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NSA Says New Encryption Standards Needed to Resist Quantum Computing

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
NEWS ANALYSIS: Quantum computing's potential for cracking encryption worries the National Security Agency, so it is developing standards and strategies to support encryption in a post-quantum world.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Samsung Galaxy S8 iris scanner can be fooled with a printed photo

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
After demonstrating how easily Apple’s Touch ID can be fooled with a user fingerprint photographed from a glass surface, Chaos Computer Club (CCC) hacker “Starbug” has proven that the iris recognition system in Samsung’s Galaxy S8 smartphone can be fooled by using a printed photo of the user’s eye(s).
Kategorie: Aktuality

How quantum computing increases cybersecurity risks

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
5 ways your information and property will be compromised when quantum computers arrive.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Top 5: Things to know about quantum computers

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Five basic informations. And other links.
Kategorie: Aktuality

2017 Global Encryption Trends Study

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
This twelfth installment of the Global Encryption Trends Study, conducted by the Ponemon Institute and sponsored by Thales e-Security, reveals both deployment plans and pains associated with increasingly aggressive cloud and data protection strategies.


Strategy and Adoption of Encryption
Trends in Encryption Adoption
Threats, Main Drivers and Priorities
Deployment Choices
Encryption Features Considered Most Important
Attitudes About Key Management
Importance of Hardware Security Modules (HSMs)
Budget Allocations
Cloud Encryption
Kategorie: Aktuality

IoT Needs Embedded Cryptography

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Security is a top concern for the Internet of Things, as essential as low power consumption, affordability, and wireless connectivity.

Because IoT devices are optimized for low power consumption and affordability, many have less than optimal computing resources. The good news is there are several options for using cryptography to make it more difficult for hackers to highjack your living room webcam, video doorbell or car.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Team of Polish and Czech scientists creates prototype quantum money

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
One of the most famous more recent quotes about the nature of money is by the fictional Baltimore drug dealer D´Angelo Barksdale in the US series The Wire: “Money be green…” he says, “money feel like money!”, reacting to a scam where a buyer has passed poorly counterfeited bills. Money feels like money… except when it doesn´t. Money of the future will no longer be bills and will not be the digital money of today, either. Scientists at Palacký University in Olomouc have demonstrated that in all likelihood it will be quantum, ultra-secure and impossible to clone.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Let´s Encrypt has issued 15,000 SSL certificates to PayPal phishing sites

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Security experts call on firm to refuse certificates for domains containing popular brand names.

MORE THAN 15,000 SSL certificates have been issued to PayPal phishing sites, according to research from The SSL Store.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Bypassing encryption: “Lawful hacking” is the next frontier of law enforcement technology

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Intelligence agencies are going to find new ways to get access to information stored online.
The discussion about how law enforcement or government intelligence agencies might rapidly decode information someone else wants to keep secret is – or should be – shifting. One commonly proposed approach, introducing what is called a “backdoor” to the encryption algorithm itself, is now widely recognized as too risky to be worth pursuing any further.
The scholarly and research community, the technology industry and Congress appear to be in agreement that weakening the encryption that in part enables information security – even if done in the name of public safety or national security – is a bad idea. Backdoors could be catastrophic, jeopardizing the security of billions of devices and critical communications.
What comes next? Surely police and spy agencies will still want, or even need, information stored by criminals in encrypted forms. Without a backdoor, how might they get access to data that may help them solve – or even prevent – a crime?

Kategorie: Aktuality

Security Innovation Makes NTRUEncrypt Patent-Free

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Security Innovation’s embedded security division, OnBoard Security, a leader in automotive, embedded, and IoT cyber security, announced it is placing all of its NTRUEncrypt patents in the public domain, so that they may be freely used without license or any other restriction. In addition, the company announced that it is encouraging offers to purchase the patent portfolio for its popular quantum-resistant signing algorithm, pqNTRUsign.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Europe to push new laws to access encrypted apps data

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
The European Commission will in June push for access to data stored in the cloud by encrypted apps, according to EU Justice Commissioner Věra Jourová.

Speaking publicly, and claiming that she has been pushed by politicians across Europe, Jourová said that she will outline "three or four options" that range from voluntary agreements by business to strict legislation.

