November, 2014

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Americans Say They’ve Lost Control of Their Privacy — Again

Source: Re/Code

Interesting new research out by the Pew Research Center suggesting that Americans are no longer in control of their privacy. All this is probably based upon certain NSA disclosures about how it is targeting Americans.

Quote from the article:

A significant majority of Americans say that they feel they have lost control over the personal information that is collected by companies, and worry about sharing personal information on social media sites and messaging services and in email and text messages.

The findings come from the Pew Research Center, which conducted a survey of 607 American adults. The survey demonstrates in pretty stark terms how concerned people have become in the last year amid disclosures about spying programs by the National Security Agency and repeated breaches of corporate computer systems that store payment and other personal data.

Among the findings is a significant lack of confidence for several everyday communications tools used to convey personal information: 81 percent say they feel “not very” or “not at all secure” in using a social media site like Facebook to share personal information with a trusted person or organization. But those numbers shrink correspondingly with the age of the technology in question. For instance, 68 percent of people felt the same way about chat and instant messaging while 57 percent worried about using email. Only about a third — 31 percent — worried they couldn’t trust a land-line telephone.


Read more at Re/Code

US Government Probes Medical Devices for Possible Cyber Flaws

Source: Re/Code

So, the US Government is now concerned about flaws with medical devices. I feel that if they were really concerned, the FDA would implement policies requiring that devices are built securely.

From my experience in the medical world, I can tell you, that medical devices are currently far, very far from being secure. In fact, I have specific security experience with the Hospira infusion pumps being insecure.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is investigating about two dozen cases of suspected cyber security flaws in medical devices and hospital equipment that officials fear could be exploited by hackers, a senior official at the agency told Reuters.

The products under review by the agency’s Industrial Control Systems Cyber Emergency Response Team, or ICS-CERT, include an infusion pump from Hospira and implantable heart devices from Medtronic and St. Jude Medical, according to other people familiar with the cases, who asked not to be identified because the probes are confidential.