Tag: north korea

Attention #CEO, is your #network #Secure? #Sony thought so!

Attention #CEO, is your #network #Secure? #Sony thought so!

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I received an email from someone asking me about the internet outage in North Korea.

Firstly, if we, (America) had anything to do with it, I think it analogous to punishing a pugnacious brat, by taking away their computer. This kid really needs a good spanking!  For you who think that corporal punishment belongs in the dark ages, well you’re wrong, unless of course you consider North Korea is still in the Dark Ages!

This country, as stated in another blog; keeps its people in the dark.  Looking at a picture from space one can tell that electricity is not even well distributed much less the internet or the free exchange of information and thoughts.

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Contained inside the Red Outline is North Korea. 

If you want to control a people, take away weapons, power, their ability to communicate with others, and feed them a constant feed of Bullshit daily!  Prevarication is called for if you want a submissive people who will do what you say without question.

The people of this country are brainwashed into “loving their dear leader” and believe anything that they are told.  Any type of truculence on their part is met with swift, brutal retaliation.  

If the evidence indeed points to North Korea in the attack of Sony, (the only people with motive,) Most assuredly, there was someone on the inside at Sony. Sony should be looking real hard with forensic experts to determine what happened!

As a security geek, I would love to be part of that team!

The sad truth today is that there could be a spook!   Money talks, with our lack of morality on the rise, it could be anyone.

Most firewalls today are pretty good at keeping bad people out so, planting a spook or a Trojan or worm of some kind on the inside of the firewall, enabling communication from the outside through some spoofed port that is normally open like 80, would have to be employed.

Many of the remote control desktop software out there today which some people use, violate all security protocols.  The problem is that a lot of companies don’t hire a security officer or have a limited IT staff who are too busy resetting passwords and posting on Facebook to be bothered with doing nothing more than putting out fires.

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If you look at the OSI model (which I dare say few are familiar with, consist of 7 layers.  The OSI model (open system interconnection model) is a packet-based structure of layers, or protocol stack.

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  • Starting at layer one, we have the physical layer which is basically your cable and associated hardware which allows your computer to communicate with the host.  This layer is responsible for the “frame bit.”
  • Layer two is the layer that established the protocol used to communicate whether it is frame relay or Ethernet or what have you. This layer is called the data link layer.
  • Layer three is known as the network layer and is responsible for transmitting data from node to node. This layer provides switching and routing information.
  • Layer four or transport layer is responsible for such things as error recovery and end to end flow control.
  • Layer five or session layer sets up, coordinates, and terminates conversations, exchanges, and dialogues between the applications.
  • Layer six or presentation layer works to transform data into the form that the application layer can accept.
  • Layer  seven or application layer is just that  Everything at this layer is application-specific. This layer provides application services for file transfers, e-mail, browser, Google, and other network software services, and yes, Facebook.  This is the layer that the end user has the most to do with in that applications exist solely at this level.

Now that you have a small idea of how one communicates over the internet, looking at this model, how would you interrupt traffic between them and us?

Keep in mind that North Korea gets internet from China and most probably through a Russian satellite. Neither of these do we have control over, so pulling the plug leaves out the physical layer.

Again, I could not use layer two; as again I don’t have control over that either. 

Ah, now layer three I do have control over.  What if I change their known ip addresses to non internet routable or private, much like the 192,172 or 10 subnets?  Now they have to go to Russia or China and beg for another subnet and… as soon as they do, we kill that as well.

Why do we have private addresses you ask?  Most reading this far probably already know this however, there are simply not enough addresses to give every company that wants one, a block of private addresses.

If you look at RFC 1918 a private addresses scheme was created that are not assigned meaning, that they cannot route through the internet.  In this way business’s and homes and even North Korea can use them to their hearts content, on their private networks and then using something called NAT or network address translation can make your home computer look as though it is talking on a public address.

This BLOG’s intent is to underscore the need to have a good CIO and a good security officer.  Your company could be the next Sony and as you can see, if some rogue country like North Korea who has a very limited pool of talent can take down a giant like Sony, just think what a Russia or China or other country who does not stagnate its citizens, and keep them in the stone age could do.

-Best to you and those that you care about and if I don’t get to write again by ChristmasHave a Merry Christmas!

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Nobody Wins

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We live in a world today that is much more hostile than yesterday, “speaking figuratively.”

We have an economy that is literally based on a house of cards for a foundation. The Feds are printing $40B a month ($1.1trillion a year) saturating our economy, devaluing our currency with every dollar that they print. With oil based on the US dollar, is it any wonder why gas cost so much? The “booming economy” is most certainly the same today as the dot com fiasco of a few years ago, when Enron was in the news.

We are not the only country playing this game, others including China are as well.

The economy is based on fabrications and we might as well try and spend monopoly money as that is what your greenback may very well look like in the not too distant future.

Those who survive this will most likely be that small subset of humanity who “lives off the grid” as it were. The people who live in the inner cities and who depend on the government for their existence will be in trouble when this house of cards falls. The Farmers in this country and others may survive as they know how to live without going to the local grocery store every other day for something. They also see the inside of a restaurant far less than the folks in the inner city as they simply don’t enjoy the disposable income that others do. When the bible talks about the meek inheriting the earth, one can’t help but wonder if he is talking about the farmers.

On top of the shaky economy we have small countries with the keys to Nukes! There are no winners if someone drops a nuke. Our defenses have most certainly been hardened to sustain an EMP, and a retaliation of biblical proportions would most certainly follow.

This exchange would involve other nations who have nukes as they will have certainly picked a side. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” While I have full confidence in the American Military and their ability to intercept any missile headed this way; the following actions would have serious repercussions worldwide.

Any exchange of missiles with the US would not only devastate the offending country (s); I am certain it would also trigger an economic meltdown worldwide. Everyone looses. Never mind the radiation that would be released to poison every man women and child in the entire world, as well the animals and vegetation.

I can visualize that last man standing, holding the key to a spent nuke, standing next to the shell of building, scorched from fire, with dead creatures and plant life all around him, with radioactive ash falling from the sky, declaring victory; as the blisters from radiation sickness bubble up on his body. We are truly that foolish! Nobody Wins!

When E=MC2 was discovered, Einstein wrote an impassioned letter to the president urging him not to use the bomb. That letter and is German heritage earned him a one way ticket out of the program. Oppenhiemer and others took over, and of course the rest is history. A nuclear device of a relatively low efficiency was created and dropped on our enemy, twice. If those were of a low efficiency, can you imagine what is around today?

An alliance of the superpowers is critical to keeping the peace, and our current administration does not seem to embrace that. Foreign policy is critical at this stage of the “game.” America needs to sort out who its friends are relatively quickly, and form that alliance that was so strong under previous administrations.

In retrospect, what is important to you? Is having a lot of money in the bank important? Is having a lot of gold in some small vault in your house important? What about food, water and guns? Add whisky and cigarettes to the food and water and you may have something. Why? That may very well be the new currency, if this comes down badly. Keep a good supply of your personal medications on hand; several days if not weeks of fresh water, and having some gas stored somewhere may not be a bad idea either. If they are that stupid to launch nukes, it really doesn’t make much difference. There will be no survivors, other than the cockroach. Mutually assured destruction, either by nukes or the economy or both; is not a cheery outcome.

While it is my fervent prayer that no one is stupid enough to pull the trigger, North Korea continues to be very provocative in its talks with media and other news outlets. Today they gave the Brits till the 10th to get out of their country. What will be the spark?

-Best to you and those that you care about!