The EC´s goal is to provide the police with a "swift and reliable" way to discover what users of encrypted apps have been communicating with others.
Kategorie: Aktuality

WSU mathematician breaks down how to defend against quantum computing attacks

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
The encryption codes that safeguard internet data today won´t be secure forever.
Future quantum computers may have the processing power and algorithms to crack them.
Nathan Hamlin, instructor and director of the WSU Math Learning Center, is helping to prepare for this eventuality.
He is the author of a new paper in the Open Journal of Discrete Mathematics that explains how a code he wrote for a doctoral thesis, the Generalized Knapsack Code, could thwart hackers armed with next generation quantum computers.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Time´s up for SHA-1 hash algo, but one in five websites still use it

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
Google, Microsoft and Mozilla say they won´t trust anyone who hasn´t migrated.
One in five websites (21 per cent) are still using certificates signed with the vulnerable SHA-1 hash algorithm, according to a new survey.
Reliance on the obsolete hashing technology leaves companies at greater risk of security breaches and compliance problems, certificate management firm Venafi warns.
Venafi´s latest study shows there has been improvement since November 2016, when a third (35 per cent) of websites were still using SHA-1.
Kategorie: Aktuality

Post-Quantum Crypto: Don´t Do Anything

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
No Need to Panic, Cryptographers Say; Just Wait for NIST Guidance

There´s good news for anyone worried about the rise of quantum computers and the risk that they could be used to crack modern, public-key crypto systems, thus imperiling the security of much of today´s data, both in transit and at rest. Leading cryptographers advise: Don´t panic, and above all, don´t do anything about it right now.
Kategorie: Aktuality

RSA Conference 2017: From Cryptography to Mysteries of the Universe

Security News - 4 min 44 sek zpět
This year´s RSA Conference, which was held Feb. 13-17 in San Francisco, saw more than 43,000 attendees show up to listen to speakers and to learn from vendors about the latest security trends, products and services. Among the annual traditions at the RSA Conference is the Cryptographers Panel, which includes Ron Rivest (the "R" in RSA) and Adi Shamir (the "S" in RSA). The cryptographers are not particularly enthusiastic about the modern state of security, with Shamir claiming that the internet as we know it is broken. Also at the conference, former U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) chief Gen. Keith Alexander talked about how the cloud can help enable a common defense for organizations of all sizes. Meanwhile at a VIP event at the RSA Conference, Michael Dell, CEO of Dell Technologies, spoke about new innovations from RSA as well his company´s broader approach to securing IT assets and information. And at a number of sessions at the conference, Google detailed its approaches to both Android and Gmail security. In this slide show, eWEEK takes a look at some of the highlights of the 2017 RSA Conference.
Kategorie: Aktuality

How to Build a Mind? This Theory May Guide Us Toward an Answer

Singularity HUB - 4 min 50 sek zpět

From time to time, the Singularity Hub editorial team unearths a gem from the archives and wants to share it all over again. It's usually a piece that was popular back then and we think is still relevant now. This is one of those articles. It was originally published June 19, 2016. We hope you enjoy it!

How do intelligent minds learn?

Consider a toddler navigating her day, bombarded by a kaleidoscope of experiences. How does her mind discover what’s normal happenstance and begin building a model of the world? How does she recognize unusual events and incorporate them into her worldview? How does she understand new concepts, often from just a single example?

These are the same questions machine learning scientists ask as they inch closer to AI that matches — or even beats — human performance. Much of AI’s recent victories — IBM Watson against Ken Jennings, Google’s AlphaGo versus Lee Sedol — are rooted in network architectures inspired by multi-layered processing in the human brain.

In a review paper, published in Trends in Cognitive Sciences, scientists from Google DeepMind and Stanford University penned a long-overdue update on a prominent theory of how humans and other intelligent animals learn.

In broad strokes, the Complementary Learning Systems (CLS) theory states that the brain relies on two systems that allow it to rapidly soak in new information, while maintaining a structured model of the world that’s resilient to noise.

“The core principles of CLS have broad relevance … in understanding the organization of memory in biological systems,” wrote the authors in the paper.

What’s more, the theory’s core principles — already implemented in recent themes in machine learning — will no doubt guide us towards designing agents with artificial intelligence, they wrote.

