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Cyberattackers are Knocking; Secure the Front Door with BIOS Verification

first_imgAs Advanced Persistent Threats Rise, Dell’s BIOS Verification Approach Is the Secure Way ForwardEveryone can relate to the experience of booting up a computer – hitting the power button, hearing the startup sound, and ultimately seeing the home screen appear. But even some tech professionals may not be aware of what’s happening under the surface.When the CPU is booted up, the first thing it does is communicate with the flash memory on the motherboard to fetch a piece of code called the Basic Input Output System (BIOS). The BIOS’s job is to initialize the motherboard components, chipset and other hardware in the system. The BIOS on modern systems is based on the UEFI specification, however, for the purposes of this post, we will use the more general term BIOS to refer to this system firmware.This piece of code is highly privileged and trusted by the computer. It’s the first link in the chain of trust that extends from system reset to your applications, e-commerce transactions and everything else you do on your machine. For cybercriminals, this privileged role makes it an enticing target.If a cybercriminal is able to leverage a vulnerability that allows them access to BIOS-level privilege, it could target your motherboard and potentially cause your OS and hardware components to malfunction.  If an attacker gets this level of privilege it could be difficult to remediate by traditional methods, as the BIOS sits beneath the OS layer. BIOS malware has been shown to persist across hard drive wipes, OS reinstalls and other usual means of eradication.For these reasons, the BIOS serves as the foundation of other security layers, and protecting it is a vital part of a defense-in-depth strategy. OEMs, security vendors and IT pros employ a variety of methods to protect the BIOS. And as Cylance Principal Research Scientist Alex Matrosov discussed in a recent Black Hat presentation, Dell’s strategy is among the most comprehensive, including BIOS Lock Enable (BLE), SMM BIOS Write Protection (SMM_WP) and numerous other methods of BIOS protection that our competitors either don’t offer at all or don’t offer to the level of sophistication that Dell does.Another technology that sets us apart from other OEMs is our BIOS verification approach.BIOS verification tests the integrity of the BIOS before it executes, and can restore a known good copy when necessary. The difference from other vendors is that we use a secure cloud environment to compare and test an individual BIOS image against the official measurements held in the Dell BIOS lab. By conducting this test on an off-device environment, users can be assured that the post-boot image is not compromised as the testing takes place in a secure cloud platform and not on a potentially infected device.Some OEMs have tried to take a self-contained approach to verification by including a shadow copy of the BIOS on the motherboard and pre-boot code that checks the BIOS against the shadow copy. The problem with this method is that the “known good” BIOS copy lives on the potentially compromised hardware. So, if cybercriminals have tampered with the copy to match the compromised BIOS, it will make it difficult to see that an attack has even happened.Dell’s approach addresses these challenges in a more reliable way, employing a level of security that will detect modification to the BIOS even if a cyberattacker has gained physical control of the motherboard.The combination of data encryption and advanced threat prevention in one security suite with the added security of off-host BIOS verification provides a three-tier approach for securing data and ensuring overall system security and integrity both above and below the OS. This feature is available on all Dell commercial PCs running Intel 6th generation processors or higher with a Dell Endpoint Security Suite Enterprise license.The only thing evolving as quickly as today’s workforce are the cyber threats it faces. BIOS is the foundation for your most precious data and cyberattackers are knocking – will you be protected?  Learn more about keeping your Dell BIOS up to date in our knowledge base article.last_img read more

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Gievers extols ‘the power of one’

