Technology Trends in the APS

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For now please find below an article from Inside Canberra. www.insidecanberra.com

Hackers Feast – Part Two
All information about us is digital, stored somewhere on digital ‘memory materials’ and always evolving as we and our circumstances change. The essence of our existence is the patterns that this data forms or the profiles it matches. For easy conceptual reference let’s call them Data Life Patterns or DLP’s for short.
Today, identity theft, locating abuse, message bank hacking, denial of service attacks, stuxnet-like worm viruses that attack data are diseases of our digital existence. The data may change but this is part of a chronology that has logic or evidence behind it so that non-transparent changes can raise alerts and immediate remedial responses to maintain data integrity can be taken.
DLP structures have to become more part of policy thinking in government, notwithstanding failed initiatives such as the Australia and Access Card. DLP’s can be seen as forensic fingerprints that, if altered unnaturally or invalidly, get detected through regular ‘health’ checks. As the DLP’s are basically meta data they do not directly infringe the concepts of security and privacy as currently legally defined. For example Blackberry, a smartphone and platform-device popular with governments due to its security, has developed a private and work mode that does not compromise data between modes or DLP’s. Government policy needs to include concepts like DLP’s and set out how the machinery of the state will safeguard it’s now digitised citizenry.
The issue of jurisdiction for stored data is a major issue across the world and, in many cases, backup archival solutions as its domicile can’t be verified which presents a big potential problem with mandated user archives for service providers. I’d like to see these so-called cloud systems put to the test. I have my doubts that they are sufficiently secure to be justified.
Consumer groups like ACCAN are way ahead and have even produced the ‘Phone Rights’ apps for iOS and Android smart phones. The apps were launched by Andrew Leigh, who now that he is a Parliamentary Secretary to the PM, may even promote a serious DLP discussion. Hackers could be invited to participate too, preferably without disfiguring the digital bulletin board or the platforms used.
Roger Hausmann