Dynamic Duo

In 1995, a team of prominent psychologists sought to explain a memory phenomenon: patients with damage to their hippocampus could no longer form new memories but had full access to remote memories and concepts from their past.

Given the discrepancy, the team reasoned that new learning and old knowledge likely relied on two separate learning systems. Empirical evidence soon pointed to the hippocampus as the site of new learning, and the cortex — the outermost layer of the brain — as the seat of remote memories.

In a landmark paper, they formalized their ideas into the CLS theory.

According to CLS, the cortex is the memory warehouse of the brain. Rather than storing single experiences or fragmented knowledge, it serves as a well-organized scaffold that gradually accumulates general concepts about the world.

This idea, wrote the authors, was inspired by evidence from early AI research.

Experiments with multi-layer neural nets, the precursors to today’s powerful deep neural networks, showed that, with training, the artificial learning systems gradually learned to extract structure from the training data by adjusting connection weights — the computer equivalent to neural connections in the brain.

Put simply, the layered structure of the networks allows them to gradually distill individual experiences (or examples) into high-level concepts.

Similar to deep neural nets, the cortex is made up of multiple layers of neurons interconnected with each other, with several input and output layers. It readily receives data from other brain regions through input layers and distills them into databases (“prior knowledge”) to draw upon when needed.

“According to the theory, such networks underlie acquired cognitive abilities of all types in domains as diverse as perception, language, semantic knowledge representation and skilled action,” wrote the authors.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the cortex is often touted as the basis of human intelligence.

Yet this system isn’t without fault. For one, it’s painfully slow. Since a single experience is considered a single “sample” in statistics, the cortex needs to aggregate over years of experience in order to build an accurate model of the world.

Another issue arises after the network matures. Information stored in the cortex is relatively faithful and stable. It’s a blessing and a curse. Consider when you need to dramatically change your perception of something after a single traumatic incident. It pays to be able to update your cortical database without having to go through multiple similar events.

But even the update process itself could radically disrupt the existing network. Jamming new knowledge into a multi-layer network, without regard for existing connections, results in intolerable changes to the network. The consequences are so dire that scientists call the phenomenon is “catastrophic interference.”

Thankfully, we have a second learning system that complements the cortex.

Unlike the slow-learning cortex, the hippocampus concerns itself with breaking news. Not only does it encode a specific event (for example, drinking your morning coffee), it also jots down the context in which the event occurred (you were in your bed checking email while drinking coffee). This lets you easily distinguish between similar events that happened at different times.

The reason that the hippocampus can encode and delineate detailed memories — even when they’re remarkably similar — is due to its peculiar connection pattern. When information flows into the structure, it activates a different neural activity pattern for each experience in the downstream pathway. Different network pattern; different memory.

In a way, the hippocampus learning system is the antithesis of its cortical counterpart: it’s fast, very specific and tailored to each individual experience. Yet the two are inextricably linked: new experiences, temporarily stored in the hippocampus, are gradually integrated into the cortical knowledge scaffold so that new learning becomes part of the databank.

But how do connections from one neural network “jump” to another?

System to System

The original CLS theory didn’t yet have an answer. In the new paper, the authors synthesized findings from recent experiments and pointed out one way system transfer could work.

Scientists don’t yet have all the answers, but the process seems to happen during rest, including sleep. By recording brain activity of sleeping rats that had been trained on a certain task the day before, scientists repeatedly found that their hippocampi produced a type of electrical activity called sharp-wave ripples (SWR) that propagate to the cortex.

When examined closely, the ripples were actually “replays” of the same neural pattern that the animal had generated during learning, but sped up to a factor of about 20. Picture fast-forwarding through a recording — that’s essentially what the hippocampus does during downtime. This speeding up process compresses peaks of neural activity into tighter time windows, which in turn boosts plasticity between the hippocampus and the cortex.

In this way, changes in the hippocampal network can correspondingly tweak neural connections in the cortex.

Unlike catastrophic interference, SWR represent a much gentler way to integrate new information into the cortical database.

Replay also has some other perks. You may remember that the cortex requires a lot of training data to build its concepts. Since a single event is often replayed many times during a sleep episode, SWRs offer a deluge of training data to the cortex.

