Tag Archives: Law Enforcement

30% of NHS Trusts have experienced a ransomware attack” finds SentinelOne

30% of NHS Trusts in the UK have experienced a ransomware attack, potentially placing patient data and lives at risk. One Trust – the Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust – admitted to being attacked 19 times in just 12 months. These are the findings of a Freedom of Information (FoI) request submitted by SentinelOne.

The Ransomware Research Data Summary explains that SentinelOne made FoI requests to 129 NHS Trusts, of which 94 responded. Three Trusts refused to answer, claiming their response could damage commercial interests. All but two Trusts – Surrey and Sussex and University College London Hospitals – have invested in anti-virus security software on their endpoint devices to protect them from malware.

Despite installing a McAfee solution, Leeds Teaching Hospital has apparently suffered five attacks in the past year.

No Trusts reported paying a ransom or informed law enforcement of the attacks: all preferred to deal with the attacks internally.

Ransomware which encrypts data and demands a ransom to decrypt it has been affecting US hospitals for a while now. The Hollywood Presbyterian Medical Center in Los Angeles notoriously paid cyber criminals £12,000 last February after being infected by Locky, one of the most prolific ransomware variants.

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With the infected computers or networks becoming unusable until a ransom has been paid* or the data has been recovered, it’s clear to see why these types of attack can be a concern for business continuity professionals, with the latest Horizon Scan Report published by the Business Continuity Institute highlighting cyber attacks as the prime concern. This is a very good reason why cyber resilience has been chosen as the theme for Business Continuity Awareness Week in 2017.

“These results are far from surprising,” said Tony Rowan, chief security consultant at SentinelOne. “Public sector organisations make a soft target for fraudsters because budget and resource shortages frequently leave hospitals short changed when it comes to security basics like regular software patching. The results highlight the fact that old school AV technology is powerless to halt virulent, mutating forms of malware like ransomware. A new and more dynamic approach to endpoint protection is needed.”

Rowan continued: “In the past, some NHS Trusts have been singled out by the Information Commissioner’s Office for their poor record on data breaches. With the growth of connected devices like kidney dialysis machines and heart monitors, there’s even a chance that poor security practices could put lives at risk.”

*Note that the data isn’t always recovered even after a ransom has been paid

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Evidence Talks moves to new headquarters in Buckinghamshire

Evidence Talks, the digital forensic specialist business which now provides its services to law enforcement, Government, security operations and corporates all over the world, has moved across Milton Keynes to new premises overlooking Willen Lake.

Recently, the company’s CEO Elizabeth Sheldon and CTO Andrew Sheldon hosted an official opening where a mix of clients, suppliers and staff enjoyed a highly successful networking event.

In a warmly-received welcoming address, Elizabeth Sheldon briefly reviewed the company’s 14-year history, with a record sales year in 2016 the undoubted highlight. Sheldon also commented on the substantial Government contracts won by Evidence Talks in both the UK and the US, with the consequent expansion of the business including five new members of staff and the move to the new headquarters.

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Paying tribute to all the business communities represented at the gathering, Sheldon said: “I would like to thank our customers and suppliers for their support and our members of staff for their professionalism and enthusiasm. We have some of the best digital forensic technology in the world at the moment, and it seems that both the UK and the US Governments agree that we have the ideas, innovation and ability to create the forensic technologies of the future.”

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Evidence Talks launches SPEKTOR Rapid Imager for forensic imaging “at unparalleled speeds”

A global collaboration between digital forensics specialist Evidence Talks and Australia-based Schatz Forensic will afford investigators in law enforcement, Government agencies and Corporate Security Departments the ability to create forensic images significantly faster than when using traditional techniques.

The breakthrough in forensic imaging speed in a triage tool comes as a result of integration between Evidence Talks’ SPEKTOR solution and Schatz Forensic’s next generation forensic imaging technology, named Evimetry. Evimetry is based on the peer-reviewed AFF4 forensic image file format, advanced compression and intelligent sequencing of disk access.

Dr Bradley Schatz, director of Schatz Forensic and an inventor of the AFF4 forensic image format, has a PhD in Digital Forensics, a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, 23 years experience in IT and 13 years in digital forensics. Schatz is a globally recognised leader in forensic research, with appointments across the leading publication venues of the field.

Andrew Sheldon MSc, Chief Technical Officer of Evidence Talks and originator of the SPEKTOR forensic platform, has 37 years of experience in IT, 23 of which have focused on forensic computing. He holds a Masters degree in the discipline from the Centre for Forensic Computing at the Royal Military College of Science, Cranfield University and is a regular speaker at industry events.

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Sheldon commented: “During our research into methods of reducing forensic imaging times, I discovered Dr Schatz and his work on the peer reviewed and forensically sound AFF4 imaging format. Further development of this work by Schatz Forensic was so close to our desired objectives that we approached him to work collaboratively and combine the technology into the SPEKTOR product range. This has accelerated our ability to deliver outstanding performance to a market that’s demanding faster image creation in order to cope with massive increases in target media capacities.”

