Sci-fi often portrays artificial intelligence (AI) like this: a computer watches people for a while, blinks darkly and decides the solution to the world’s problems is to kill off the human race. Thankfully we are far away from that. But what AI is capable of today is simulating a specific human brain function – such as pattern recognition. And that’s very exciting for security.
AI makes security practical in the open world
The world is now open, causing disruption in many industries and changing the demands on security.
Picture Bob. He thinks he’s figured out how to avoid paying for cable TV by watching programs streamed from pirate websites. One day, he’s watching a live football broadcast and ten minutes into the game, he loses all access. His screen goes blank. Is ruining the user experience on pirated sites a new combat strategy?
Seeing it differently
Degrading user experience may not be the first thing that comes to mind when considering how to combat cybercrime.
Statistically every person in the world between 15 to 64 years old has a smartphone or tablet today. In the next 5 years for every baby born 10 smartphones will be sold1. Smartphones have literally changed our lives, from playing, working to everyday living. But what can we learn from app developers, who’ve made mobile devices so powerful?
Learning from app developers
With 102 billion mobile app downloads to date – averaging 22 apps per device2 – it’s clear that software developers know what they are doing.
A friend of mine once told me that software engineers are fashionistas at heart. Instead of trying to out dress each other they out buzz word each other. Well the latest buzz words you likely to hear on this season’s software engineering runway are Hadoop, Splunk and Deep learning.
Yes indeed these big data buzzwords have been flying around Irdeto for some time. Now you normally think of big data as being used to analyze consumer behavior or to learn that the breading patterns of toads are great predictors of earthquakes. But what has big data got to do with security?
Could an innocent device like a STB, webcam or home thermostat be used by hackers to attack you? In the current world of the Internet of Things (IoT), the answer is Yes! Leading to the name Internet of Threats. But operators have the power to change this.
IoT promises connected convenience at consumer’s fingertips. From adjusting your home heating when you land back at the airport, to checking your home security remotely if the alarm goes off while you’re out. Consumers depend on their operator to be the trusted party and remove any privacy or security implications.
Many aspects of our lives are dependent on credentials such as logins, passwords or pin codes. As technology continues to be more IP driven and the world more connected, how safe are these credentials that we rely on so much?
You are the target
Credit card numbers have limited value – more information is needed to target you. As Bloomberg highlights, attacks on medical records are increasing because the data is richer. Identity theft requires accessing systems which have more information about you.
Cybercrime is big business. And the impact is far reaching. No organization is immune. Cable and Satellite operators with their large number of STBs could be vulnerable to attack. Can anything be done to minimize the risk?
Changing face of cybercrime
Hackers are no longer teenagers wanting to gain notoriety. Over the years, we’ve witnessed cybercrime change.
In February 1996, chess champion Gary Kasparov beat Deep Blue, the world’s strongest chess computer. Having suffered a defeat to the computer earlier, Kasparov changed his approach. His moves focused on where the short-term position was cloudy and there was no imminent tactical objective.
He did what the computer wasn’t expecting; hadn’t been designed to handle.
As you know from my earlier post, the inevitable march toward 4K has begun. And yes, with any new technology there will be challenges. But based on my discussions with studios and operators it’s clear that for well-prepared pay-TV operators, 4K could in fact bring opportunities.
Let me share some insights from recent conversations with studios and operators.