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Killexams : Exin Foundation techniques - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/EX0-103 Search results Killexams : Exin Foundation techniques - BingNews https://killexams.com/pass4sure/exam-detail/EX0-103 https://killexams.com/exam_list/Exin Killexams : Surface finishing techniques for medical implants

Nowadays, medical implant manufacturers are asked to continually elevate their surface finish and profile accuracy standards, with medical implants more in demand than ever before. Kemet International Ltd has spent many years automating, developing, and perfecting precision surface finishing processes, specifically for the medical industry.

Surface finishing techniques play a major part in the development of both medical devices and orthopedic implants. For that essential shine, medical equipment needs to be finished efficiently - which is achieved by selecting the right surface finishing tool.

There is a high demand for dimensional accuracy within orthopedic implants, which can be achieved by using lapping and polishing processes. In order to achieve professional performance, medical devices also have intricate parts, such as blades, that need to be finished perfectly.

The risk in these devices - in terms of sharpness, roughness, dimensions, alignment, and so on - can be eliminated with this technique. Naturally, therefore, an accurate measurement is required, which can be provided courtesy of the surface finishing techniques mentioned above.

Surface finishing

Image credit: Shutterstock / Denis---S

Kemet process development laboratories have successfully developed special-purpose polishing machines for a wide range of medical implants. The latest development from Kemet is the KemiSphere II: otherwise known as a bench top spherical/ball lapper/polisher, which can lap and polish spherical forms to more than five microns roundness with a mirror finish.

The process is simple and consists of two stages, offering an extremely economical and highly repeatable way of processing spherical forms to a wide variety of surface finishes. The system can also process a myriad of different materials either to be lapped as an individual component or to match lap spherical forms together.

Not only can the new product from Kemet process all joint sizes and materials up to 60 mm in diameter (or 100 mm with the floor-standing version), but Kemet also offers to demonstrate its process within its testing labs by producing test data and samples so that all questions can be answered prior to ordering a machine.

This also means that machines can be sent pre-programmed and ready for use regardless of their intended application.

When it comes to the manufacture of tibial trays and hips, most of the production costs are associated with process consumables and, as a manufacturer of these, Kemet is there to help reduce them.

More importantly, Kemet’s expertise in surface finishing allows the company to develop new processes and consumables while ensuring increased productivity and reduced cost per part.

The improvements to the process - be it less rework, faster throughput or lower consumption - tend to outweigh the cost associated with introducing new consumables.

The Kemet Tibial Polishing Cell has been specifically developed for finishing large production quantities of knee replacement parts, such as Tibial Trays. A typical cell contains Kemet smoothing, polishing and cleaning systems.

Manufacturers now have the added benefits of improved product quality, greatly reduced costs and faster production. All Kemet Polishing Systems, be they small manual processes or large fully automated cells, are serviced and supported by Kemet.

The company is also a key manufacturer of polishing consumables and can take full responsibility for all aspects of production relating to one of its finishing processes. At present, all of the process development work is being carried out free of charge.

A contributing factor to making the company a global leader in this technology is Kemet’s ability to develop, supply and support such processes. In addition to precision surface finishing, Kemet also offers:

  • Ultrasonic cleaning tanks ranging from 40 to 160 liters, with over 400 high-performance formulations to choose from.
  • Aqueous cleaning fluids are perfectly suited for the medical industry with validation standards of ISO 19227-2018 and biocompatibility standards of ISO 10993-18.
  • Passivation lines that comply with ISO 7 clean room.
  • Vacuum solvent cleaners - minimal loss of solvent, significantly cutting process costs.

Contact Kemet today to find out more about the solutions provided, or to arrange lapping or polishing trials.

Established in 1938, Kemet International Limited is at the forefront of precision lapping and polishing technology, using Diamond Compound and Diamond Slurry, which are manufactured in house to ISO 9001:2015 quality standards. We offer innovative solutions to operations which demand precision finish and close tolerance. Kemet's highly specialised and accurate lapping machines can machine a wide variety of materials for numerous applications.

Operating at the forefront of orthopaedic implant polishing technology for over 20 years, Kemet International Ltd has transformed the quality and cost of manufacture of tibial trays and hip heads/cups.

Kemet's process Laboratories are fully equipped with the latest range of Lapping Machines, Polishing Machines, Ultrasonic Cleaners, Mould Polishing and Metallographic & Geological thin sectioning Equipment to carry out tests on customers' samples. In addition, our team of industrial chemists are able to manufacture bespoke diamond lapping and diamond polishing compounds and diamond suspensions.

