Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Liz McMillan, Xenia von Wedel, Elizabeth White, Sanjay Zalavadia, Dana Gardner

Related Topics: Agile Computing

Agile Computing: Blog Post

Getting Back to the Basics of Actionable Threat Intelligence

Shoot, move and communicate more effectively

I remember it like it was yesterday, the first few hours of basic training. I stood there cooking in the South Carolina humidity with a very loud and short man, named Drill Sergeant Doll screaming a few inches from my ear, "You need to shoot, move and communicate!" At the time, I had absolutely no clue what he was talking about. However, over the course of a few weeks I would start to understand that these would be the basic skills I needed to successfully complete my training.

Later, I would learn that these three skills needed to be honed together and each soldier would eventually take what they learned and apply it under the pressure of a live fire exercise. This would test our ability to work as a team, each soldier required to direct precise suppressing fire, moving swiftly in alternating bounding movements towards an objective all while communicating with one another, taking care not to shoot a fellow team member. "Shoot, Move, and Communicate" became the cornerstone of our military training.

We see communication as a vital attribute underpinning much of what we do as a community on a daily basis. We communicate within our circle of influence, within and across our organizations, as well as with external parties or even autonomous machines. Communication is what builds interpersonal relationships and is what allows us to draw upon a larger community that then becomes a countermeasure, which can be organized and wielded against modern threats.

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work
Not unlike training for and conducting conventional combat, neutralizing asymmetric cyber threats requires some of the same basic teamwork skills. The njRAT infrastructure takedown operation conducted by Microsoft this week has been nothing short of controversial. If you shoot and move but fail to communicate, the result often means someone is going to get hurt. The unilateral takedown has served its purpose of impacting the attackers, but has also negatively effected all the stakeholders, such as Microsoft,  Vitalwerks (NO-IP), and its users alike.

While this is a highly complex example, the anatomy of the problem is disguised behind a two-front war, and as we look closer, the Microsoft takedown illuminates some of the problems we face today. Certainly there are the obvious technical challenges that the threats pose, but those are largely dwarfed in comparison to the interpersonal, social and cultural issues we have with one another, our individual motivations, as well as how and why we choose to communicate. The fallout between Microsoft and Vitalwerks (NO-IP) is a strategic inflection point within a decade old industry that seemingly fumbles every time one of us gets the ball.

There are many viewpoints, both for and against the actions Microsoft took, that have been posted on blogs, discussed on mailing lists and questioned in the news. Like trying to solve any challenge faced on a global scale, pulling one lever will undoubtedly move three or four somewhere else, triggering unforeseen consequences, in many cases becoming the new focal point and problem. As an industry, we need to become more situationally aware and selfless. We cannot continue to go at it alone, nor should we try. Unity is our strength. The sooner we all recognize this, the more effective we will be in dealing with common adversaries.

Solution Focused vs. Problem Focused
We specifically engineered ThreatConnect to be the enterprise solution that allows the security community to cross the chasm that exists between the technical and non-technical security challenges we face today. ThreatConnect was created with the intention of giving anyone the ability to easily develop and control their own threat intelligence by aggregating data from any source they deemed of value, allowing them to analyze and dynamically enrich contextualized indicators over time with the ability to communicate their findings in a controlled and trusted manner.

This flexibility gives analysts and network defense personnel the precision that is needed to accurately focus in on specific indicator types of interest and effectively manage their knowledge and pool resources. When it comes time to operationalize the information and coordinate their neutralization, there are capabilities to communicate around the data, intent to convey and actions to coordinate in order to minimize the risk of uninformed stakeholders and unintended consequences.

No Excuses
In today's highly connected world, there should be no excuse for breakdowns in communication when conducting such important and delicate operations as infrastructure takedowns. As of late April 2014, ThreatConnect has been sponsoring a free private ThreatConnect Community, proactively reaching out to service providers who are victims of abuse and wish to actively contribute resources to support coordinated takedown operations.

