A Review of the Best News of the Week on AI, IoT, & Mobile Security

Smartphone location data can be used to identify and track anyone (NYTimes, Dec 23 2019)
In today’s smartphone economy, hiding your location has become a major challenge.

The Pentagon’s AI Chief Prepares for Battle (Wired, Dec 18 2019)
Lt. Gen. Jack Shanahan doesn’t want killer robots—but he does want artificial intelligence to occupy a central role in warfighting.

Facebook removes accounts with AI-generated profile photos (Ars Technica, Dec 23 2019)
Likely the first use of AI to support an inauthentic social media campaign.

Filter Out the Noise
Since I started this curated newsletter in June 2017, I’ve clipped ~12,000 articles and narrowed them down into the best 20 per day & best 15 per week. This is my favorite way to cut through all the security marketing and hype. If you’re enjoying it, tell a friend. If you hate it, tell an enemy.
Thanks! – Lucas Samaras

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Brazil to create national artificial intelligence strategy (ZDNet, Dec 24 2019)
The plan aims to use AI to boost competitiveness and productivity and address issues such as social inequality.

Top 25 AI Startups Who Raised The Most Money In 2019 (Forbes, Dec 22 2019)
SparkCognition – Raised $100M from a Series C round on October 8th. QOMPLX – Raised $78.6M from a Series A round on July 23rd.

We Tested Ring’s Security. It’s Awful (VICE, Dec 17 2019)
Ring lacks basic security features, making it easy for hackers to turn the company’s cameras against its customers.

Apple, Google, and Amazon team up to create “CHIP,” a new smart home standard (Ars Technica, Dec 18 2019)
Will this be the one smart home standard to rule them all or just another entry?

The Hacker In My Ring Camera: A Tale of Trolls (VICE, Dec 19 2019)
You installed the camera to keep your family secure, then hackers took over.

Lousy IoT Security (Schneier on Security, Dec 19 2019)
DTEN makes smart screens and whiteboards for videoconferencing systems. Forescout found that their security is terrible:
“In total, our researchers discovered five vulnerabilities of four different kinds:
Data exposure: PDF files of shared whiteboards (e.g. meeting notes) and other sensitive files (e.g., OTA — over-the-air updates) were stored in a publicly accessible AWS S3 bucket that also lacked TLS encryption (CVE-2019-16270, CVE-2019-16274)….”

5G connections to grow from 10 million in 2019 to 1.01 billion in 2023 (Help Net Security, Dec 19 2019)
The number of 5G connections is forecast to grow from roughly 10 million in 2019 to 1.01 billion in 2023, IDC reveals. This represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 217.2% over the 2019-2023 forecast period. By 2023, 5G is expected to represent 8.9% of all mobile device connections.

Apple wants to bypass carriers and beam internet data directly to iPhones via satellites (Fast Company, Dec 20 2019)
By creating its own data delivery system, Apple could give its customers a more uniform experience across its devices, as well as create another recurring, subscription-based revenue source.

SIM Swapping Attacks: What They Are & How to Stop Them (Dark Reading, Dec 23 2019)
Fraudsters with social engineering skills are hijacking cell phone SIM cards to access victims’ bitcoin and social media accounts.

US Navy Bans TikTok, Citing ‘Cybersecurity Threat’ (PCMag, Dec 22 2019)
Both the United States Navy and the Army are instructing service members to avoid ByteDance’s TikTok on government-issued smartphones. Lawmakers suggest the popular app poses a threat to national security. ByteDance, however, denies any close relationship with the Chinese government.