Let Kemet help you develop a new process, reduce costs or solve immediate technical problems. Kemet offer training courses covering all aspects of lapping and polishing in our Lapping Laboratories or at your own premises. Kemet International actively takes part in the leading Trade Shows and Exhibitions and have received many awards for our achievements internationally.

Sponsored Content Policy: News-Medical.net publishes articles and related content that may be derived from sources where we have existing commercial relationships, provided such content adds value to the core editorial ethos of News-Medical.Net which is to educate and inform site visitors interested in medical research, science, medical devices and treatments.

Sun, 20 Nov 2022 19:49:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.news-medical.net/whitepaper/20221121/Surface-finishing-techniques-for-medical-implants.aspx
Killexams : How To Build an Iconic Brand: Techniques Learned From Successful Brands

While I was on vacation with my family recently, I enjoyed a Starbucks latte by the marina. Of course, as an entrepreneur, I couldn't just sit and mindlessly enjoy my morning coffee. I looked at the ubiquitous logo on the cup and thought about the massive brand that Starbucks has built over the years. It all began over 50 years ago in Seattle, Washington. Fifty years is a long time to build a brand. Naturally, they have faced issues along the way, from supply chain struggles to market saturation, but they continued to move forward and are now the third largest fast food chain in the world after McDonald's and Subway.

The Legendary Pink's Hot Dogs

It also made me think about another iconic brand, someone I recently had the pleasure of chatting with. If you are from the LA area, you are likely familiar with Richard Pink of the legendary Pink's Hot Dogs. Pink's was started by Richard's parents over 80 years ago. They borrowed $50 from their parents to purchase a hot dog cart. Richard's mother wheeled the cart about two miles, to what is now West Hollywood. The cart needed electricity, which they didn't have access to, so they made a deal with a nearby hardware store to buy an extension cord, and in exchange, they could plug it into the hardware store's outlet. Richard says his parents taught him the value of hard work.

Pink's could have remained a simple hot dog cart since Richard's parents didn't want to expand, but as Richard became more involved, he began to appreciate the value of the brand his parents had built. He wanted to scale and grow the business, and he searched for ways to continue to build the brand with minimal investment. Pink's Hot Dogs already had a reputation among the film crowd as it was well-located near the studios. In fact, Orson Welles holds the all-time record for the number of Pink's hot dogs eaten in one setting—18.

Pink's has always been involved in charity work, from their current "Let's Help Ukraine" hot dog to their "Chili Dogs for Charity" promotion. They gained traction from the publicity, as well as the growth in interest in food and travel television shows. Cross-promotion is a great way to gain exposure without breaking the bank. Fortuitous timing along with some clever brand-building ideas helped this brand become the icon that it is today.

My company has been around since 2015, a short time compared with the two icons I discuss above. How old is your business? You may be a startup struggling with building your brand, but don't ever provide up. Starbucks would not be where it is today if its leaders had given up.

Five Brand-Building Techniques

1. Be consistent. Your message is key, whether you're trying to build a global brand or just staying laser-focused on developing a local market. Make sure your mission statement and company values align with your brand to ensure the continuity of your message.

2. Show up every single day. It is often not the most intelligent or talented person who is the most successful, but rather the person who shows up every single day and doesn't provide up.

3. Write blog posts. Share your unique knowledge and experience on your company website and forums like Linkedin regularly. Figure out what makes you different from your competition and let people know about it.

4. Use social media. I try to post brief videos with ideas and inspiration, like today's thoughts on branding, inspired by my latte. You never know when inspiration will strike, so be ready to grab your phone and create some content.

5. Engage in active networking. I am in several networking and leadership organizations, where we meet regularly to connect and share industry knowledge. I look at every encounter as an opportunity. From the person sitting next to me on the plane to someone I meet at a convention, I truly believe there are no coincidences in life. Your paths have crossed for a reason, and it's up to you to find out why.

Over time, if you apply these techniques with consistent effort, you will create a successful brand not only for today but, perhaps like Pink's Hot Dogs, for the next generation.

Fri, 11 Nov 2022 09:11:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.newsweek.com/how-build-iconic-brand-techniques-learned-successful-brands-1758375
Killexams : 5 effective meditation techniques to practice at work

Increasing work demands and workplace stress levels can take a toll on your mental health. Employees may be unable to perform to their full potential and realise their life goals if they are experiencing such negative effects on their bodies and brains. Practising meditation at the workplace has many proven benefits like reduced stress and improved focus. Increased creativity, productivity and improved relationships with colleagues are some of the great results of meditation one can attain at work. According to the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence, mindfulness and meditation are the most effective ways in reducing work stress and poor mental health symptoms while creating a positive impact on employees’ mental well-being. (Also read: Tips to handle stress at workplace)

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Raman Mittal, Co-founder and meditation expert, Idanim, shared five effective meditation techniques that you can practice at work.

