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Security

Successful Real World Test for 4D Quantum Encryption

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Successful Real World Test for 4D Quantum Encryption

Researchers at the University of Ottawa manage to send a message with high-dimensional quantum encryption between two building rooftops, marking a first successful test for the transmission of such signals.

Quantum encryption uses photons to encode information as quantum buts. The simplest form of quantum encryption is 2D, where each photon encodes one bit (either 1 or 0), but a photon can encode even more information, making "high-dimensional quantum encryption." The scheme used by the University of Ottawa is referred to as "4D," because each photon encodes 2 bits of information. This provides 4 possibilities, namely 01, 10, 11 and 00.

High-dimensional quantum encryption sends more information per photon. It is also more tolerant to signal-obscuring noise (such as turbulent air, failed electronics and detectors) before the transmission becomes unsecure. The real world test involved optical setups set on two rooftops 0.3km apart, and had the messages showing an error rate of 11%, below the 19% threshold required to maintain a secure connection.

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Gartner: Security Spending Grows to $86.4bn in 2017

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Gartner: Security Spending Grows to $86.4bn in 2017

According to Gartner global spending on security products and services is to reach $86.4bn in 2017-- a 7% increase over 2016, before growing to $93bn in 2018.

The analyst predicts fast growth in the security testing market (if from a small base), the result of continued data breaches and growing demands for application security testing as part of DevOps. Spending on emerging application security testing tools, particularly interactive application security testing (IAST), should contribute to further growth through 2021.

Security services remain the fastest growing segment, especially IT outsourcing, consulting and implementation services. However hardware support services should slow down due to the adoption of virtual appliances, public cloud and software as a service (SaaS) editions of security solutions reducing the overall need for attached hardware support.

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Passwords: What if Everything You Know Is Wrong?

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Passwords: What if Everything You Know Is Wrong?

by Shelly Palmer, CEO, The Palmer Group

Every time there’s a notable cybersecurity breach, someone (even me) writes a comprehensive primer on the proper way to create “secure” passwords. Lather, rinse, repeat. Until a few years ago, everyone (including me) based their password advice on a 2003 paper from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), with the catchy title “NIST Special Publication 800-63.” The paper recommended that passwords be cryptic, contain special characters, and be as close to nonsense as possible.

I was in a camp I called “How to Make a Cryptic Password You Can Easily Remember.” The short version was this: take a phrase you know, such as a favorite quote from a movie, and use the first letter of each word. For example, Sheriff Brody’s famous line from Jaws, “I think we’re gonna need a bigger boat,” becomes 1twgn@bb. The trick was using Leet (a technique where letters are replaced by numbers and symbols; see my post from July 2012, “Yahoo! Hacked: What You Need To Do Now”) to add the numbers and special characters. But as you can see from the example, a password made in this way is total nonsense to everyone but you – unless you forget your favorite quote.

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Kaspersky Withdraws Microsoft Antitrust Complaints

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Kaspersky Withdraws Microsoft Antitrust Complaints

Kaspersky Labs and Microsoft reach an agreement on how Windows 10 deals with 3rd party antivirus software-- leading to Kaspersky dropping its European antitrust complaint against Microsoft.

The Russian security company filed an antitrust complaint with the European Commission last June, following a similar complaint with the Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS). It claimed Microsoft uses its dominant position to push Windows Defender, a security solution Kaspersky deems inferior, by switching off rival antivirus software.

In addition, Kaspersky said Microsoft does not provide developers with enough time to full test Windows 10 upgrades to ensure compatibility with existing software.

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Symantec Offloads Web-Certification Business

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Symantec Offloads Web-Certification Business

Symantec sells its website certifications and related PKI solutions business to fellow security vendor DigiCert in a deal worth $950 million in cash and stock.

"Transitioning our website security and related PKI solutions to DigiCert allows us to sharpen our enterprise focus on delivering unparalleled protection for the cloud generation through Symantec's integrated cyberdefence platform," Symantec CEO Greg Clark says. "As our recently announced deals with Fireglass and Skycure demonstrate, we are accelerating the pace of innovation we bring to market through a combination of acquisitions as well as development from the ground up."

The deal has DigiCert take over Symantec SLL and TLS technology, as well as its Internet of Things (IoT) division. Symantec got most of the technology it is now selling back in 2010 through the $1.28bn acquisition of the VeriSign security business.

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