Tag Archives: Iran

BlackBerry Cylance outlines cyber security predictions for 2020

Josh Lemos, vice-president of research and intelligence at BlackBerry Cylance, has put forward some predictions on cyber security trends for 2020 that will impact Governments and companies across a variety of industry sectors.

(1) Uncommon attack techniques will emerge in common software

Steganography, the process of hiding files in a different format, will grow in popularity as online blogs make it possible for threat actors to grasp the technique. Recent research at BlackBerry found malicious payloads residing in WAV audio files, which have been used for decades and categorised as benign.

Businesses will begin to recalibrate how legacy software is defined and treated and effectively invest in operational security around them. Companies will look for ways in which to secure less commonly weaponised file formats, like JPEG, PNG and GIF, etc without hindering users as they navigate the modern computing platforms.

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(2) Changing network topologies challenge traditional assumptions and require new security models

Network-based threats that can compromise the availability and integrity of 5G networks will push Governments and enterprises alike to adopt cyber security strategies as they implement the 5G spectrum. As cities, towns and Government agencies continue to overhaul their networks, sophisticated attackers will begin to tap into software vulnerabilities as the expansion of bandwidth that 5G requires inevitably creates a larger attack surface.

Governments and enterprises will need to retool their network, device and application security. We will see many lean towards a zero-trust approach for identity and authorisation on a 5G network.

Threat detection and threat intelligence will need to be driven by Artificial Intelligence and machine learning to keep up.

(3) 2020 will see more cyber-physical convergence

As all sectors increasingly rely on smart technology to operate and function, the gap between the cyber and the physical will officially converge. This is evident given the recent software bug in an Ohio power plant that affected hospitals, police departments, subway systems and more in both the US and Canada.

Attacks on Internet of Things (IoT) devices will have a domino effect and leaders will be challenged to think of unified cyber-physical security in a hybrid threat landscape.

Cyber security will begin to be built into advanced technologies by design to keep pace with the speed of IoT convergence and the vulnerabilities that come with it. 

(4) State and state-sponsored cyber groups alike are the new proxy for international relations

Cyber espionage has been going on since the introduction of the Internet, with Russia, China, Iran and North Korea seen as major players. In 2020, we will see a new set of countries using the same tactics, techniques and procedures as these superpowers operate against rivals both inside and outside of national borders.

Mobile cyber espionage will also become a more common threat vector as mobile users are a significant attack vector for organisations that allow employees to use personal devices on company networks.

We will see threat actors perform cross-platform campaigns that leverage both mobile and traditional desktop malware. Recent research discovered nation state-based mobile cyber espionage activity across ‘The Big 4’, as well as in Vietnam. There’s likely to be more attacks coming in the future. This will create more complexity for Governments and enterprises as they try to attribute these attacks, with more actors and more endpoints in play at a larger scale.

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BSIA member companies report on “successful” Intersec 2016

Members of the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) have returned from Intersec reporting a successful exhibition for UK companies.

The three-day show – held at the Dubai World Trade Centre between 17 and 19 January – is seen by many as the most important security exhibition in the Middle East region. The event plays a pivotal role in enabling UK companies to meet with potential customers, existing distributors or partners and serves as a platform for launching new products into the Middle East market.

Intersec has been a key fixture for many BSIA members who exhibit year-on-year, and the show continues to attract new exhibitors keen to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the event.

One BSIA member company, RGL Electronics Ltd, has already been active in the Middle East for a number of years and attended Intersec 2016 as an exhibitor for the first time.

Geoff Jones, director of RGL Electronics Ltd, said: “By exhibiting at Intersec this year, we had the opportunity to be in front of the people that really matter, and we were able to build upon what’s already a major marketplace for the RGL brand.”

Jones continued: “We showcased our range of access control products and a disabled toilet alarm, all of which attracted a good response from visitors. Indeed, the quality of the contacts we made on site was very high, and I fully anticipate that some of these contacts will develop into orders over the coming months.”

He concluded: “Something that struck me during the show was how much larger the scale of the projects in the Middle East are compared to those in Europe. The sheer scale of the developments in the Middle East offer promising opportunities for RGL and, indeed, other UK companies.”

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Excellence in design and innovation

Much of the interest in UK security products in the Middle East comes from the long history of excellence in design and innovation. This was certainly evident at Intersec.