1. Mantra Meditation: Creating a positive aura around you in a difficult situation may work wonders. Think of a mantra or a motivating phrase and keep repeating it in your mind. It will act as a tool to help release tension in your mind and boost awareness. It can make a lot of difference, especially if you are having trouble concentrating or getting in the right frame of mind. Mantra chanting (or any conscious affirmations) also unblocks our energy flow and rejuvenates our mind and body.

2. Breathing Meditation: Do you feel anxious before a presentation or before meetings? Try deep breathing for five minutes. Deep breathing is one of the most effective methods to keep calm. Taking a deep breath enables more airflow in your body, which calms down your nerves, reducing stress and anxiety. So, next time you are in a stressful situation, start taking deep and conscious breaths and you will notice an immediate sense of relaxation.

3. Walking Meditation: There are times when you are in a stressful situation at work and you feel like running away from it. It is obvious that you cannot run away from work or leave it. However, taking a refreshing walk with awareness enables the human mind to observe things better. This help the mind and body to relax. I’m sure, this technique will definitely help you take a break from stressful working hours.

4. Body Scan: Have you been feeling unproductive lately or your mind keeps on wandering? Body scan meditation will help manage your physical and emotional feelings when you are overwhelmed, sad, or anxious. Pay attention to your whole body and how it feels, scanning from your feet to the top of your head in a slow and deliberate progression. This will help you relieve tension and return back to work mindfully. This the technique is a great health meditation way to relax your body and mind both at the same time.

5. Visualization Meditation: If you feel you need a little escape, a visualization exercise might be ideal. Think about where you’d go if you could be anywhere right now. It could be a bench in a peaceful garden or a sandy shore on a summer day. You might prefer a rock overlooking a waterfall in a forest. Now, set a timer for 5-10 minutes and enjoy the tranquillity of your place. Picture every detail - the sights, sounds, and smells. Enjoy the scenery. Let your mind wander to your happy place whenever you need to relax your mind during work.

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Mon, 14 Nov 2022 23:14:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.hindustantimes.com/lifestyle/health/5-effective-meditation-techniques-to-practice-at-work-101668496388112.html
Killexams : Basic techniques in compositing: a very short introduction

Compositing is the process of physically or digitally combining two or more images into one. Here's a brief helicopter overview of one of the most fundamental techniques used in post-production.

Digital compositing techniques:

Compositing is a common visual effects technique used in film, animation, and photography. When compositing video, images from separate sources are added to live-action video footage. After combining the different footage sources the whole image will be color corrected to create one cohesive result. For example, landscapes are often computer-generated and added during post-production using software such as Houdini or Adobe After Effects.

Blue or Green screen. A simple way to prepare a live shot for post-production compositing is by using blue or green screens. The compositor takes the footage shot in front of a green or blue screen and uses a process called chroma keying to remove all of the blue or green from the scene to be transparent. Now the background can be replaced in post-production with anything the filmmaker wants.

Multiple exposures. A technique that combines different exposures or images that are layered on top of each other. The image overlaid is less than full opacity so a bit of both image can be seen producing an almost ghost-like image. Nowadays filmmakers often rely on CGI to do the same effect.

CGI. Thanks to technological improvements, computer-generated imagery has become the norm for many productions from period dramas to blockbusters. While often associated with the generation of 3D models of people, monsters, buildings, cars, explosions, and many other things, CGI can also be used to maintain consistent scenery, i.e. background environments full of buildings, people, and vehicles. Rather than being static scenes, these can then provide convincing animated backdrops for compositing

Rotoscoping. A technique used in animation to trace over live-action motion picture footage frame by frame. Filmmakers can create a matte used to extract an object from a scene to use on a different background.

Matting. As mentioned above, this is a process of extracting foreground (for example actors) and background (landscape) objects from the image. In essence, the compositor can choose which areas of the image should be visible and which should be transparent to blend these different sources of footage together.

Tags: Post & VFX

Sat, 12 Nov 2022 16:51:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.redsharknews.com/basic-techniques-in-compositing
Killexams : Mindfulness techniques could help Excellerate health of environment

Techniques to Excellerate mental health and well-being, such as mindfulness and meditation, may also encourage people to look after the environment, researchers have found.

The study, published in The Lancet Planetary Health and from researchers at the Universities of York, reading and Surrey, examined the link between ego and how people look after their surroundings.

After collating studies across a large range of research fields, the researchers were able to test the expectation that self-identity and the health of the environment are linked in a dynamic cycle.

They found that people who are highly individualistic—meaning they have a strong sense of ego—see themselves as more isolated from the . This means they might carry out fewer behaviors to Excellerate the environment, such as recycling or reducing their carbon footprint.


