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There’s a fantastic invention that could render financial technology (fintech) fraudsters redundant. It’s called “paper money”. This physical manifestation of credit means criminals will have to break into the bank to steal your money, which is a lot harder these days. Better still, if the bank lets that happen, it will be forced to accept liability, not the individual customers.
Paper money is part of the UseYourLoaf suite called The Applications of Common Sense. Under this “back to basics” system, users are urged to ignore everything that’s too good to be true. Bleaching out the get-rich-quick pitches and kitten pictures from unknown sources could kill 99% of viruses stone dead, according to Common Sense.
However, it’s not expected that any of these things will catch on with the public.
So, Infosecurity Europe it is then! From today (4 June) to Thursday (6 June) the London Olympia exhibition centre will showcase all the solutions to the security problems that the IT industry created in the first place. There’s fortune to be made out of our collective madness.
Raise awareness of hidden threats
There are proven levels of gullibility in the world’s computer users, as demonstrated by the fact that a billion people downloaded a picture of an egg.
This proves how easy it is to break into millions of homes, businesses and corporations, warns the chief technology officer (CTO) of Deep Secure, Simon Wiseman. Deep Secure wants partners’ help in its fight against the curse of steganography, the technique of hiding rogue code inside graphics files.
The channel has a job to do in raising awareness of the dangers of casual intercourse with strangers’ pictures. Picture files are massive because they have endless fields for storing instructions. So many, in fact, that you could hide the complete works of Shakespeare in a single jpeg.
The instructions hidden inside that picture of Kim Kardashian’s bottom are likely to have one of three menacing intentions. They are either going to attack the system that has accepted them, extract sensitive information, or take control of the system altogether.
Deep Secure’s solution to the problem is to bleach out all the commands that are not native to this type of file. Sounds straightforward enough. But the challenge is to capture the imagination of the security buyers. That’s something that systems integrators and security service suppliers can do on its behalf.
Rise to the identity challenge
Given that the public has been persuaded to put blind faith in online trading, with predictably disastrous consequences, identity protectors are going to sell well now. Especially if a complete suite of products is available to cover all insecure eventualities.
Ignition Technology claims it has created such an omni-channel service, with its new Identity Platform. It completed its squad with the signing of a distribution agreement with BeyondTrust, for its Privileged Access Management (PAM) system.
The great thing about this product is that it allows other people, other than the IT department, to get involved in security, says Sean Remnant, Ignition Technology’s chief strategy officer. Restricting people’s access is something that makes the IT manager unpopular, whereas other department heads could relish the opportunity to gain a bit of power.
Finance directors have a reputation for being particularly pompous and controlling. That’s why they’ve been dubbed the FD-duddies.
The good news is this gives the channel someone new – and possibly more receptive – to sell to. This is becoming an increasingly popular product, according to Remnant. “Identity is rapidly maturing as a key business issue for mid-market organisations,” says Remnant.
There’s a wider customer engagement in the identity challenge, he says. Analysts such as Gartner have forecast that today’s £11bn market will triple by 2021.
Straight from the vendor’s portal
You can get the perspective on another channel shake-up from Becrypt, which is dealing direct with its reseller partners now, rather than using distributors.
Becrypt channel specialist Jo Holliday says its mature offerings – disk encryption and data protection – are now easy enough to sell direct to resellers. This follows the success it has with a single-tier approach with its more modern product, the lightweight operating system Paradox.
Since this is more complex, it was initially thought to be best supported by training people up internally. This turned out to be a more fruitful strategy.
The success of this approach can be partly attributed to the skilful use of a partner portal, such as the Mind Matrix system used by Becrypt, according to Holliday. It’s about getting the right information to the right people at the right time.
The key to good value-added distribution is to be good at communication and sharing information – which Becrypt seems capable of doing for itself now.
Common sense really! I wonder if this will catch on.
And I wonder if more tiers will be shed in the industry.