Archive | Cyber Security

Cyber Security: The Insider Threat

By Joe Campos
Associate Professor and Program Director of the Intelligence Studies Program at American Public University
As cyber issues develop, it is increasingly clear that cyber security is an ever evolving field.  Most recent issues stemming from specifics released by Edward Snowden on the United States’ surveillance program, reveal a variety of problems that need to be addressed, including that of the balance between civil liberties and national security and that of the insider threat.

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The White House, the World and Syria

Brett Daniel Shehadey
Special Contributor for In Homeland Security
As of now, President Barack Obama has relegated the use of military action against Syria to Congress in a surprise move. After stating his position supporting US military strikes against the Bashar al Assad regime’s most recent chemical weapons attack, it will ultimately be Congress’ decision.

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It’s Not Just China: Indian Hacker Group Spied On Targets In Pakistan, U.S. And Europe

By Andy Greenberg, ForbesSpecial to In Homeland Security
Chinese hackers may have become the bogeyman of cybersecurity nightmares, but it’s worth remembering that they don’t have a monopoly on digital espionage. In fact, researchers have now tied a series of attacks on hundreds of targets over the last three years to a more unusual suspect: India.

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Explosions disrupt Boston Marathon

BOSTON — Two explosions disrupted the Boston Marathon on Monday, causing at least two deaths and nearly two dozen injuries and scattering crowds near the finish line, authorities said.

The blasts occurred after the top racers had completed the course, but thousands of others were still running. CNN reported that authorities halted the race.

Video footage showed an explosion off to the side of the street as runners were nearing the finish line, with a couple of runners toppling over from the concussion. Smoke rise from a sidewalk and people ran away. Photos of the scene afterward showed a sidewalk slicked with blood.

Boston police said later that two people were killed and 23 injured in the blasts.

Police subsequently cleared the sidewalk on Huntington Street, saying there was a live bomb inside the Prudential Center. A third, smaller blast was heard.

A CNN producer who was at the race said the first large explosion was followed about 10 seconds later by another blast. He said he saw at least five or six people who appeared to be injured.

Emergency personnel rushed to the area, and the street was quickly sealed off.

The explosions occurred shortly before 3 p.m. Eastern time near the intersection of Boylston and Exeter streets. Local media reports said store fronts were blown out.

The Boston Fire Department, fearing secondary blasts, ordered all equipment off Boylston Street. A Boston firefighter tweeted that there were fears of “another possible device” at the city’s Mandarin Hotel, but this could not immediately be confirmed.

Nor was it immediately known what caused the blasts near the finish line.

According to the CNN producer, the blasts occurred on opposite sides of the street. He said the first “looked like it was off to the side of the street” and the second “looked like it happened on the sidewalk.” There were indications that one of the blasts may have come from a trash container, he said.

The witness said he saw at least four injured people being treated at the scene.

Many of the injured appeared to be spectators who were watching the race.

Pam Howze, 39, of Arlington, Va., had just finished the marathon at the time of the explosions.

“We didn’t see anything,” she said. “We were walking away and all we heard were two booms…. We just left the area.”

About half of the nearly 27,000 participants had reportedly finished the race when the blasts occurred. The racers came from at least 56 countries and territories.

“I saw two explosions,” reported Boston Herald journalist Chris Cassidy, who was running in the marathon. “The first one was beyond the finish line. I heard a loud bang and I saw smoke rising.” The blast ” looked like it was in a trash can or something,” he said. “There are at least a dozen that seem to be injured in some way.”

Police established a crime scene around the Prudential Center, which is near the finish line. The blast apparently occurred about 300 yards from the finish line.

In Washington, Sen. Patrick J. Toomey (R-Pa.) acknowledged the early reports of explosions before speaking on the Senate floor about pending gun legislation.

“It appears tragedy has struck at the Boston Marathon,” he said. “And bombs have gone off and there are injuries we know of, the severity of which we do not yet know. We hope and pray that there are no fatalities.”

President Obama was notified of the incident, and the administration is in contact with state and local authorities, a White House official said. Obama directed his administration to provide whatever assistance is necessary in the investigation and response, the official said.

Branigin reported from Washington.

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Judge in 9/11 trial OKs audio delays, censor at Guantanamo

The chief of the Guantanamo war court has approved the use of a time delay on public viewing of the Sept. 11 death-penalty trial as well as a censor in his court to make sure nobody divulges details of a now defunct CIA interrogation program, citing na…

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