This behavior at larger scales leads to plants and wildlife disappearing from towns and cities, further reducing people's connection to nature.

The study showed, however, that activities traditionally associated with improving and well-being, such as walking and bird watching, improved connectedness to the environment, encouraging people to look after it.

The increased connection to an individual's surroundings made people less individualistic and ego-driven, and more likely to choose behaviors such as planting trees, picking up litter and traveling sustainably.

International cooperation

Professor Bob Doherty, from the University of York's School for Business and Society, said, "At a time when world leaders are meeting for COP27, our research shows the crucial need for international cooperation between governments, business and to develop new pro-environmental interventions to promote new behavior and action.

"This kind of cross-collaboration should see more investment in urban green initiatives, for example, and new approaches to food and the environment within the school system, to harness the powers of young people to create long-term sustainable change."

Government level

As people enjoy their surroundings more due to the enhanced environment, the cycle is repeated, creating what is known as a "virtuous circle" that links self-identity and the , the researchers say.

On the other hand, people who are more individualistic develop a "dog-eat-dog" attitude and can get stuck in a "vicious circle" of decline, they say.

The phenomenon can be observed at government-wide level, the researchers found, citing U.S. policies to cut environmental protection laws leading to greater isolation and increased .

'America first'

Pointing to ex-President Donald Trump's "America First" policy, the researchers found that changes to self-identity in national leaders might explain the damaging removal of environmental protection and reduced international cooperation, which is essential to solve problems such as climate change.

Professor Tom Oliver, Research Dean for Environment at the University of Reading, said, "Expanding our sense of self-identity to include others and the natural world creates an attitude of care and responsibility.

"The actions that follow lead to nature improvement, for example restoring plants and wildlife in our towns and cities, which then gives us further opportunity to engage and connect with nature."

More information: Tom H Oliver et al, A safe and just operating space for human identity: a systems perspective, The Lancet Planetary Health (2022). DOI: 10.1016/S2542-5196(22)00217-0

Citation: Mindfulness techniques could help Excellerate health of environment (2022, November 11) retrieved 9 December 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-11-mindfulness-techniques-health-environment.html

This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Fri, 11 Nov 2022 02:10:00 -0600 en text/html https://phys.org/news/2022-11-mindfulness-techniques-health-environment.html
Killexams : What is social engineering? Definition, types, attack techniques

Check out all the on-demand sessions from the Intelligent Security Summit here.

Social engineering is the very common practice of exploiting a human element to initiate and/or execute a cyberattack. 

Human weakness and ignorance present such easy targets that fully 82% of the attacks in Verizon’s 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report were perpetrated, at least in part, via some form of social engineering.

In this article, we look at the forms of social engineering that are frequently used and best practices for limiting its effectiveness within the enterprise.

What is social engineering?

A dictionary definition of social engineering (in the context of cybersecurity) is “the use of deception to manipulate individuals into divulging confidential or personal information that may be used for fraudulent purposes.” 


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At the most basic, this includes the mass-market spamming of individual email accounts with a phishing attempt such as an offer for a free gift certificate from a well-known retailer. Consumers who click a link to a malicious website or open an infected file attachment and enter personal information may open themselves up to criminal exploitation.

For higher-value, enterprise targets, the technique can become quite a bit more elaborate — or remain stunningly simple.

Roger Grimes, data-driven defense evangelist at security awareness training vendor KnowBe4, calls it for what it is: a con, a scam. “It’s someone pretending to be a brand, company or person you would … trust more than if you know the message was being sent by a complete stranger trying to trick you into doing something that will impact you or your organization’s own interests,” he explained. “The desired actions are often to launch a malicious program, provide logon passwords, or to provide confidential content (e.g., social security number, banking information, etc.).” 

The criminal uses psychological manipulation to trick the user into performing actions or divulging confidential information. Seven means of persuasive appeal, as outlined by Robert Cialini in Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, are commonly cited in explaining why people are vulnerable to their application in social engineering:

  • Reciprocity
  • Scarcity
  • Authority
  • Liking
  • Commitment
  • Consensus
  • Unity

Many social engineering attempts come via email, but that is not the only channel. Social engineering is also accomplished via SMS messages, websites, social media, phone calls or even in person. 

As Manos Gavriil, head of content at hacking training firm Hack The Box, points out, “Social engineering is considered the number one threat in cybersecurity, as it exploits individual human error, which makes it very hard to stop, and even the simplest forms of attack can have a devastating impact.”

