This week:

3 – You can be anyone you want to be online.

2 – You don’t need to store everything online.

1 – You can still make a difference.
 


 

3 – Online, you can be anyone you want to be.

“We are getting closer to a world where nothing can be trusted online”.

That’s according to Alex Banks in a recent LinkedIn post about DeepFaceLive, a tool that can perform real-time face-swapping during live broadcasts and video calls. Check out the video in Alex’s post (and also accessible on YouTube). According to Easy With AI, “DeepFaceLive is an AI model available [for free to anyone] that allows you to face swap in real time using trained face models”. But of more concern, “users can also train their own face models using DeepFaceLab for higher quality or better face matching. The app also includes a Face Animator module which allows you to control a static face picture using video or your own face from the camera”.

So what? We knew that someday, we’d need to add video meetings / calls to the list of things we’d need to be wary of. That someday is today.
 


 

2 – You don’t need to store everything online.

“A Finnish national has been sentenced to six years and three months in prison, after stealing thousands of patient records from a psychotherapy clinic and using them to blackmail [the patients]”.

This is according to a recent report on Dark Reading. It follows a cyber attack in 2018 from Vastaamo, a Finnish psychotherapy facility, which resulted in the theft of sensitive information (including therapy session notes). The criminal then threatened patients of the clinic that he would publish their sensitive information online if they didn’t pay him a ransom of €200, with the ransom increasing to €500 if payment was not received within 24 hours. Apparently, he was charged with over 20,000 blackmail attempts.

So what? I hope other clinics around the world have done whatever they can to ensure their current security does not become a future source of distress for their patients. And anyway, why does everything need to be online?
 


 

1 – You can still make a difference.

“A Europol-led operation has shut down a dozen phone scam centers, and arrested 21 suspects [..] And the thieves may have got away with swindling even more victims if it hadn’t been for a bank teller in Germany.”

This is according to a recent report in The Register, describing how this criminal network was responsible for thousands of daily scam calls, including fake police calls, investment scams, and romance cons. Police became aware of the gang after a staff member in a bank branch became concerned when a customer asked to withdraw €100,000. The bank teller’s suspicions led the customer to alert the police. During the subsequent investigation, police were able to intercept 1.3 million conversations over a period of just 4 months.

So what? Humans can be a weak link in security. But they can also be the strongest link. Just one person can be the key security defence to stop a cyber crime.