first_imgGievers extols ‘the power of one’ August 1, 2003 Jan Pudlow Associate Editor Regular News Associate EditorTo control behavior, children are given mind-altering drugs that at least one drug manufacturer now admits makes kids more depressed and suicidal.Foster children over the age of 18 were dumped on the streets July 1, thanks to the Florida Legislature that ended extended foster care to age 23 for those who stay in school.In some circuits in Florida, the buildings where dependency courts are held are so disgusting Charles Dickens would feel right at home.Ex parte discussions that would result in disbarment of civil litigators in “real court” are routine in dependency court.Those were the gloomy realities lawyer Karen Gievers described at the Public Interest Law Section luncheon at the Bar’s Annual Meeting in Orlando.But Gievers, recipient of PILS’ Hon. Hugh Glickstein Child Advocate of the Year Award, also delivered passionate words of encouragement about the power of lawyers to make lasting changes for foster children.Part of her upbeat message was what she called “breaking news” of the “first opinion on a foster care case from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals since 1987.”On June 26, the day before the PILS luncheon, Gievers was happy to report, the federal appellate court had affirmed an order of U.S. Middle District Court Judge Patricia Fawsett that had denied the Department of Children and Families’ motion to dismiss. The case involves allegations of a boy beaten and tied up in a foster home. With the department’s approval, the boy was later adopted by his abuser. Gievers said DCF officials “themselves described the abuse as the most egregious they’d ever seen when they finally intervened several years later.”Gievers quoted the federal judge panel — Joel Dubina, Stanley Marcus, and Peter Fay: “The gravamen of the allegations is that these individuals knowingly and deliberately ignored the physical, mental, and emotional harm being caused this child by the intentional infliction of known cruel and unusual punishment that shocks the conscience of any reasonable person.”“This is the first opinion (on a foster care case) the 11th Circuit has chosen to have published.. . recognizing that some things are not going to be tolerated,” Gievers said.“And even if the courts are not going to be open for prospective injunctive relief, they’re not going to close the federal courthouse doors to children whose trust has been horribly trampled by the system in monetary damage actions. Compensation could be had if things don’t go as they should. This case sends a major message of hope to all who are laboring in the child advocacy vineyard. Because, with this opinion, we can go to the defense lawyers that are hired by (DCF) and say, ‘Look, it shocked the conscience of the appellate court because they’re reasonable people. Now, what part of the argument are you going to adopt to try to justify your position today?’”Another ray of hope, Gievers said, is that the manufacturer of the antidepressant Paxil has recently admitted their product is not safe for kids.“That’s a wedge that we need, the camel’s nose under the tent to go ahead and ramp up our next constitutional major litigation to stop the routine drugging of children in foster care,” Gievers said. “Somewhere between 20 and 30 percent of every child in state custody is on these horrible drugs. And they are being given for the purpose of letting them cope with life. And if that makes you vomit, I apologize. It makes me want to vomit.”While the legal problems of foster children may seem daunting, Gievers’ message was that much good can be accomplished for the whole system when a single lawyer agrees to take on a single case.Gievers recalled her first pro bono case for foster children was prompted by Mel Martinez, president of the Academy of Florida Trial Lawyers in 1988.“When Mel was president, he urged all of us on the board of the academy to do our pro bono work for foster children, because there was no group of people in need of legal services more than these children who were stuck in state custody,” Gievers recalled.“Not because they had done anything wrong, but because their parents supposedly had. So I got the training. And I thought: This first case doesn’t seem so hard. There’s several children. The parents are not capable of providing for them. Parental rights should be terminated.“But they didn’t file a petition. So I asked the department attorney, ‘Why didn’t you file a petition?’“The answer I got was: ‘Well, we don’t believe in doing that.’“I said, ‘But how are these kids ever going to get to permanency?’“‘Well, I don’t care and I don’t know. We’re not filing a petition.’”“So we filed A through F, as the lawsuit became known, on behalf of six youngsters in that particular case,” Gievers said. “It’s been intriguing over the years as A through F was litigated and settled, and they promised they would fix the system and do better for the children. And A through F blended into Bonnie L. And Bonnie L. made progress over the years before the district court decided federal courts are not open to these foster kids who have dependency court judges to protect them.“When we would take depositions of department people, they would say things like, ‘Thanks to A through F, we have additional resources, and we keep siblings together now.’ Earlier this week, we heard testimony from the former supervisor here in Orlando: ‘Well, thanks to Bonnie L., our case load sizes have come down from 60 to 14.’“And I thought, if that’s true, it’s wonderful.. . . It proved that even being in the litigation arena, even if you don’t achieve success with a nice court opinion, that you can explain to the media and spread the word like Paul Revere went through the Boston area when the British were coming, ‘Look! Help for the foster kids is coming!’ Even when you don’t get that kind of opinion, things happen. It’s like throwing the old pebble in the pond and the ripples go out, and you don’t ever know where they’re going to end up.”Gievers, the first college graduate in her family, said her training in law school and civil litigation has made her what others have described as like a pitbull chomping on the DCF bone, as a dogged advocate for foster children.“The law makes us little short people, the underdogs of the world, equal in court to the most powerful companies, to the biggest government agencies. And if the Constitution continues to have meaning, then our judicial system will be the arenas in which rights are protected,” Gievers said.“It is very depressing, on occasion, to represent these youngsters, because the lives they live are so horrible compared to the lives we had and the lives of our own children.”She recalled the time she asked Sampson, the oldest of the A through F children, to write down things DCF could do to improve how it takes care of children. Sampson, a very bright child, wrote Gievers a two-page essay.“Even ignoring the misspellings and the grammar mistakes, it was clear that his message was: He appreciated the department for giving him and his five brothers and sisters a place to sleep and eat. It’s nice when they could see each other, and he was glad that two of the younger ones were adopted, and they had a for-real family. He hoped that at some point he and his other brothers and sisters would be able to have a for-real family. And meanwhile, he wanted to do what he could when he became an adult so that he could have a home for the rest of his brothers and sisters that weren’t adopted.“This was a kid who had been in foster care for 12 years at this point, virtually his entire life as of that point,” Gievers continued. “And I thought to myself, ‘You know, we hear about the power of one. And if this one kid who has been through so much hadn’t given up hope for having a future, despite what’s happened to him, then how in God’s name can the rest of us, who have all of these other privileges and luxuries and ease of lifestyle and quality of life? Who the heck do we think we are to even think about giving up in our advocacy of these youngsters?“The simple fact of the matter is we cannot give up and remain true to the goal that each of us should have, and, I believe, does have for every child in our society.”center_img Gievers extols ‘the power of one’last_img read more