SWR also offers a way for the brain to “hack reality” in a way that benefits the person. The hippocampus doesn’t faithfully replay all recent activation patterns. Instead, it picks rewarding events and selectively replays them to the cortex.

This means that rare but meaningful events might be given privileged status, allowing them to preferentially reshape cortical learning.

“These ideas…view memory systems as being optimized to the goals of an organism rather than simply mirroring the structure of the environment,” explained the authors in the paper.

This reweighting process is particularly important in enriching the memories of biological agents, something important to consider for artificial intelligence, they wrote.

Biological to Artificial

The two-system set-up is nature’s solution to efficient learning.

“By initially storing information about the new experience in the hippocampus, we make it available for immediate use and we also keep it around so that it can be replayed back to the cortex, interleaving it with ongoing experience and stored information from other relevant experiences,” says Stanford psychologist and article author Dr. James McClelland in a press interview.

According to DeepMind neuroscientists Dharshan Kumaran and Demis Hassabis, both authors of the paper, CLS has been instrumental in recent breakthroughs in machine learning.

Convolutional neural networks (CNN), for example, are a type of deep network modeled after the slow-learning neocortical system. Similar to its biological muse, CNNs also gradually learn through repeated, interleaved exposure to a large amount of training data. The system has been particularly successful in achieving state-of-the-art performance in challenging object-recognition tasks, including ImageNet.

Other aspects of CLS theory, such as hippocampal replay, has also been successfully implemented in systems such as DeepMind’s Deep Q-Network. Last year, the company reported that the system was capable of learning and playing dozens of Atari 2600 games at a level comparable to professional human gamers.

“As in the theory, these neural networks exploit a memory buffer akin to the hippocampus that stores recent episodes of gameplay and replays them in interleaved fashion. This greatly amplifies the use of actual gameplay experience and avoids the tendency for a particular local run of experience to dominate learning in the system,” explains Kumaran.

Hassabis agrees.

We believe that the updated CLS theory will likely continue to provide a framework for future research, for both neuroscience and the quest for artificial general intelligence, he says.

Image Credit: Shutterstock 

Kategorie: Transhumanismus

Top Stories, May 22-28: Analytics, Data Science, Machine Learning Software Poll Results

Home AI - 1 min 1 sek zpět

Top Stories, May 22-28: Analytics, Data Science, Machine Learning Software Poll Results

New Leader, Trends, and Surprises in Analytics, Data Science, Machine Learning Software Poll; Machine Learning Crash Course: Part 1; Text Mining …

Link to Full Article

Kategorie: Transhumanismus

ARM announces a slew of processors to promote AI and machine learning

Home AI - 1 min 49 sek zpět

ARM announces a slew of processors to promote AI and machine learning

These processors are the exact platform on which companies are now developing the abilities to boost mobile AI, mobile VR, and machinelearning …

Link to Full Article

Kategorie: Transhumanismus

Judy Android Malware Infects Over 36.5 Million Google Play Store Users

The Hacker News - 49 min 1 sek zpět
Security researchers have claimed to have discovered possibly the largest malware campaign on Google Play Store that has already infected around 36.5 million Android devices with malicious ad-click software. The security firm Checkpoint on Thursday published a blog post revealing more than 41 Android applications from a Korean company on Google Play Store that make money for its creators by
Kategorie: Hacking & Security

Timing May Be Everything When Using Electrical Brain Stimulation to Boost Your Memory

Futurism - Enhanced Humans - 1 hodina 4 min zpět

The first time I heard that shooting electrical currents across your brain can boost learning, I thought it was a joke.

But evidence is mounting. According to a handful of studies, transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), the poster child of brain stimulation, is a bona fide cognitive booster: By directly tinkering with the brain’s electrical field, some research has found that tDCS enhances creativity, bolsters spatial and math learning and even language aquisition — sometimes weeks after the initial zap.

For those eager to give their own brains a boost, this is good news. Various communities have sprung up to share tips and tricks on how to test the technique on themselves, often using self-rigged stimulators powered by 9-volt batteries.

Scientists and brain enthusiasts aren’t the only people interested. The military has also been eager to support projects involving brain stimulation with the hope that the technology could one day be used to help soldiers suffering from combat-induced memory loss.

