Archive for Data Security

Digital Data – Is It Any Safer From Loss ?

Old documentsIt’s not that long-ago that we wrote everything down in books and ledgers. These days because virtually everyone has a computer, our information is frequently written to a hard disk drive instead. Technology has really brought about this change in our behaviour but has it made our files and folders any more secure as a consequence?

Digital data is not totally safe. The nearest you could get is to save copies of your folders in a fireproof and waterproof safe. This could at least give you a bit of time to recover them from a risky situation.

Many people have abandoned writing anything down entirely. I know I have. People store not only their business but their personal files like photographs and music to their own hard drives too. If all of us take music for instance, an album or CD could become scratched and won’t play. Scratching a hard drive case is not going to cause the folders to be lost, but scratching the actual face of the hard drive – the part that holds the information is going to have exactly the same effect.

Old pictures may be repaired provided that you still have the original negatives but other documents held on paper will fade over time and risk being completely destroyed by mildew and damp conditions. Frequently old records are kept in garages and lofts – these storage locations are hardly perfect and the temperatures may differ considerably. Often there is frequently a higher moisture content that is sadly often fatal to paper.

It is important that you manage the data on your own hard drive. You might think that as the files are stored on the hard drive it will be safe but this is not true. Documents and folders are easily deleted or overwritten, if you are not focused. If this happens, you’ll want a data recovery service to recover your documents and folders.

Data recovery services are used when there exists some kind of data loss. If the missing data is of no value then there is not much purpose in using a data recovery specialist. When the lost data is valuable and is needed a company supplying data recovery services can be contacted who can have the ability to recover the missing files and folders. These companies specialise in fixing broken hard drives and retrieving the files and folders from them. Of course, when the information you might have is backed up somewhere this minimises the likelihoods of data loss and the need to use a data recovery support company. I’d recommend you look for a data recovery reviews site and see which companies are recommended. An example company with a good reputation in the UK is Datlabs. If you find yourself with a broken hard disk holding data you need contact a reputable data recovery service. There are numerous data recovery businesses but only some of them are really any good. Simply go online and seek out a few data recovery company reviews. These should give you an idea of the recommended data-recovery service you can contact to recover your hard disk drive data.

Angela Merkel’s Phone Hacked by US…

Germany has summoned the US ambassador in Berlin around promises the US monitored German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s mobile phone.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle will meet US envoy John Emerson after in what is viewed as an unusual measure between close friends.

However, it left open the question of whether calls were listened to formerly.

French President Francois Hollande had already called for the issue to be place within the strategy of the summit, where EU leaders are anticipated to discuss Europe’s digital economy, economic recovery and immigration.

‘Completely unacceptable’
The German government has not said how it received the hint about the alleged US spying. But news magazine Der Spiegel, which has printed reports predicated on content from former CIA contractor Edward Snowden, said the guidance had come from its investigations.
Continue reading the story
Press review

Germany’s Berliner Zeitung regrets that “just now does the government appear to really understand what it is happening”

Press aghast at latest US spying claims
State-observation of phone calls has a particular resonance in Germany – Mrs Merkel herself grew up in East Germany, where mobile-tap was pervasive.

Her spokesman said the German leader “views such practices… as completely unacceptable” and had needed a “complete and comprehensive explanation”.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said the US “is not tracking and cannot monitor the communications of the chancellor”.

German ministers’ phones have purportedly been protected using technology from security company Secusmart since 2009. Secusmart said in March that German government officials could be issued with new, highlysecured technology made for Blackberry mobile phones.

A German ADVICE technology expert told the BBC that security services for lots of countries may have intercepted the chancellor’s calls before she had complete encryption.

Numerous US friends have expressed fury on the Snowden-based spying allegations.

‘No business as usual’
Germany’s press echoed a sense of indignation, with a frontpage comments Sueddeutscher Zeitung – 1 of the country’s most respected newspapers – referring to the “biggest possible affront”.

German Defence Minister Thomas de Maiziere said it will not be possible to come back to business as usual. That is much more than a tiff that’ll blow over easily, the BBC’s Stephen Evans reports from Berlin.

President Obama had guaranteed Chancellor Merkel in June that German citizens were not being generally spied upon.

Edward Snowden – A Timeline

This timeline deals with events from June-August 2013.

Useful Link:

Edward Snowden, a former Central Intelligence Agency technical worker, is the wellspring of one of the worst info leaks in US history. Materials supplied by Mr Snowden for the media allege the US has conducted widespread and illegal surveillance of its own citizens and other states. The BBC looks at the way the relationship has developed since it broke in June.
Scandal starts

6 June 2013: Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald reports the US National Security Agency (NSA) is accumulating the phone records of millions of Verizon customers beneath a top secret court order giving the government unlimited ability to get communications data for a span.

7 June: The Washington Post report and Guardian the NSA is gathering data under a previously undisclosed surveillance programme called Prism, and obtaining the systems of US internet giants including Facebook and Google. The programme enables officials to accumulate material including live chats, emails and search histories.

8 June: US President Barack Obama says the government surveillance programmes reach “the right balance” between security and privacy and are closely supervised by Congress and also the courts.
Snowden named and in Hong Kong

9 June: Edward Snowden, 29, is named as the origin of the intelligence leaks. Speaking from Hong Kong, he describes why he went public.

