Welcome!

Microservices Expo Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: Cloud Security

Cloud Security: Article

Focus on Cyber-Crime Misses Real Threat

Vendors hyping cyber-crime missing potential for state sponsored threats

Security Journal on Ulitzer

Thanks to tough economic times and a generous dollop of fear-mongering from the media and opportunistic profiteers, we've all become myopically obsessed with cyber-crime.

This is not entirely a bad thing. Unless you've been living under a rock, everyone knows that technology has created unimaginable opportunity for resourceful crooks. The pitfall is in our myopia. But we've become so obsessed with cyber-crime-a "petty" offense in the grand scheme of things-that we've overlooked the bigger picture. While monetary gains are certainly a big motivator for cybercrime, increasingly cyber-criminals are acting out of political interests. Thus, it is important for IT departments to be aware that threats can come from anywhere.

A recent article in the New York Times reminded us of a conspicuously under-reported digital security threat: cyber-terrorism. Dennis Blair, the Director of National Intelligence, made the following comment in an appearance before the U.S. Congress:

"Malicious cyberactivity is occurring on an unprecedented scale with extraordinary sophistication."

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also recently shed light on the critical nature of this global issue when she urged NATO members to modernize and strengthen their alliance to combat cyber-terrorism.

These are important reminders that all cyber-threats are not strictly for money and are certainly not all commercial. In fact, there is good reason to believe that the largest increase in systems security vulnerabilities will occur as a result of political, not criminal, activity.

Politics in this context can be defined as the creation, distribution, and maintenance of power across some group of people. On the Web, as we have seen with the alleged Chinese attacks on Google, the struggle is over the power of information.

The point is that politically motivated attacks are fundamentally different. Governments, even small ones, have vastly more resources than your average "cyber-criminal", who may actually some script-kiddie in a basement in Wisconsin. The Google attack was on a huge scale, and also highly coordinated, and was executed with, dare I say it, "military" precision.

This new brand of digital threat takes advantage of a weakness in the hierarchy of law. Most of what we're exposed to is either civil law (like lawsuits, generally) or criminal law (the kind we need police to enforce). This new form of atatck however, runs up against international law. While I am not a lawyer, the principal issues with international law are that it is both ill-defined and expensive (or impossible) to enforce.

The threat is real, and the threat is growing. Companies, organizations and governments need to be aware of commercial AND political threats to their critical digital infrastructure.

The increased nature of the geopolitical cyber-threat says something about the current, often hysterical, narrative floating around the industry about "cyber-crime". I have to admit, "cyber-crime" is getting some traction in the media, as a cyber-crime story even appeared on NPR's Fresh Air show.

Playing on the hysteria in the media, a number of competitors in our market, the Log Management space, are shamelessly hyping the dangers of cyber-crime to degrees that border on the irresponsible. Yes, it is true that we need to be aware of hackers who want to steal our data-either for monetary or political reasons. But despite what a vendor may tell you, true systems security is reliant on people, products and processes; it's not just about one single product that will magically solve all the world's security problems.

The fact of the matter is that bad things happen. You will be hacked. You may have already been hacked and not know it. A rational organization will do three things.

First, put up the best defenses you can. Make sure that you are putting the resources you already have, such as log files, to the best possible use. Start with the basics, like log management, before moving on to supplemental technologies like SIEM. Do your research and buy the best security products that suit your needs and your budget.

Second, implement the best people-processes you can. Recent studies have shown that most data-loss or security-break incidents come from people who are or have been on the inside.

Finally, you will be hacked. Accept the fact and prepare of it. Be ready to clean up and perform forensics when you do get hacked, because one way or another, it will happen.

The number and kinds of attacks on your critical IT infrastructure are increasing. While you may see attacks from one vector decrease, the number of new attack vectors in increasing. Attention by the US Government, and the Google attack from China clearly reinforce this. We must all remain vigilant, now more than ever.

More Stories By Bill Roth

Bill Roth is a Silicon Valley veteran with over 20 years in the industry. He has played numerous product marketing, product management and engineering roles at companies like BEA, Sun, Morgan Stanley, and EBay Enterprise. He was recently named one of the World's 30 Most Influential Cloud Bloggers.

