The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology Directorate is working to improve the resiliency of smartphones and other mobile technologies through directed research and development initiatives. Not as secure as office computers, mobile devices are becoming the preferred target for malicious actions by cyber adversaries. In many cases, smartphones, tablets and other electronic devices simply do not have the same protections available for more traditional computing technologies, experts say. The level of attacks also is moving “deeper down the mobile device stack,” from the application and mobile operating system layers to the hardware and infrastructure layers, according to the department.
A Department of Homeland Security Science pilot testing project helped identify and secure a variety of mobile apps used by first responders.
In reaction to the large-scale distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks that made headlines last year, a bipartisan group of senators has introduced legislation establishing minimum security requirements for government-purchased Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
Over the past week, I have thought a lot about innovation. In part because I’m preparing for my upcoming panel discussion on innovation at the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence Summit next week, and in part because I’m troubled by the seemingly pervasive use of the word “innovation” as a solution to many of our intelligence collection and analysis challenges.
The U.S. Defense Department is seeking creative app ideas that provide science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) learning tools. The Advanced Distributed Learning Initiative, a research and development office within the department, is heading up the challenge. From April 2 to June 4, 2012, interested participants can submit innovative ideas for better incorporating mobile devices into education, particularly regarding STEM efforts in grades K-12.