10 June: Mr Snowden checks out of his Hong Kong hotel and his whereabouts remain unknown since it’s rumoured the US is pursuing a criminal investigation against him.

11 June: The EU demands US assurances that Europeans’ rights aren’t being infringed by the just-revealed surveillance programmes. Mr Snowden’s company, defence contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, says it has fired the infrastructure analyst for breaking its ethics code.

12 June: Mr Snowden tells the South China Morning Post from a secret place in Hong Kong that he’ll fight any effort to extradite him. The Speaker of the US House of Representatives John Boehner describes him as a traitor. British citizens their intelligence agencies and the UK guarantees US are functioning within the law.

13 June: Mr Snowden says the US government is hacking computers in mainland China and Hong Kong for years. NSA Director Keith Alexander tells the US Senate that surveillance programmes have interrupted dozens of terror plots.

14 June: FBI Director Robert Mueller says Mr Snowden has caused the US “considerable damage” and tells Congress the US will hunt him down and prosecute him.

15 June: Hundreds of protesters march to the US consulate in Hong Kong, demanding local authorities protect Mr Snowden.

17 June: Mr Snowden denies he is a Chinese agent and says US officials, in labelling him a traitor, have ruined any chance of the fair trial.

18 June: Mr Snowden’s dad, Lon, issues a public plea urging his son not to commit “treason”.

19 June: NSA Director Alexander tells the surveillance programmes to the US House intelligence committee leaked by Mr Snowden helped thwart 50 strikes since 2001.
From Hong Kong to Moscow

20 June: Wikileaks creator Julian Assange tries to broker a deal to allow asylum to Mr Snowden in Iceland.

22 June: US prosecutors file a criminal charge, charging Mr Snowden with larceny and espionage. His extradition is requested by the White House from Hong Kong.

23 June: as extradition pressure builds Mr Snowden flies from Hong Kong to Moscow. Ecuador’s foreign minister confirms on Twitter that Mr Snowden has requested asylum there. Ecuador sheltered Mr Assange in its London embassy for the previous year, and has has an extradition treaty with all the US but allows for political asylum exemptions.

24 June: White House spokesman Jay Carney urges Russia to return Mr Snowden, and says the fashion of his own departure from Hong Kong would “unquestionably affect” on US relations with China.
June Vladimir Putin, right, and Barack Obama in Northern Ireland, June 2013 Relationships between the USA and Russia were already anxious on 17

25 June: China describes US accusations that it facilitated the departure of Mr Snowden from Hong Kong as “groundless and unacceptable”. Russian President Vladimir Putin confirms Mr Snowden is really in the transit region of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport and stays a free guy. US Secretary of State John Kerry requests Russia transfer the “fugitive of justice” to the Usa.

27 June: Ecuador warns it could take weeks to rule on Mr Snowden’s asylum bid.

28 June: Mr Snowden’s dad, Lon, ask US Attorney General Eric Holder for “ironclad assurances” his son’s rights will probably be protected should he return for the US.

29-30 June: Germany’s Der Spiegel magazine says it has seen a secret file supplied by Mr Snowden showing the US bugged EU offices in Washington and at UN headquarters in Big Apple. European officials demand “complete clarification” from the US.
Snowden’s bids for asylum
Edward Snowden at Sheremetyevo Airport in Moscow (12 July 2013) July Edward Snowden is seen for the very first time in three weeks on 12

1 July: Mr Snowden applies to Russia for political asylum; President Putin says he should stop leaking US secrets if he wants to remain. President Obama recognizes “high level” discussions with Moscow on extradition.

2 July: Mr Snowden withdraws his asylum request to Russia and sends requests to 20 other states, according to Wikileaks.

3-5 July: Bolivian President Evo Morales’ plane is redirected to Austria amid suspicion that Mr Snowden is on board. President Morales threatens to shut the US embassy in Bolivia in response.

6 July: Nicaragua and Venezuela offer Mr Snowden asylum.

12 July: Mr Snowden emerges at Sheremetyevo airport for the very first time in three weeks, saying as he was not able to travel to Latin America he sought asylum in Russia.
Glenn Greenwald and David Miranda embrace inside an airport Glenn Greenwald greets Mr Miranda August as he arrives in Brazil on 19

1 August: Mr Snowden leaves the airport and enters Russian land after trying to get temporary asylum. The US says Russia’s conclusion is “incredibly unsatisfactory”.

7-9 August: President Obama cancels a meeting with Russian President Putin following Russia’s asylum determination. He promises “proper reforms” to ensure greater supervision of US surveillance programmes.

16 August: Citing documents leaked by Mr Snowden, the Washington Post reports the NSA broke privacy rules and overstepped its legal authority a large number of times in the previous couple of years.

19-20 August: Mr Greenwald’s associate, David Miranda, is detained under terror laws at London’s Heathrow airport for nine hours on his way to Rio de Janeiro. The citizen allegedly has his mobile phone, notebook, DVDs and other things seized. UK politicians demand an explanation. The US denies involvement but recognizes it was given a “heads up” from British officials concerning the detention.