@MicroservicesExpo Stories
Building custom add-ons does not need to be limited to the ideas you see on a marketplace. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sukhbir Dhillon, CEO and founder of Addteq, will go over some adventures they faced in developing integrations using Atlassian SDK and other technologies/platforms and how it has enabled development teams to experiment with newer paradigms like Serverless and newer features of Atlassian SDKs. In this presentation, you will be taken on a journey of Add-On and Integration ...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership abi...
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to transi...
Without a clear strategy for cost control and an architecture designed with cloud services in mind, costs and operational performance can quickly get out of control. To avoid multiple architectural redesigns requires extensive thought and planning. Boundary (now part of BMC) launched a new public-facing multi-tenant high resolution monitoring service on Amazon AWS two years ago, facing challenges and learning best practices in the early days of the new service.
All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the work...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm.
As software becomes more and more complex, we, as software developers, have been splitting up our code into smaller and smaller components. This is also true for the environment in which we run our code: going from bare metal, to VMs to the modern-day Cloud Native world of containers, schedulers and micro services. While we have figured out how to run containerized applications in the cloud using schedulers, we've yet to come up with a good solution to bridge the gap between getting your contain...
As organizations realize the scope of the Internet of Things, gaining key insights from Big Data, through the use of advanced analytics, becomes crucial. However, IoT also creates the need for petabyte scale storage of data from millions of devices. A new type of Storage is required which seamlessly integrates robust data analytics with massive scale. These storage systems will act as “smart systems” provide in-place analytics that speed discovery and enable businesses to quickly derive meaningf...
DevOps is often described as a combination of technology and culture. Without both, DevOps isn't complete. However, applying the culture to outdated technology is a recipe for disaster; as response times grow and connections between teams are delayed by technology, the culture will die. A Nutanix Enterprise Cloud has many benefits that provide the needed base for a true DevOps paradigm. In his Day 3 Keynote at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Brown, a Solutions Marketing Manager at Nutanix, will explore t...
DevOps has often been described in terms of CAMS: Culture, Automation, Measuring, Sharing. While we’ve seen a lot of focus on the “A” and even on the “M”, there are very few examples of why the “C" is equally important in the DevOps equation. In her session at @DevOps Summit, Lori MacVittie, of F5 Networks, explored HTTP/1 and HTTP/2 along with Microservices to illustrate why a collaborative culture between Dev, Ops, and the Network is critical to ensuring success.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
Everyone wants to use containers, but monitoring containers is hard. New ephemeral architecture introduces new challenges in how monitoring tools need to monitor and visualize containers, so your team can make sense of everything. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, David Gildeh, co-founder and CEO of Outlyer, will go through the challenges and show there is light at the end of the tunnel if you use the right tools and understand what you need to be monitoring to successfully use containers in your...
What if you could build a web application that could support true web-scale traffic without having to ever provision or manage a single server? Sounds magical, and it is! In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Chris Munns, Senior Developer Advocate for Serverless Applications at Amazon Web Services, will show how to build a serverless website that scales automatically using services like AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, and Amazon S3. We will review several frameworks that can help you build serverle...
The IT industry is undergoing a significant evolution to keep up with cloud application demand. We see this happening as a mindset shift, from traditional IT teams to more well-rounded, cloud-focused job roles. The IT industry has become so cloud-minded that Gartner predicts that by 2020, this cloud shift will impact more than $1 trillion of global IT spending. This shift, however, has left some IT professionals feeling a little anxious about what lies ahead. The good news is that cloud computin...
SYS-CON Events announced today that HTBase will exhibit at SYS-CON's 20th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. HTBase (Gartner 2016 Cool Vendor) delivers a Composable IT infrastructure solution architected for agility and increased efficiency. It turns compute, storage, and fabric into fluid pools of resources that are easily composed and re-composed to meet each application’s needs. With HTBase, companies can quickly prov...
An overall theme of Cloud computing and the specific practices within it is fundamentally one of automation. The core value of technology is to continually automate low level procedures to free up people to work on more value add activities, ultimately leading to the utopian goal of full Autonomic Computing. For example a great way to define your plan for DevOps tool chain adoption is through this lens. In this TechTarget article they outline a simple maturity model for planning this.
While DevOps most critically and famously fosters collaboration, communication, and integration through cultural change, culture is more of an output than an input. In order to actively drive cultural evolution, organizations must make substantial organizational and process changes, and adopt new technologies, to encourage a DevOps culture. Moderated by Andi Mann, panelists discussed how to balance these three pillars of DevOps, where to focus attention (and resources), where organizations might...
The rise of containers and microservices has skyrocketed the rate at which new applications are moved into production environments today. While developers have been deploying containers to speed up the development processes for some time, there still remain challenges with running microservices efficiently. Most existing IT monitoring tools don’t actually maintain visibility into the containers that make up microservices. As those container applications move into production, some IT operations t...
For organizations that have amassed large sums of software complexity, taking a microservices approach is the first step toward DevOps and continuous improvement / development. Integrating system-level analysis with microservices makes it easier to change and add functionality to applications at any time without the increase of risk. Before you start big transformation projects or a cloud migration, make sure these changes won’t take down your entire organization.
Software development is a moving target. You have to keep your eye on trends in the tech space that haven’t even happened yet just to stay current. Consider what’s happened with augmented reality (AR) in this year alone. If you said you were working on an AR app in 2015, you might have gotten a lot of blank stares or jokes about Google Glass. Then Pokémon GO happened. Like AR, the trends listed below have been building steam for some time, but they’ll be taking off in surprising new directions b...