Stories by Dirk A. D. Smith

  • Zero-day attacks: How to fight back

    With cybercrime hitting more than 500 million victims globally and costing $100 billion annually, it's clear that security breaches are a problem very far from being solved. One particularly dangerous threat that doesn't seem to be getting its fair share of attention is zero-day attacks.

  • Cybercrooks target SMBs with new types of attacks

    As money and corporate information have morphed from hard currency and blueprints to digital files, small and midsized businesses have become the new banks to rob. In fact, bank robberies across the U.S. have plummeted from 9,400 in 1991 to just 3,870 last year. As Doug Johnson of the American Bankers Association puts it: "As more and more transactions become electronic, more bank crimes become electronic."

  • How to solve Windows 8 crashes in less than a minute

    Windows 8 has been out for a while, featuring an interface that's as cool as it is annoying . . . until you get the hang of it. But, like any computer operating system, it can fall over. Luckily, there is an easy way to solve the cause of most crashes; just call up WinDbg, the Windows debugger; a free tool to diagnose the most common causes of Windows crashes -- misbehaved third party drivers.

  • NSA: Looking for a few good cybersecurity professionals

    At a time when cyberattacks on America's critical infrastructure have increased 17-fold (between 2009 and 2011), the need for highly trained cybersecurity professionals is acute. However, 83% of federal hiring managers in a recent survey said it was extremely difficult to find well-trained cybersecurity professionals and a projected shortfall of 20,000 to more than 40,000 people is expected in the years to come.

  • NSA security expert worries about mobility, cloud

    Approaching its 60th birthday, the National Security Agency (NSA) has a staff some 35,000 strong worldwide, and an impressive building complex in Fort Meade, Md., where the walls are lined with copper mesh to prevent electronic eavesdropping. True to its origins dating back to breaking enemy code during World War II, the agency has two primary missions: signals Intelligence (SIGINT) and information assurance (IA).