14 million US businesses are at risk of a hacker threat

“Most small-business owners take the attitude of ‘Why would anybody care about me? I’m just the little guy.’ It’s because you’re the little guy that you’re of interest,” says Hemu Nigam, founder of SSP Blue, an internet security consultant business, and the former vice president of internet enforcement at the Motion Picture Association of America. “Hackers love small businesses [because] they don’t have the resources to put in high-end cybersecurity protection and they may not be consciously aware they are

Source: 14 million US businesses are at risk of a hacker threat

How a fish tank helped hack a casino – The Washington Post

“This one is the most entertaining and clever thinking by hackers I’ve seen,” said Hemu Nigam, a former federal prosecutor for computer crimes and current chief executive of SSP Blue, a cybersecurity company.

Source: How a fish tank helped hack a casino – The Washington Post

Medical records will no longer appear in Google search results – The Washington Post

“In the medical space, though, there is nothing more invasive towards one’s privacy than having a medical record indexed in a Google search that millions of people can see,” said Hemu Nigam, the chief executive of SSP Blue, a company that specializes in cybersecurity affairs. “This is a great move, but why did it take so long?”

Source: Medical records will no longer appear in Google search results – The Washington Post

The Emergence of Blue…

SSP Blue is a personal endeavor.  Safety, security, and privacy online are issues that I care about.  As a father, I find comfort in knowing my family is safe online.  As a businessman, I find comfort in knowing transactions, plans, and communications are secure.  And, as an Internet user, I find comfort in knowing that my personal information is protected and my privacy is intact.  As a society, these are necessary comforts we all care about.

I started SSP Blue to provide strategic business counsel to companies who recognize the value of these necessary comforts and to raise awareness amongst all of us about how to navigate safely and securely online.

So, where does “SSP Blue” come from?

Often safety, security, and privacy are treated as mutually exclusive, when in fact they are mutually inclusive.  “SSP” – Safety, Security, Privacy – must work together hand in hand for us to be able to navigate successfully online.  Thus, putting “SSP” into the name expresses our core mission.   And “Blue” signifies the holistic strategies and tactics that must be implemented in order to reach the proper balance of SSP.  Companies and citizens alike need blue-prints for action.

Much like the name, the logo with intersecting petals of similar blue tones integrated into a soothing image has its own story as well.  Online safety, security, and privacy are often tough issues to grasp and deal with.  When visiting the site or working with us, we want you to feel a sense of calmness and comfort while recognizing the intersection amongst SSP.  SSP Blue can help provide the comfort that comes from knowing that we’re providing solutions that protect us online.  As much as SSP can branch out into different directions, at the core they are really shades of each other originating from the same place – a necessary comfort for all of us.

Why would so much thought go in to one name and one logo? Mostly because that is how much thought goes into everything we do at SSP Blue.

SSP Blue, your blueprint for safety, security, and privacy.

Hackers Unite

The thieves who made off with more than $2.5M from Citibank and caused the bank to issue 100,000 replacement bank cards have highlighted an alarming trend. Hackers are evolving. And, they are organizing and uniting. They even have a Twitter account. Before the advent of the Internet, we called these hackers “robbers” or “criminals” or the “mafia.” However, now that the Internet has provided a way to enter the front door through the digital underground, hacking has evolved in to a disastrous enterprise.

I’m seeing the evolution of four kinds of hackers emerging into cohesive groups that we need to pay close attention to.

Mobsters: The hackers who attacked Citibank are probably “mobster” hackers. Mobsters are hackers who are connected to large-scale criminal enterprises bringing new meaning to the phrase “organized crime.” In some cases, crime families are hiring hacking groups to procure log-in information for one site knowing that many consumers today are using the same log-in for their financial sites as well. Citibank seems like a perfect example of this kind of activity.

Taunters: Taunting hackers are just thumbing their noses at anyone who dares to believe they have good online security systems in place. These kinds of hacker are breaking security settings, stealing email addresses, and bypassing firewalls just to show that it can be done, usually to the great embarrassment of the company being preyed upon. The hackers who keep breaching Sony’s systems and the CIA website are most likely taunters.

Activists: Activist hackers seem to have taken a nod from Taunters. While the act of hacking remains criminal, hackers who are breaching security to support a social cause aren’t in it for the money. The hi-jacking of the PBS website to protest the Frontline story on Wikileaks is a prime example as are the attacks on Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, and Sarah Palin. These are more like sit-ins, road blocks, and Green Peace protests.

Anarchists: The fourth and final kind of hackers are those who are working to dismantle governments, disrupt the lives of entire populations, or shut down some branch of government. Anarchist hackers may be engaged in what some might call terrorists activities and others might call citizen uproars or even revolutions. (On a side note, when sponsored by nation-states against enemies, they fall under counter-intelligence activities as well. See unleashing worms).

Whenever those destined to engage in criminal activity of any kind begin to unite and organize, good citizens must pay serious attention. Metamorphosis is a dynamic process, and the hacking evolution is no different. As certain groups gain strength and numbers, allegiances will shift and factions will break.

And as they declare war on each other, the good citizens of the world, like you and I, can find ourselves in a heap of collateral damage.