Types of social engineering techniques and methods

Social engineering is accomplished in a variety of ways:  

  • Pretexting: This involves the false presentation of identity or context to make a target believe they should share sensitive data or take a compromising action, and it is an element in most social engineering.
  • Baiting: The adversary usually offers a fake promise of something to deceive the victim, steal sensitive information or infect the organization with malware.
  • Phishing: The attacker sends out large volumes of emails, without a specific target in mind, in the hope that a malicious link or attachment will be clicked to provide the attacker access to sensitive information. 
  • Spear phishing: Masquerading as a known or trusted sender to a specific victim, the attacker sends a targeted, and usually personally crafted, phishing message. 
  • Whale phishing: This is spear phishing for a high-value target, such as a senior executive or key financial staffer. It is likely predicated on detailed information that the attacker has first gathered about the target and organization in order to present a credible pretext involving access to sensitive information or the initiation of a financial action.
  • Vishing or smishing: This is a phishing attempt made via a voice call or SMS text, as opposed to an email message.
  • Business email compromise (BEC): The cybercriminal compromises a business email account and impersonates the owner to deceive someone in the business circle into sending money or sensitive data to the attacker’s account.
  • Pharming: Code is placed on a computer or server to divert or trick the user into visiting a harmful website.  
  • Tailgating or piggybacking: A malicious actor gains physical access to an organization’s secured facility by closely following an employee or other authorized entrant who has used a credential to pass through security.
  • Dumpster diving: As it sounds, this is another attack at a physical location, whereby the criminal sifts through an organization’s trash to find information that they can use to initiate an attack.

These types of attack are often combined or tweaked to incorporate new wrinkles:

  • Cybercriminals often pretend they are from a trusted organization, such as the target’s energy supplier, bank or IT department. They use logos from these institutions and email addresses that are similar to official ones. Once they gain trust, they request sensitive information such as logins or account details to penetrate networks or steal funds. 
  • A common approach is a false scenario with a warning that if an action isn’t taken very soon there will be some unwanted negative consequence, such as having an account permanently locked, a fine or a visit from law enforcement. The usual goal is to get the person to click on a rogue URL link that takes the victim to a fake login page where they enter their login credentials for a legitimate service.
  • Another variant is the BazarCall campaign. It begins with a phishing email. But instead of duping the user into clicking on a malicious link or attachment, the email prompts the user to call a phone number to cancel a subscription. Urgency is injected with the threat that they are about to be automatically charged. Fake call centers then direct users to a website to obtain a cancellation form that installs BazarCall malware.
  • For spear-phishing, the attacker may glean valuable data from LinkedIn, Facebook and other platforms in order to appear more genuine. If the target is out of the country, for example, and is known to use an Amex card, a call or email may claim to be from American Express, seeking to verify identity to approve transactions in the country in which the user is traveling. The person hands over account information, credit card numbers, pins and security codes — and the attacker goes on an online buying spree.
  • Because whaling focuses on high-value targets, sophisticated techniques are increasingly used. If a merger is ongoing or a big government grant is about to go through, attackers may pose as someone involved in the deal and inject enough urgency to get money diverted to the account of a criminal group. Deepfake technology may be used to make a financial employee believe that their boss or another authority figure is requesting the action. 
  • LinkedIn requests from bad actors are growing in prevalence. Con artists charm unsuspecting jobseekers into opening malicious PDFs, videos, QR codes and voicemail messages. 
  • Push notification spamming is when a threat actor continuously bombards a user for approval via a multi-factor authentication (MFA) app. A user can panic or get annoyed by the number of notifications coming their way and provide approval to the threat actor to enter the network.  
  • Cashing in on a current crisis, a social engineering attack plays on current headlines or people’s fears around personal finances. Whether it is text messages offering fake energy bills and tax rebates or an increase in online banking scams, people become more vulnerable to exploitation from opportunistic bad actors as budgets tighten.  

However, social engineering doesn’t have to be sophisticated to be successful. Physical social engineering usually involves attackers posing as trusted employees, delivery and support personnel, or government officials such as firefighters or police. Another effective ploy is to leave a USB stick somewhere labeled “bitcoin wallet” or even, in a company parking lot or building toward the end of the year, “annual raises.”

As Igor Volovich, vice president of compliance for Qmulos, shares, “Recently, a pair of social media figures set out to prove that they could get into concerts by simply carrying a ladder and ‘acting official.’ They succeeded multiple times.”