This emerging community is populated with vetted individuals and organizations within enterprise security teams, dynamic DNS providers and domain registrars. The goal is to deliver a platform and environment in which all stakeholders can easily come together and adopt a selfless attitude, and then deliver results for the common interest of our users and customers.

On a daily basis, the ThreatConnect Intelligence Research Team (TCIRT) leverages ThreatConnect to effectively share information and collaborate with large organizations, such as Microsoft and small to medium sized organizations, like Vitalwerks (NO-IP), so they are able to act on information in a coordinated manner. We do this because it is the right thing to do and the best way to do it.

If you or your organization is interested in participating in this community or others in ThreatConnect, register for a free basic account and get started, so you can do your part and enter into a community which will allow you to shoot, move, and communicate more effectively.

More Stories By Rich Barger

Rich is the Chief Intelligence Officer for Cyber Squared and the ThreatConnect Intelligence Research Team (TCIRT) Director.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
Connected devices and the industrial internet are growing exponentially every year with Cisco expecting 50 billion devices to be in operation by 2020. In this period of growth, location-based insights are becoming invaluable to many businesses as they adopt new connected technologies. Knowing when and where these devices connect from is critical for a number of scenarios in supply chain management, disaster management, emergency response, M2M, location marketing and more. In his session at @Th...
Basho Technologies has announced the latest release of Basho Riak TS, version 1.3. Riak TS is an enterprise-grade NoSQL database optimized for Internet of Things (IoT). The open source version enables developers to download the software for free and use it in production as well as make contributions to the code and develop applications around Riak TS. Enhancements to Riak TS make it quick, easy and cost-effective to spin up an instance to test new ideas and build IoT applications. In addition to...
Apixio Inc. has raised $19.3 million in Series D venture capital funding led by SSM Partners with participation from First Analysis, Bain Capital Ventures and Apixio’s largest angel investor. Apixio will dedicate the proceeds toward advancing and scaling products powered by its cognitive computing platform, further enabling insights for optimal patient care. The Series D funding comes as Apixio experiences strong momentum and increasing demand for its HCC Profiler solution, which mines unstruc...
When people aren’t talking about VMs and containers, they’re talking about serverless architecture. Serverless is about no maintenance. It means you are not worried about low-level infrastructural and operational details. An event-driven serverless platform is a great use case for IoT. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Animesh Singh, an STSM and Lead for IBM Cloud Platform and Infrastructure, will detail how to build a distributed serverless, polyglot, microservices framework using open source tec...
IoT offers a value of almost $4 trillion to the manufacturing industry through platforms that can improve margins, optimize operations & drive high performance work teams. By using IoT technologies as a foundation, manufacturing customers are integrating worker safety with manufacturing systems, driving deep collaboration and utilizing analytics to exponentially increased per-unit margins. However, as Benoit Lheureux, the VP for Research at Gartner points out, “IoT project implementers often ...
It is one thing to build single industrial IoT applications, but what will it take to build the Smart Cities and truly society changing applications of the future? The technology won’t be the problem, it will be the number of parties that need to work together and be aligned in their motivation to succeed. In his Day 2 Keynote at @ThingsExpo, Henrik Kenani Dahlgren, Portfolio Marketing Manager at Ericsson, discussed how to plan to cooperate, partner, and form lasting all-star teams to change t...
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
Presidio has received the 2015 EMC Partner Services Quality Award from EMC Corporation for achieving outstanding service excellence and customer satisfaction as measured by the EMC Partner Services Quality (PSQ) program. Presidio was also honored as the 2015 EMC Americas Marketing Excellence Partner of the Year and 2015 Mid-Market East Partner of the Year. The EMC PSQ program is a project-specific survey program designed for partners with Service Partner designations to solicit customer feedbac...
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with the 19th International Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world and ThingsExpo Silicon Valley Call for Papers is now open.
There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Big Data at Cloud Expo - to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - has announced its Call for Papers is open. Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is...