Quantum Skepticism

Quantum computing gives us a way in theory to quickly crack certain types of cryptography. Well-funded startups are working on prototype quantum circuits, as are big guns like Intel, Microsoft, and IBM. Success could render a lot of today’s encryption obsolete. In theory. Academic and industrial research labs have built basic quantum circuits. If Moore’s … Continue reading Quantum Skepticism →
Read more

Two Longs and a Short

By Dick Pence This story appeared in The Washington Post in 1991, shortly after a computer glitch caused a “long-distance blackout” on the East Coast. Those big phone outages of the past couple of weeks have had me feeling a bit guilty over what’s been happening. You see, I remember exactly how all this started. … Continue reading Two Longs and a Short →
Read more

The Big Bug in the News: the WPA2 flaw

The big news this week is a protocol flaw in the Wireless Protected Access protocol, version 2 (WPA2). The Ars Technica article covers the details pretty well. This is what every Wi-Fi wireless router on the planet uses these days. The problem does not directly damage your system, but it can uncover data you had intended … Continue reading The Big Bug in the News: the WPA2 flaw →
Read more

Comparing Leaks: Trump vs. Hillary

As I said in an earlier post, no crime is committed if the appropriate official leaks sensitive classified information. This applies to both Secretary Clinton’s email server and President Trump’s unfortunate meeting with Russian diplomats. Both carried the authority to disclose what they disclosed. One question remains: what damage might have ensued from each leak? I would argue … Continue reading Comparing Leaks: Trump vs. Hillary →
Read more

Tiptoeing Through Vulnerabilities

I sympathize with developers who throw up their hands and say, “I don’t do security stuff.” No matter what you choose, there’s a trade off that could go wrong. It’s especially troublesome if one deploys a “security website.” I’ve deployed security education websites in many environments over the past 20 years, and I rarely achieve … Continue reading Tiptoeing Through Vulnerabilities →
Read more

Cryptosmith Video Series #1 through #15

I have posted the fifteenth video in the Cryptosmith Series on practical basic cryptography. The video collection falls into three parts: the network crypto introduction, the DVD example, and the public-key certificate discussion. There are also updates to other series videos. They now use the acronym “SSL” a lot more, since people recognize it more often than “TLS.” … Continue reading Cryptosmith Video Series #1 through #15 →
Read more

Cryptosmith Video Series

The Cryptosmith video series uses animation to explain well-known crypto techniques. This should help more people understand crypto technology. This is particularly important as people rely more and more on mobile and Internet security mechanisms. Aside from protecting online commerce and financial activities, many professionals are realizing that their daily activities require strong protection. [UPDATE: … Continue reading Cryptosmith Video Series →
Read more

#PodestaEmails are NOT obvious fakes

Emails are notoriously hard to validate. Emails are like typed, signed contracts with no section or page numbers: you can take out or add whatever pages you want as long as you keep the signatures. Intelligence expert Malcom Nance has tweeted that Wikileaks’ recent collection of Podesta emails contain “obvious forgeries.” It is hard to detect emails forgeries … Continue reading #PodestaEmails are NOT obvious fakes →
Read more

Election Crypto Conspiracy Theory

I’m not often a fan of conspiracy theories, except for entertainment value. This one is interesting because it combines international intrigue, the elections, and our world of notoriously poor email security. The conspiracy arises from foreigners trying to influence the United States election. They spy on unprotected emails and leak the contents to influence US … Continue reading Election Crypto Conspiracy Theory →
Read more
Page 1 of 212