RSA 2016 Recap

MosconeThe RSA 2016 Conference, held in San Francisco, was a flurry of activity, discussion, and exciting information, as over 40,000 attendees came together to discuss cybersecurity. From Apple’s attempt to take on the FBI to the Internet of Things, there were many topics and issues to dissect and discuss. Let’s take a look at a few of them here.

Apple vs. the FBI

It was the top-of-mind topic for everyone – the litigation battle between the FBI and Apple. While the government wants tech companies to have solutions in place that enable law enforcement unrestricted access, Apple is taking the stance that while in theory this would be ideal, there are too many potential risks involved, and these types of backdoors would be found by hackers. Both sides have valid arguments, and the result will be based on whether Congress believes Apple is acting “above the law,” or whether the government is violating Apple’s First and Fifth Amendment rights.

Software Defined Security

Software Defined Security, or SDS, is beginning to change the way companies view cybersecurity. By monitoring and controlling the behavior of hardware devices, companies will have the ability to fix and secure things more quickly and easily. SDS also provides “flexibility and scalability while mitigating the risks of compromised hardware,” according to UNICOM Engineering.

The Internet of Things

When it comes to securing the Internet of Things, there is no quick fix. Companies must incorporate their IoT security practices much earlier in the development process, if they plan to succeed. “Part of the problem is many IoT manufacturers are new to the computer and networking space,” states Eric Hibbard, CTO for security and privacy at Hitachi Data Systems Corp. “Combine that with the current dearth of IoT security standards, and you’ve got a recipe for half-baked security.” Security must be much more than an afterthought or a line-item for the Internet of Things.

Transparent Supply Chain Initiative

UNICOM Engineering and Intel presented at RSA 2016, discussing Intel’s new Transparent Supply Chain Initiative. With new government standards and policies being put in place, it can be challenging for integrators and ISVs who cannot handle the extra administrative burden that comes with it. Intel’s Transparent Supply Chain Initiative provides the sourcing documentation companies need by providing a digitally-signed statement of conformance. Overall, the program enables strict hardware sourcing and documentation, as well as traceability, accountability, assurance, and security.

Overall, the theme at RSA 2016 was making sense of complicated cybersecurity. As programs, software, and technology becomes more complex, so do the security solutions. However, sometimes, it’s important to get back to the basics and make sure that what you have is working as designed. There are myriad products out there doing anything and everything imaginable; now, it’s time to extrapolate the information from them in the form of analytics, using that information to continue to improve processes throughout the entire supply chain.

We take cybersecurity very seriously at Flash Global, working with our clients to ensure their products, services, and information is delivered not only securely, but efficiently as well. To learn more about how we can help protect your assets, connect with us today.


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