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Critical year-1 success sees Bethard renew with SBTech as lead betting partner

first_img Submit Share TVBET passes GLI test for five live games in Malta and Italy August 25, 2020 Related Articles Erik Skarp – BethardIndustry platform provider SBTech will continue to act as the lead betting services provider for new European multi-market brand Bethard (, after securing a comprehensive contact extension for a further five years.Launched at the start of 2018, Bethard details that SBTech’s complete sportsbook provisions have played an instrumental part in the new betting incumbent achieving its year-1 growth targets and expectations.Updating investors, Erik Skarp, Chief Executive of Bethard Group, backed SBTech as lead supplier: “Our partnership with SBTech has been a significant growth driver for the business across key markets,” he said. “I’m delighted we have agreed on a long-term extension in line with our rapid expansion into a host of new and emerging territories.“The SBTech sportsbook is hugely powerful and provides us with great flexibility, differentiation and speed to market which mirrors our existing and new markets strategy. Our continuing relationship with SBTech means the future is very bright indeed.”Furthermore, SBTech helped Bethard scale a critical World Cup (Russia 2018) period for the new bookmaker.During Russia 2018, Bethard launched its bold “The Zlatan Challenge” –a unique World Cup prediction tournament fronted by Swedish football star Zlatan Ibrahimović with a total prize pool of €200,000.Having established Bethard within the saturated Nordic betting markets. Skarp reveals that year-2 will see the brand broaden its international footprint.Andrew Cochrane – SBTechBacking Bethard’s future ambitions, Andrew Cochrane, CCO of SBTech, said: “The extension of our agreement with Bethard is a testament to the increasing value of our partnership and the high level of trust we’ve built with the team over the past few years.“We work closely with our operators to grow their revenues and have a proven track record of delivering above average market growth. Our goal is to always provide our customers with superior solutions that deliver standout value in the most competitive regulated territories, and I anticipate even greater success for both companies as the latest chapter in the Bethard story unfolds.” Kambi and DraftKings agree on final closure terms July 24, 2020 Share Kambi takes control of Churchill Downs BetAmerica sportsbook August 28, 2020 StumbleUponlast_img read more

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Evolved Talent Agency enters joint venture with ICM Partners

first_imgEvolved Talent Agency, an agency that specialises in representing esports players and content creators, has partnered with ICM Partners, a talent agency that typically deals in television, movies, concerts, and production arts.Entering a joint venture partnership, ICM Partners will provide “ancillary opportunities and strategies” for clients of Evolved.Peter Trinh, an agent for the international and independent film department of ICM Partners, will oversee the day-to-day operations involved with the partnership alongside Bennett Sherman, an Digital Ventures agent for ICM Partners.Chris Silbermann, Managing Director of ICM Partners discussed entering the esports industry: “As we continue to grow the agency strategically and opportunistically, there is no doubt esports are on a straight-line upward trajectory with exponential growth ahead. Evolved under [CEO] Ryan Morrison has become a force in this dynamic industry, and we are excited to partner with them to bring added value to our new clients.”Ryan Morrison, Co-founder and CEO of Evolved Talent Agency added: “Once we got to know the team at ICM, we grew to appreciate their true entrepreneurial, nuanced approach to client representation and believe this is a great move for our clients and our agency.”Some of the clients under Evolved Talent Agency include the likes of: Overwatch players Brandon “Seagull” Larned, Ji-hyeok “birdring” Kim, André “IDDQD” Dahlström, and Lane “Surefour” Roberts, League of Legends player Apollo “Apollo” Price, and cosplayer Stella Chuu.Esports Insider says: As professional players and content creators grow more and more popular, the need for them to be represented properly becomes more and more evident. IEM has a wealth of experience in a number of entertainment sectors, so it seems like a good partner for Evolved.Sign up to our newsletter!last_img read more

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