Storm Interface – another BSIA member company – launched its Storm S60 range of mullion format readers at the show and duly received a fantastic response from prospective customers.

Peter Jarvis, senior executive vice-president at Storm Interface, commented: “The response to the Storm S60 was absolutely astonishing. When developing the product, we found that there was a real need for a solution that wouldn’t affect the aesthetics of landmark buildings where, typically, you wouldn’t want to drill into the building materials to affix a traditional reader. The S60 has been designed so that it can fit into a door frame, thus removing the need to attach it to glass, marble or other similar materials.”

Jarvis added: “We’ve found that there’s a real demand in the Middle East for products that meet the design specifications of landmark buildings, and particularly so in Dubai.”

In conclusion, Jarvis told Risk UK: “Our attendance at Intersec has been particularly successful. We’ve been able to talk to all of our target contacts, including existing distributors in the UAE and the regional managers responsible for some of our recently-agreed distribution partnerships.”

Variety of international visitors

A large part of the attraction for UK companies to exhibit at Intersec is the sheer variety of international visitors attending the show, both from the wider Middle East and further afield.

John Davies, managing director of TDSi and chairman of the BSIA’s Export Council, said: “TDSi had a highly successful appearance at Intersec 2016. We gained 30% extra visitors compared to the previous year, some of which came from a wide range of countries including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Iran and Turkey, as well as further afield from Angola, India and Sri Lanka. The overall quality of visitors at the show was excellent. The majority of people we spoke to were working on active projects, so we enjoyed both productive and substantive conversations on all three days.”

Davies continued: “Our integration to wireless access control products from ASSA ABLOY and Simons Voss created a lot of interest on our stand, as did our new Time and Attendance software packages. Visitors were also drawn to our new reader range, both for the aesthetics and the functional multi-technology capability. As always, our strength in terms of being able to offer open platforms for security integration proved very popular with visitors to the stand.”

In conclusion, Davies told Risk UK: “We were delighted to receive confirmation of a project win in Abu Dhabi at Intersec 2016 and expect to close projects in Kuwait, Saudi and Qatar within the next few weeks as a result of conversations at the show.”

Uplift in validated leads

Remsdaq also experienced an uplift in validated leads, estimating that the business recorded approximately 25% more than last year.

Alan Hardy, EMEA sales manager, explained: “It was an extremely satisfying exhibition with unprecedented numbers of good quality contacts visiting our stand. There was an extremely positive reaction from all visitors to our EntroWatch, EntroStar and EntroPad range of access control solutions and considerable interest shown for StarWatch, our enterprise product range, as well as Sabre, our fibre optic perimeter intrusion detection products. We’re confident that our business in the region will increase significantly as a direct result of our participation in the show.”

Texecom also found the show to be a great platform for demonstrating its professional electronic security solutions – including the Premier Elite Series – to the Middle East and beyond.

Clym Brown, the company’s marketing director, explained: “We see themes from Intersec that resonate with global market challenges – the proliferation of advanced wireless security devices, home network and smart phone connectivity for users taking control of their own security and increased connectivity and integrated features for both commercial and security applications. At Texecom, our product range caters for small, low-risk applications right through to high risk, high value and complex installations. At Intersec, we found our breadth of system offerings, using the same architecture and programming structure throughout, was really well received by visitors looking to provide the highest levels of security for a wide range of applications.”

Excellent representation from the UK

73 UK companies took advantage of the many benefits that come with exhibiting as part of the UK Pavilion, which was organised by the BSIA.

Benefits included a prominent stand position in the main section of the show, logistical and on-site support, hassle-free stand design and build and increased exposure to visitors through a strong UK brand presence.

Peter Jarvis commented: “We’ve been really impressed with the level of support that the BSIA has provided, both before and during Intersec. An association with the BSIA is absolutely essential at these types of exhibition. The BSIA’s excellent organisation of the UK Pavilion this year in 2016 has freed us up to come here and do what we need to. In short, meet with target contacts, promote our products and make valuable sales.”

*The BSIA is also organising UK Pavilions at Security Essen and IFSEC South-East Asia, both of which run in September 2016. For more information, or to enquire about exhibiting as part of the UK Pavilion, please contact the BSIA by calling: 0845 389 3889 or send an e-mail to: d.wood@bsia.co.uk

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