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February 2011

Preparing for Predatory Peripherals

February 22, 2011

Your mouse may no longer be a friendly. That goes for your keyboard as well. Cyber security researchers have reportedly found a way to create peripherals that can be programmed to steal and transmit data when certain actions or keystrokes are performed.

Breakthrough Continues Comms When Jamming IEDs

February 24, 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

U.S. Army developers have installed in Afghanistan the first technology that permits radio communications to continue while soldiers use jammers to defeat improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

Service Supports South-of-the-Border Sea Survival

February 15, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

The U.S. Coast Guard is helping Mexico’s navy respond to emergencies at sea with a search and rescue system that maximizes data and resources. Computers in new maritime rescue coordination centers will feature the software that uses an animated grid model to project where floating persons or objects might be located.

Router Merges Land and Space

February 15, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Connections

It’s been talked about and in the planning stages for years. But for the first time, the “dial tone in the sky” has been advanced into use with enhanced capabilities via a software upgrade. Industry predicts that this step will lead to the ubiquitous use of communications via satellite.

Standardized C2 Training Plan Advances Forward

February 15, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Connections

Commanding generals at major U.S. Air Force commands are being briefed on a plan to provide standardized, cross-domain command and control training. Beginning this summer, the Air Force will likely begin standardized training courses on command and control of air, space and cyber resources.

New Products

February 15, 2011
By George I. Seffers, SIGNAL Connections

Mobile Device Regional Controls

Government and private organizations face an increasing risk to their smart phones and tablet devices as employees travel around the globe. Often the cultural requirements and threats to mobile devices may differ radically in different regions of the world, and an organization’s policies might differ from one country to the next. For example, content considered acceptable in some countries is deemed highly offensive in others, and organizations may want to restrict access in areas known for industrial espionage. With GeoLocation controls added to the Mobile Enterprise Compliance and Security Server (MECS), however, the enforcement policies automatically change when arriving in a particular region. Patent-pending mobile firewall and content-filtering mechanisms enforce controls based upon the physical location of the mobile device, offering flexibility over the access rights of iPhones, iPads, smart phones and tablet devices. In addition, by restricting access to certain capabilities based upon location, MECS can save costs. MECS' GeoLocation contains three different components—the real-time map, geolocation rule base option and reporting.

Trusted Network Environment v.10

Homefront Help

February 15, 2011
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Connections

Homefront Help is SIGNAL Connections’ effort to support U.S. service members, veterans and their families. The column highlights programs that offer resources and assistance to the military community ranging from care packages to benefits and everything in between. In that same spirit, Homefront Help presents opportunities for readers to donate time, offer resources and send words of thanks to those who sacrifice for freedom. Programs that provide services are listed in red. Opportunities for the public to reach out to service members are listed in blue. Each program description includes a link to the organization's website, when available. Homefront Help also has a Facebook page where visitors can gather and share information.

Employer Partnership of the Armed Forces

The Employer Partnership (EP) of the Armed Forces exists to link U.S. employers with service members, veterans and their families. Through the initiative, the military community can receive help leveraging its military training and experience for civilian career opportunities with national, regional and local employer partners. The organization has program support managers in 25 locations who serve as liaisons with human resources departments at companies and agencies on behalf of the military. The managers also post information about job fairs and other events as well as work with service members to refine their applications, resume writing and interview skills. Career counselors work to help members of the military community achieve career goals.

Mighty Mobile Devices Migrate Into Offices

February 2, 2011
By Maryann Lawlor, SIGNAL Online Exclusive

Apple sold more than 45 million iPhones and iPads in the first 10 months of 2010. As many of these devices enter workplaces—and organizations’ networks—leaders must determine not only how to secure them but also how to make them increase productivity.

Time for Government to Dump its 8-Tracks

February 2011
By Capt. Joseph A. Grace Jr., USN (Ret.), SIGNAL Magazine

In the early 1970s, the music industry was transformed by the arrival of a practical solution to mobile music—the 8-track player. The world embraced this technology, which infected car stereos, home entertainment systems, portable players and lifestyles. While transformational, this technology soon was replaced by the cassette, followed by CDs and audio DVDs until Apple came out with the iPod—another game-changing technology. The market has created many forms of iPod docking stations for cars, clock radios, entertainment systems, airplane seats, pillows and every possible application. Uses include photos, FM radio, podcasts, videoconferencing and Wi-Fi. This technology is significantly smaller, faster, more comprehensive, more capable and inherently more user-friendly than its 8-track progenitor. The same lessons from this progression can be applied to command, control, communications, computers and intelligence (C4I) and government information technology.

Change at the Roots Defines Swedish Military

February 2011
By Robert K. Ackerman, SIGNAL Magazine

Sweden is transforming its military across the board, beginning with its personnel makeup. The Northern European country, which has not been at war since 1814, is transitioning from a conscript military to a fully professional force. This change will reshape the military along different force lines with different emphases.
At a time when many other Western militaries are looking at deep cuts in their defense budgets, Sweden expects at worst a flat budget for the foreseeable future. Priorities for hardware expenditures may shift depending on ongoing studies, but not because of budget pressures.

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