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Schneier on Security: Essays Tagged Forbes

Schneier on Security

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Essays Tagged “Forbes”

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The Internet of Things Will Be the World's Biggest Robot

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • February 2, 2016

Hebrew translation

The Internet of Things is the name given to the computerization of everything in our lives. Already you can buy Internet-enabled thermostats, light bulbs, refrigerators, and cars. Soon everything will be on the Internet: the things we own, the things we interact with in public, autonomous things that interact with each other.

These "things" will have two separate parts.

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The Era Of Automatic Facial Recognition And Surveillance Is Here

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • September 29, 2015

ID checks were a common response to the terrorist attacks of 9/11, but they'll soon be obsolete. You won't have to show your ID, because you'll be identified automatically. A security camera will capture your face, and it'll be matched with your name and a whole lot of other information besides. Welcome to the world of automatic facial recognition.

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Everyone Wants You To Have Security, But Not From Them

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • February 23, 2015

French translation

In December Google's Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt was interviewed at the CATO Institute Surveillance Conference. One of the things he said, after talking about some of the security measures his company has put in place post-Snowden, was: "If you have important information, the safest place to keep it is in Google. And I can assure you that the safest place to not keep it is anywhere else."

The surprised me, because Google collects all of your information to show you more targeted advertising. Surveillance is the business model of the Internet, and Google is one of the most successful companies at that. To claim that Google protects your privacy better than anyone else is to profoundly misunderstand why Google stores your data for free in the first place.

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Our Decreasing Tolerance To Risk

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • August 23, 2013

We're afraid of risk. It's a normal part of life, but we're increasingly unwilling to accept it at any level. So we turn to technology to protect us. The problem is that technological security measures aren't free.

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The Vulnerabilities Market and the Future of Security

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • May 30, 2012

Brazilian Portuguese translation

Recently, there have been several articles about the new market in zero-day exploits: new and unpatched computer vulnerabilities. It's not just software companies, who sometimes pay bounties to researchers who alert them of security vulnerabilities so they can fix them. And it's not only criminal organizations, who pay for vulnerabilities they can exploit. Now there are governments, and companies who sell to governments, who buy vulnerabilities with the intent of keeping them secret so they can exploit them.

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The Trouble with Airport Profiling

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • May 9, 2012

Why do otherwise rational people think it's a good idea to profile people at airports? Recently, neuroscientist and best-selling author Sam Harris related a story of an elderly couple being given the twice-over by the TSA, pointed out how these two were obviously not a threat, and recommended that the TSA focus on the actual threat: "Muslims, or anyone who looks like he or she could conceivably be Muslim."

This is a bad idea. It doesn’t make us any safer -- and it actually puts us all at risk.

The right way to look at security is in terms of cost-benefit trade-offs.

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The Plan to Quarantine Infected Computers

Keeping infected computers at bay is great in theory, but there are all sorts of complicating factors to consider.

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • November 11, 2010

Last month Scott Charney of Microsoft proposed that infected computers be quarantined from the Internet. Using a public health model for Internet security, the idea is that infected computers spreading worms and viruses are a risk to the greater community and thus need to be isolated. Internet service providers would administer the quarantine, and would also clean up and update users' computers so they could rejoin the greater Internet.

This isn't a new idea.

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The Story Behind The Stuxnet Virus

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • October 7, 2010

Computer security experts are often surprised at which stories get picked up by the mainstream media. Sometimes it makes no sense. Why this particular data breach, vulnerability, or worm and not others? Sometimes it's obvious.

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The Internet: Anonymous Forever

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • May 12, 2010

This essay previously appeared in Information Security as the first half of a point-counterpoint with Marcus Ranum. Marcus's half is here.

Universal identification is portrayed by some as the holy grail of Internet security. Anonymity is bad, the argument goes; and if we abolish it, we can ensure only the proper people have access to their own information. We'll know who is sending us spam and who is trying to hack into corporate networks.

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Google And Facebook's Privacy Illusion

These companies and others say privacy erosion is inevitable--but they're making it so.

  • Bruce Schneier
  • Forbes
  • April 6, 2010

In January Facebook Chief Executive, Mark Zuckerberg, declared the age of privacy to be over. A month earlier, Google Chief Eric Schmidt expressed a similar sentiment. Add Scott McNealy's and Larry Ellison's comments from a few years earlier, and you've got a whole lot of tech CEOs proclaiming the death of privacy--especially when it comes to young people.

It's just not true.

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Photo of Bruce Schneier by Per Ervland.

Schneier on Security is a personal website. Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of IBM Resilient.