10 top best practices to detect and prevent social engineering attacks in 2022

Follow these best practices to thwart social engineering attempts within an organization:

1. Security awareness training may be the most fundamental practice for preventing damage from social engineering. 

  • Training should be multifaceted. Engaging but short videos, user alerts about potentially dangerous online activity, and random phishing simulation emails all play their part. 
  • Training must be done at regular intervals and must educate users on what to look for and how to spot social engineering.
  • One-size-fits-all training should be avoided. According to Gartner, one-size-fits-all training misses the mark. Content needs to be highly varied to reach all types of people. It should be of different lengths — from 20 minutes to one- to two-minute microlearning lessons. It should be interactive and perhaps even consist of episode-based shows. Various styles should be deployed, ranging from formal and corporate to edgy and humorous. Customization of content should address distinct types of users, such as those in IT, finance or other roles and for those with differing levels of knowledge.
  • Gamification can be used in a variety of ways. Training can include games where the user spots different threat indicators or solves social engineering mysteries. Games can also be introduced to play one department’s security scores against another’s with rewards offered at the end of a training period.

2. Employees should be tested regularly for their response to threats — both online and in person.

  • Before beginning security awareness training, baseline testing can determine the percentage of users who fall victim to simulated attacks. Testing again after training gauges how successful the educational campaign has been. As Forrester Research notes, metrics such as completion rates and quiz performance don’t represent real-world behavior.
  • To get a fair measure of user awareness, simulations or campaigns should not be announced in advance. Vary timing and style. If fake phishing emails go out every Monday morning at 10 and always look similar, the employee grapevine will go into action. Workers will warn each other. Some will stand up in the cubicle and announce a phishing campaign email to the whole room. Be unpredictable on timing. Styles, too, should be changed up. One week try using a corporate logo from a bank; the next week make it an alert from IT about a security threat. Akin to using “secret shoppers,” deploying realistic simulations of tailgaters and unauthorized lurkers or positioning tempting USBs at a facility can test in-person awareness. In working with a security awareness provider, Forrester analyst Jinan Budge recommends that organizations “choose vendors that can help measure your employees’ human risk score.” Budge notes, “Once you know the risk profile of an individual or department, you can adjust your training and gain valuable insights about where to Excellerate your security program.” 

3. Foster a pervasive culture of awareness.

According to Grimes, “If you create the right culture, you end up with a human firewall that guards the organization against attack.” Well-executed training and testing can help to create a culture of healthy skepticism, where everyone is taught to recognize a social engineering attack.

4. It should be easy to report attempts and breaches.

Systems should make it easy for personnel to report potential phishing emails and other scams to the help desk, IT or security. Such systems should also make life easy for IT by categorizing and summarizing reports. A phishing alert button can be placed directly into the company email program.

5. Multifactor authentication (MFA) is important.

Social engineering is often intended to trick users into compromising their enterprise email and system access credentials. Requiring multiple identity verification credentials is one means of keeping such first-stage attacks from going further. With MFA, users might receive a text message on their phone, enter a code in an authenticator app, or otherwise verify their identity via multiple means.

6. Keep a tight handle on administrative and privileged access accounts.

Once a malicious actor gains access to a network, the next step is often to seek an administrative or privileged access account to compromise, because that provides entry to other accounts and significantly more sensitive information. Therefore it is especially important that such accounts are given only on an “as needs” basis and are watched more carefully for abuse.

7. Deploy user and entity behavior analytics (UEBA) for authentication.

Along with MFA, additional authentication technology should be used to stop initial credential breaches from escalating to larger network intrusions. UEBA can recognize anomalous locations, login times and the like. If a new device is used to access an account, alerts should be triggered, and additional verification steps initiated.  

8. Secure email gateways are another important tool.

Although not nearly perfect, secure email gateways cut down on the number of phishing attempts and malicious attachments that reach users.

9. Keep antimalware releases, software patches and upgrades current.

Keeping current on releases, patches and upgrades cuts down on both the malicious social engineering attempts that reach users and the damage that occurs when users fall for a deception or otherwise make an erroneous click.

10. Finally, the only way to 100% ensure freedom from cyberattack is to remove all users from the web, stop using email, and never communicate with the outside world.

Short of that extreme, security personnel can become so paranoid that they institute a burdensome tangle of safeguards that slow down every process in the organization. A good example is the inefficient TSA checkpoints at every airport. The process has negatively impacted public perception about air travel. Similarly, in cybersecurity a balance between security and productivity must be maintained.

VentureBeat's mission is to be a digital town square for technical decision-makers to gain knowledge about transformative enterprise technology and transact. Discover our Briefings.

Mon, 07 Nov 2022 01:22:00 -0600 Drew Robb en-US text/html https://venturebeat.com/security/what-is-social-engineering-definition-types-attack-techniques/
Killexams : Photonic Advances Enhance Imaging Techniques

WASHINGTON--()--The Optica Foundation today issued details on the healthcare work being funded by its 20th Anniversary Challenge. This newly funded research will address the potential of Differential Interference Contrast (DIC) microscopy, accessibility and portability of Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), and applicability of Synthetic Wavelength Holography (SWH), a method to image through light-scattering materials like human skin.