Exclusive licensing agreement

Now, with an exclusive licensing agreement in the triage space, Evidence Talks is embedding the necessary code across its SPEKTOR product suite. In a recent test, the SPEKTOR Rapid Imager produced a full linear image on a MacBook Air with 120 GB storage in under four minutes. That can be set against the previous timeframe using industry standard tools of some 45 minutes.

SPEKTOR Rapid Imager isn’t just fast when imaging SSD media. It’s optimised for slower systems employing rotational media with tests indicating significant reductions in imaging times.

The new system was launched at the 2016 F3 annual workshop in Gloucester on Tuesday 8 November. Evidence Talks is a founder member of F3, which is a non-profit organisation helping to provide low-cost training for digital forensic practitioners.

Commenting on the product release, Dr Bradley Schatz said: “We recognised very early in discussions with Andrew Sheldon that Evidence Talks had the vision and will to lead the forensic triage market to preserve more evidence in less time. This vision aligns perfectly with that of Schatz Forensic. The seamless integration of SPEKTOR and the Evimetry imager engine provides a dramatic increase in digital forensic triage performance which will have immediate and measurable benefits for end users.”

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Genetec unveils collaborative case management system to improve investigation workflows

Genetec, a leading provider of open architecture IP security solutions, has developed Genetec Clearance, a case management system specifically designed to speed up investigations by allowing different organisations to collect, manage and share video evidence and other relevant case information.

Genetec Clearance is expected to be available in Q4 2016 via subscription, through certified Genetec channel partners and resellers.

Genetec Clearance allows police officers, investigators and security managers to gather digital evidence from a variety of sources (such as Genetec’s Security Center and other video management systems, body-worn devices, in-car systems and mobile phone footage from bystanders and witnesses) and easily store, manage, review and share it from within a single application.

Genetec Clearance enables collaboration across independent agencies and private sector organisations. All pertinent files related to cases (video files as well as audio, images and documents, etc) are centralised and can be securely shared between investigators or requested by third parties without needing to physically ship or deliver the recordings.

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As the application is not licensed per seat, access can be shared with as many users as needed without incurring any additional fees. With built-in video redaction (patent pending), the privacy of bystanders can be protected by allowing identifiable information to be masked before sending video to other stakeholders. All user actions initiated within the system, whether internal or external, are automatically tracked to ensure the chain of custody of the evidence is maintained at all times.

“The increased evidence that’s now available from video surveillance systems, body-worn cameras and witnesses can help solve crimes,” explained Erick Ceresato, product manager at Genetec. “However, the sheer amount of data to be managed can also become cumbersome to process and review, in turn increasing the time spent on case preparation rather than the investigation itself. That’s why we’ve developed a case management system to help automate certain tasks that are frequently performed on a manual basis and to facilitate collaboration between law enforcement, corporate security departments, legal entities and the public.”

Today’s organisations are looking at ways to streamline their evidence sharing process while maintaining stringent audit capabilities. The growing volume of video recordings has become increasingly complex to manage and it’s important for users to collaborate while also maintaining a clear chain of custody. As Genetec Clearance supports many common video codecs, video evidence can easily be reviewed, while also eliminating the time-consuming manual process of video codec conversion.

Designed as an open platform, Genetec Clearance APIs can be used to integrate with third party systems and automate the upload of video recordings and associated metadata to be reviewed within the system. Integration with Record Management Systems enables law enforcement departments to automate the creation of new cases with their existing record system, thereby reducing the need for duplicate data entry.

Genetec Clearance is available on a subscription basis and includes access to all the latest software updates and features. Updates are automated within the system as they become available, requiring no additional intervention from the client’s own staff.

*For more information on Genetec Clearance visit www.genetec.com

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Digital Barriers wins new US contracts worth combined total of $6.8 million

Digital Barriers, the specialist provider of visually intelligent solutions to the global surveillance, security and safety markets, has announced a number of new contracts for its EdgeVis Live technology that have been signed this month.

The company has agreed deals with two different flagship US federal law enforcement agencies worth a combined $6.8 million. In addition, it has secured a £2.0 million contract extension with BT Redcare, under which its class-leading EdgeVis Live wireless video surveillance products are marketed as ‘Redcare View’.

Digital Barriers’ EdgeVis Live surveillance technology offers secure distribution of real-time video from anywhere to anywhere, featuring end-to-end security, real world resilience and network optimisation that can stream usable live video using 60% less bandwidth than standard technologies.

It delivers significant capability benefits and material cost savings over competing technologies, and has now been sold into many of the world’s leading law enforcement and defence agencies. 

