Podcast: What Apple's lawsuit against NSO Group means for digital rights

Credit to Author: Juliet Beauchamp, Ken Mingis, Lucas Mearian| Date: Thu, 02 Dec 2021 11:47:00 -0800

Last week, Apple filed a lawsuit against NSO Group, the technology firm behind the Pegasus spyware. In its lawsuit, Apple seeks to hold NSO Group accountable for alleged surveillance of select iPhone users, as well as ban the firm from using any Apple products. While digital rights activists commend Apple for standing up for privacy rights, they say they want to ensure that the precedent set by the case applies only to bad actors and not organizations in support of user privacy. Computerworld executive editor Ken Mingis and senior reporter Lucas Mearian join Juliet to discuss what the lawsuit means for Apple, those affected by the spyware and digital rights overall.

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How to use FileVault to protect business data on Macs

Credit to Author: Jonny Evans| Date: Thu, 02 Dec 2021 09:25:00 -0800

If you run a business on Macs (and many companies do) then you should become familiar with FileVault, the disk encryption system that’s built into macOS. When used properly, it makes it extremely hard for any malicious person to access your company’s confidential data in the event your Mac is lost or stolen.

What’s the problem FileVault tries to solve?

Most businesses possess various forms of sensitive data. This might include corporate  or supplier data, confidential order books, financial records, contact names and addresses, and more. That information has business value, but if compromised could also place you, your employees, or your customers at risk. In many industries, protection of such information is mandatory and legally required.

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Rise in employee monitoring prompts calls for new rules to protect workers

Credit to Author: Matthew Finnegan| Date: Tue, 30 Nov 2021 03:01:00 -0800

As remote work rose sharply during the COVID-19 pandemic, many businesses sought ways to keep track of workers no longer in the direct sight of managers. Now, with remote work strategies still in place — and office re-openings being pushed back —, the use of monitoring tools continues to grow.

In fact, the use of new and increasingly powerful technologies to manage and monitor workers has become so common that there are growing calls for regulators in the U.K. and U.S to update rules to protect employees.

“We have seen a significant increase of interest in employee monitoring technology through the pandemic,” said Helen Poitevin, VP analyst at Gartner focusing on human capital management technologies. “This continues as organizations plan for hybrid work environments, with employees working more flexibly from home and at the office.” 

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How to get more out of Edge (and bolster its security)

Credit to Author: Susan Bradley| Date: Mon, 29 Nov 2021 11:54:00 -0800

I use Edge, the built-in browser in Windows, though I’m very much in the minority. I even think it has the potential to be a better browser than Firefox or Chrome. Case in point: the recent “Super Duper Secure Mode” that has rolled out to the default Edge version after being in beta channels for several weeks. (Let’s call it the “SDSM” setting.)

As noted in a past Edge blog post, SDSM provides additional security features that allows you to disable just-in-time Javascript and then enable Controlflow-Enforcement Technology (CET) instead. Just-in-time Javascript has been used in many zero-day browser attacks in the past — thus, blocking it will help protect our systems and platforms going forward. In my testing so far, I have not seen any side effects running Edge in this mode ,even when doing online shopping or banking.

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Apple’s NSO lawsuit targets illegal spying by oppressive regimes

Credit to Author: Lucas Mearian| Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2021 03:00:00 -0800

Apple says its lawsuit against NSO Group this week is an attempt to hold the surveillance firm “accountable for … the surveillance and targeting of Apple users.” And it spared no ire in accusing the Israeli spyware company of its selling surveillance software to authoritarian governments — regardless of whether those governments use it to target dissidents, journalists, and activists.

NSO Group was already facing legal problems after messenger platform provider WhatsApp filed suit in 2019 for similar reasons. Earlier this month, the US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rejected the spyware company’s claim that it should be protected under sovereign immunity laws. In the high-profile case, WhatsApp alleged NSO’s spyware was used to hack 1,400 users of the messaging app.

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Apple pulls no punches in lawsuit against 'amoral' NSO Group

Credit to Author: Jonny Evans| Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2021 06:51:00 -0800

Apple has punched back against the “amoral” surveillance as a service industry of smartphone snoopers, filing suit against the NSO Group and its owner, Q Cyber Technologies, and taking steps to further secure digital lives.

Why this should matter to your business

Israeli firm NSO Group is a spyware firm that provides surveillance services to governments. It effectively privatizes state-sponsored snooping and enables even the most repressive government to outsource such tasks. It has been widely reported that software from NSO Group was used to target family members of murdered Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

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Ransomware is a threat, even for the smallest of businesses

Credit to Author: Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols| Date: Tue, 23 Nov 2021 04:00:00 -0800

If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a million times: “My business is too small for a cyber crook to bother with me.” Oh, my friend you are so, so wrong. No company is too big or too small for a ransomware dealer to come knocking at your virtual door.

A recent report from Webroot, The Hidden Costs of Ransomware, found the vast majority—85%—of managed service providers (MSPs) have reported attacks against small and midsized businesses (SMBs). Despite that appallingly high number, just 28% of SMBs consider ransomware a worry.

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A 20-second tweak for smarter, simpler Android security

Credit to Author: JR Raphael| Date: Wed, 17 Nov 2021 06:18:00 -0800

Security is important. That much is obvious, right?

And despite all the over-the-top, hilariously sensational headlines suggesting the contrary, the most realistic security threats on Android aren’t from the big, bad malware monster lurking in the shadows and waiting to steal your darkest secrets whilst drinking all of your cocoa.

Nope — the biggest risk to your security on Android is (drumroll, please…) you. The likelihood that you’ll at some point provide personal information to an ill-intending person or fail to properly secure an account in some way is without a doubt the most realistic threat to your virtual wellbeing. Malware? Meh. That’s rarely scary in anything more than a theoretical sense.

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