“The field of imaging has benefited greatly from advances in photonics,” said Majid Ebrahim-Zadeh, ICFO - Institut de Ciencies Fotoniques, Spain, and member of the 20th Anniversary Challenge Selection Committee. “The research being conducted by the challenge recipients strives to solve for today’s pain points in imaging, including efficiency and accessibility. We expect these efforts to lead to continued investigation and advancement in this critical field.”

Healthcare initiatives from the 20th Anniversary Challenge include the following:

Transparent Microparticle and Cancer Cell Imaging

  • Guangwei Hu, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
    Single-shot, Isotropic and Miniaturized Differential Interference Contrast (SIM-DIC) Microscopy based on computational flat-optics
    Research Executive Summary Optical microscopy offers a method of imaging tiny samples, even transparent ones, to track their movements in real-time in 3-D. To achieve that goal today, researchers deploy a bulky system, such as differential interference contrast microscopy, measuring elements in one dimension at a time due to orientation sensitivity. However, Guangwei Hu, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, is working to change the approach.

    To address shortcomings in current optical microscopy approaches, Hu’s research proposes using flat optical elements or metasurfaces to create smaller, more efficient, and more powerful systems. By leveraging silicon nanostructures as a foundation, the planned system will be set to perform multiple functionalities at one time, including the focusing phase, polarization multiplexing, and isotropic edge detection—all in 3-D— via a portable device that can potentially link up with standard consumer electronics.

    “I’m trying to revolutionize existing microscopic techniques with new and advanced optical elements based on metasurfaces,” explains Hu. “It’s a new crossover, really merging microscopic imaging systems with metasurfaces.”

    Hu has already conducted initial work on the fundamental limits and principals behind his approach and has developed designs to fabricate for testing. He plans to begin with a demonstration of the microscopy system, and within six months, Hu expects to operate the system on biological samples of cancer cells.

    “The ultimate goal is that healthcare researchers and practitioners could have a module that they can even place on their mobile phone to image,” said Hu. “At the end of the day, the proposed single-shot, isotropic and miniaturized DIC system is portable and simple to operate, because it’s essentially just a very detailed lens.”

Portable OCT Platforms for Disease Detection

  • Xingchen Ji, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
    Developing low-cost, portable, integrated OCT systems using low-loss silicon nitride platform
    Research Executive Summary
    Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) is a non-invasive imaging modality that provides high-resolution images of tissue for more than 30 million scans each year. However, due to the complexity of system elements, prohibitive costs for purchase and maintenance, and its generous size, the product’s accessibility is limited. But new efforts from Xingchen Ji, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China, promise to develop an alternative OCT system that is both portable and low cost.

    “My proposal is about developing a portable, low-loss OCT system prototype, based on silicon photonics, and more specifically, silicon nitride,” shared Ji. “This way, all of the elements of a traditional OCT system could be covered by a single platform, a whole system rather than single parts. If this idea succeeds, we will be able to reduce both the size and cost of OCT systems by orders of magnitude.”

    Ji explained that his first step is to optimize the fabrication process, and then design the light source, interferometer and spectrometer components of the system. In three months, he hopes that they will demonstrate the low-loss platform that supports the system’s design, and by six months, they will be able to acquire OCT images. At the end of a year, Ji aspires to have a working prototype.

    “What we are trying to do here is make OCT widely accessible. Once we have a miniaturized system, we can reduce costs to $1,000 or below per device. I can even imagine a day when you would have one at home, and you could transfer the images to the cloud so the doctor could review them, without having to go to the hospital, office, or clinic,” Ji said.

Precise Imaging through Living Tissue with Standard Camera Technology

  • Florian Willomitzer, University of Arizona, USA
    Noninvasive high-resolution imaging through living tissue with single-shot synthetic wavelength holography
    Research Executive Summary
    Over the last decades, the field of medical imaging has spawned several seminal inventions, including Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT), Computed Tomography (CT), ultrasound, and Magnet Resonance Imaging (MRI). exact years have seen a growing interest in medical imaging techniques which enable a look inside the human body with high precision but are non-invasive and can be facilitated in a small form factor, i.e., possibly even operated in a hand-guided fashion. Now, work from Florian Willomitzer at the University of Arizona, USA, seeks to demonstrate an important step towards this new breed of medical imaging devices: single-shot Synthetic Wavelength Holography (SWH).

