Feature by Mr. J. Tate, Chief Intelligence Officer, bits&digits, on Peerlyst.com, published May 2016.
Over the last few months, we have seen news and cyber security companies’ PR campaigns publishing the “Newest Revelation” or “Next 0-Day.” Each referring to organizations or technologies claiming “significant flaws” inferring they’re the latest, greatest Cyber security researcher on the planet. Only later to find the company or technology vendor issued a counter statement indicating the incorrect nature of such claims.
We have seen this banter with companies such at Mail.Ru, Ashley Madison, PornHub (article linked) and many others. But why? Why in a world where we assume all read on the internet to be factual and accurate by all measures? First, I ask that you read the last sentence one more time. Funny how much it doesn’t make sense all of a sudden.
Being fair to the laymen and Google News subscribers, it’s a common practice in social media, corporate counsel, and even IT security Journalist to jump on the bandwagon of releasing the latest and greatest of security “news.” Simple and plain. What you are experiencing most times are “astroturfing.” Sharyl Attkisson explains this in her tell all expose. Media (social, traditional, and Cyber) has underlying control mechanisms for how stories are played, propagated, and distributed.
At the end of the day, as the old moniker goes – Sex Sells. Well, so does scandal, fraud and cyber security risks. Because Cyber Security is slowly becoming more of a Business Model than a Service Function. The marketing campaigns some of these companies use are more fodder than fact. However, as the title implies, there is always a bit of truth in every story.
Because a hacker claimed to have breached PornHub and Pornhub claims the hack is not true – DOES NOT mean there is not truth to the hacker’s claims. I will, for efforts of brevity, not go into the vulnerabilities demonstrated within the Pornhub environment based on the hacker’s claims. But what I do ask is that we all take a closer look at the communication banter of these stories before making a determination on which side to believe.
In every experience, there is a lesson. Learn that and learn life.