wrote this famous line. Come April 2014, however, those who aren’t willing to end their love affair with Windows XP may lose big. Windows XP was long the favorite operating system for companies.  However, it was also well-known for its vulnerabilities and that Microsoft actively serviced XP providing patches for these vulnerabilities.  On April 8, 2014, Microsoft…

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It’s a Small World After All – Crimea, Critical Infrastructure, and Cyber Attacks

Worlds away from a quiet ride at a popular amusement park, the world’s eyes are focused on Eastern Europe where a new government has taken over the Ukraine and Crimea is the prize in a fierce geopolitical tug of war.

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