But here’s the catch: the end results are inconsistent at best. While some people swear by the positive effects anecdotally, others report nothing but a nasty scalp burn from the electrodes.

In a meta-analysis covering over 20 studies, a team from Australia found no significant effects of tDCS on memory. Similar disparities pop up for other brain stimulation techniques. It’s not that brain stimulation isn’t doing anything — it just doesn’t seem to be doing something consistently across a diverse population. So what gives?

It looks like timing is everything.

When the Zap Comes Is Crucial

We all have good days when your brain feels sharp and bad days when the “brain fog” never lifts. This led scientists to wonder: because electrical stimulation directly regulates the activity of the brain’s neural networks, what if it gives them a boost when they’re faltering, but conversely disrupts their activity when already performing at peak?

In a new study published in “Current Biology,” researchers tested the idea using the most direct type of brain stimulation — electrodes implanted into the brain. Compared to tDCS, which delivers currents through electrodes on the scalp, implanted ones allow much higher precision in controlling which brain region to target and when.

Blue dots indicate overall electrode placement in the new study from the University of Pennsylvania; the yellow dot (top-right corner) is the electrode used to stimulate the subject’s brain to increase memory performance. Image Credit: Joel Stein and Youssef Ezzyat, CC BY-ND

The team collaborated with a precious resource: epilepsy patients who already have electrodes implanted into their hippocampi and surrounding areas. These brain regions are crucial for memories about sequences, spaces and life events. The electrodes serve a double purpose: they both record brain activity and deliver electrical pulses.

The researchers monitored the overall brain activity of 102 epilepsy patients as they memorized 25 lists of a dozen unrelated words and tried to recall them later on.

For each word, the researchers used the corresponding brain activity pattern to train a type of software called a classifier. In this way, for each patient the classifier eventually learned what types of brain activity preceded successfully remembering a word, and what predicted failed recall. Using this method, the scientist objectively classified a “foggy” brain state as the pattern of brain activity that preceded an inability to remember the word, while the pattern of activity common before successfully recalling is characteristic of being on the ball.

Next, in the quarter of patients for whom the classifier performed above chance, the researchers zapped their brains as they memorized and recalled a new list of words. As a control, they also measured memory performance without any stimulation, and the patients were asked whether they could tell when the electrodes were on (they couldn’t).

Here’s what they found: when the zap came before a low, foggy brain state, the patients scored roughly 12 to 13 percent higher than usual on the recall task. But if they were already in a high-performance state, quite the opposite occurred. Then the electrical pulse impaired performance by 15 to 20 percent and disrupted the brain’s encoding activity — that is, actually making memories.

Moving Beyond Random Stimulation

This study is notably different from those before. Rather than indiscriminately zapping the brain, the researchers showed that the brain state at the time of memory encoding determines whether brain stimulation helps or hinders. It’s an invaluable insight for future studies that try to tease apart the effects of brain stimulation on memory.

The next big challenge is to incorporate these findings into brain stimulation trials, preferably using noninvasive technologies. The finding that brain activity can predict recall is promising and builds upon previous research linking brain states to successful learning. These studies may be leveraged to help design “smart” brain stimulators.

For example: picture a closed-loop system, where a cap embedded with electrodes measures brain activity using EEG or other methods. Then the data go to a control box to determine the brain state. When the controller detects a low functioning state, it signals the tDCS or other stimulator to give a well-timed zap, thus boosting learning without explicit input from the user.

Of course, many questions remain before such a stimulator becomes reality. What are the optimal number and strength of electrical pulses that best bolster learning? Where should we place the electrodes for best effect? And what about unintended consequences? A previous study found that boosting learning may actually impair a person’s ability to automate that skill — quickly and effortlessly perform it — later on. What other hidden costs of brain stimulation are we missing?

I’m not sure if I’ll ever be comfortable with the idea of zapping my brain. But this new study and the many others sure to follow give me more confidence: if I do take the leap into electrical memory enhancement, it’ll be based on data, not on anecdotes.

The post Timing May Be Everything When Using Electrical Brain Stimulation to Boost Your Memory appeared first on Futurism.

Kategorie: Transhumanismus
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