Zak Doffman, CEO of Digital Barriers, commented: “The scale of these contract awards clearly demonstrates the significant technical lead that EdgeVis Live enjoys over its competition and the value of last year’s acquisition of Brimtek in enhancing our market position and credibility across the US law enforcement landscape. EdgeVis Live continues to build market share among flagship US agencies, in turn providing us with a strong platform for material future growth.”

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Zaun Group embarks on diplomatic mission

A fictional embassy secured by an integrated perimeter protection solution from the Zaun Group was the stand-out highlight of the 2016 Security and Policing Show.

The embassy mock-up was constructed with input from the Metropolitan Police Service’s Security Liaison Unit and Parliamentary and Diplomatic Protection, which advises on the protection of embassies and other diplomatic missions.

Show visitors raved about the mock-up, which was designed to give a realistic impression of the many security elements deployed to protect diplomats and the buildings that they use.

Staff staged mock scenarios including a full security lockdown to make the live experience even more realistic at the annual UK Government security show, which was held at the FIVE venue in Farnborough from 8-10 March.

It’s the UK’s only security event aimed at police, law enforcement and security professionals specifically tasked with security, civil protection and national resilience.

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The Zaun Group pitched its integrated high security perimeter systems from a combined stand (B47) that housed a working demonstration including an SR2-rated gate, electric fencing, perimeter intrusion detection systems, CCTV and video analytics, prison mesh and post systems complete with razor coil toppings.

The centrepiece embassy mock-up demonstrated far more coherently the integrated approach that the Zaun Group can offer, with both Perimeter Security Suppliers Association-verified products and installations.

The comprehensive solution included Zaun’s most intruder-resistant fencing, ArmaWeave, FST prison toppings from Binns, electric fencing and PIDs from Harper Chalice and multi-megapixel and HD video evidence from a series of HD CCTV cameras recorded and managed by EyeLynx’s SharpView intelligent video surveillance system.

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Over 350 companies exhibited at the event, showcasing world-leading technologies, products and solutions. It’s very much a cornerstone of the UK’s security event calendar.

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NICE Systems launches digital policing solution to help law enforcement agencies close cases on faster timescales

NICE Investigate automates and expedites the entire digital investigation process, in turn leading to more effective evidence processing and facilitating successful prosecutions.

Police departments everywhere are investing in digital policing initiatives to better safeguard the public. Yet the exponential growth in digital data energised by an increasing number of sources, such as body-worn cameras and private and public CCTV footage, now presents the challenge of how to effectively process all of this ‘siloed’ information.

NICE Investigate, a new digital policing solution from NICE Systems, breaks down information silos and replaces lengthy, manual processes with automated workflows to expedite the entire digital investigation process. This goes well beyond the capabilities of the digital evidence management solutions in use today. NICE Investigate streamlines the collection, organisation and sharing of potential evidence such that investigators can make sense of disparate data.

“Investigators face some tough challenges,” noted Ed Davis, a former Boston Police Commissioner. “Collecting and securely sharing potential evidence is surprisingly manual and time-consuming, while analysing the disparate pieces to recreate the ‘Who, What, Where, When and Why’ of an incident is more complicated than ever. A software solution that addresses these issues and leads to higher case clearance rates would be invaluable to any police department.”

Identifying, collecting and copying digital evidence

“Today’s investigators inevitably spend too much time identifying, collecting and copying digital evidence from various sources, including video from citizens, private and public sector CCTV video, audio recordings, photos and more,” stated Chris Wooten, executive vice-president at NICE Systems. They often lack the tools needed to organise and make sense of all the different pieces of information.”

Wooten continued: “At the same time, budgets are flat and workloads are increasing. Inefficient processes threaten to delay investigations, incident resolution and prosecution. NICE has now leveraged its experience of working with thousands of police departments and its expertise in information management for emergency communications centres to develop a solution that addresses these issues.”

NICE Investigate improves investigator efficiency and effectiveness through four core capabilities:

*Compatibility with multiple evidence sources

NICE Investigate integrates data from most existing applications and sources, including CAD and RMS systems, body camera video, physical evidence like photos and documents, public and private CCTV video, in-car video, interview recordings, citizen tips, audio recordings, gunshot detection systems, automated license plate readers, social media and more. This enables police departments to collapse information silos, choose Best-in-Class systems from leading providers and protect their investment in existing systems

*Automated workflow

The solution expedites criminal case building by organising evidence into a digital case folder, using a powerful correlation engine to suggest potential evidence and enabling investigators to electronically initiate requests for evidence and evidence processing

*Content analytics and visualisation

Content analytics examines digital content from connected sources. Visual tools display the information, making important patterns and relationships easier to understand. By uncovering more relevant information and visualising it in useful ways, crimes that would otherwise go unsolved can be successfully prosecuted

*Secure collaboration and sharing

Investigators can easily and securely share evidence electronically, enabling multiple investigators within an agency or across agencies to collaborate on a case while maintaining the chain of custody and integrity of the evidence. Investigators no longer have to waste valuable time copying and transporting digital evidence for prosecutors.

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