    “Our previously demonstrated method of Synthetic Wavelength Holography shows great potential for a multitude of medical imaging applications, but currently still requires a temporal sequence of images to ‘see’ through scattering media like tissue. If something moves during the acquisition of this temporal image sequence, the measurement fails. This makes the current method unfeasible for real-world medical applications, as living tissue is in constant movement,” said Willomitzer. “This new work addresses this problem by introducing an approach that enables precise SWH measurements with only one single camera image. The vision is to create an efficient and cost-effective imaging system which uses standard, off-the-shelf camera technology – theoretically even mobile phone cameras.”

    Willomitzer will start by building on exact research that demonstrated the success of multi-shot SWH, refining the approach to function in a single-shot environment. In six months, he intends to have developed baseline criteria for his hypothesized one-shot approach, and then will evaluate its potential for real-world medical imaging applications, i.e., the imaging of small structures, such as capillaries, lesions, tumors, etc., through scattering media, such as tissue and bone.

    “The proposed technique could have profound effects on future industries that go far beyond potential applications in medical imaging. Possible examples include applications in autonomous vehicles, virtual reality, industrial inspection, and many more,” Willomitzer concluded.

All three imaging research efforts are the result of grants awarded through the Optica Foundation’s 20th Anniversary Challenge. This challenge was designed to engage early-career professionals in out-of-the-box thinking and provide seed money to investigate hypotheses in the areas of environment, health and information. Each of the recipients received $100,000 USD to explore their ideas and take steps toward addressing critical global issues. Recipients have begun work on these projects and expect to report initial results by the second quarter of 2023. For more information and to follow their journeys, visit optica.org/foundationchallenge.

About Optica

Optica (formerly OSA), Advancing Optics and Photonics Worldwide, is the society dedicated to promoting the generation, application, archiving and dissemination of knowledge in the field. Founded in 1916, it is the leading organization for scientists, engineers, business professionals, students and others interested in the science of light. Optica’s renowned publications, meetings, online resources and in-person activities fuel discoveries, shape real-life applications and accelerate scientific, technical and educational achievement. Discover more at: Optica.org

About Optica Foundation

Established in 2002, the Optica Foundation carries out charitable activities in support of the society’s student and early career communities. We cultivate the next generation of leaders and innovators as they navigate advanced degree programs and become active members of research, engineering and business worldwide. The foundation also works to secure the endowments for Optica’s awards and honors programs. The foundation is registered as a 501(c)(3) non-profit. For more information, visit optica.org/foundation.

Fri, 02 Dec 2022 02:42:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20221129005841/en/
Killexams : SocGholish finds success through novel email techniques

Researchers at Proofpoint revealed more technical details about SocGholish, the malware variant they identified earlier this month, highlighting its noteworthy tactics that differ from traditional phishing campaigns.

According to a Proofpoint blog post Tuesday, SocGholish deviates from the norm by forgoing all the classic staples of modern phishing, such as instilling a sense of urgency, promises of rewards, and misdirection. Instead, researchers found that SocGholish is leveraged in email campaigns with injections on sites, mainly targeting organizations with extensive marketing campaigns or strong Search Engine Optimization.

“[SocGholish] really is sophisticated. I do not like to use the word ‘sophisticated’ when it comes to threats in general, but this actor [along with] its development lifecycle and various techniques really are head and shoulders above other actors,” Andrew Northern, senior threat researcher at Proofpoint, said during a virtual event on Tuesday.

Drew Schmitt, managing security consultant and lead analyst at GuidePoint Security, expanded on that point, telling SC Media in an email that SocGholish hasn’t been observed using this attack vector before, and their email-based attacks combined with obtain style infections “is unique in the sense that it explicitly avoids having characteristics that the average user would be able to detect and identify.”

Proofpoint first tweeted about SocGholish attacks on November 2, disclosing that the malware has infected over 250 U.S. news sites. The company said it observed intermittent injections in a media company that serves content through Javascript to its partners. The threat actor, tracked by Proofpoint as TA569, modified the codebase of the benign Javascript and used the media company to deploy SocGholish, which could result in a dangerous supply chain attack.

Proofpoint researchers told SC Media that the threat actor is not directly targeting the media industry but using these companies as their delivery mechanisms. The intended victims are consumers who visit those sites.

“The actors are opportunistic and will inject the scripts wherever they can: into landing pages, into third-party styling resources, trackers, and scripts,” said Sherrod DeGrippo, VP of threat research at detection at Proofpoint. “They rely on the compromised entity being a legitimate organization and natural email traffic, such as newsletters, marketing efforts, and bulletins, to drive traffic to those sites. In the case of online news outlets, articles are often optimized for search engines, so ad hoc searching would also lead potential victims to the compromised sites.”

Matthew Fulmer, manager of cyber intelligence engineering at Deep Instinct, added that the SocGholish is notable because it is not just an attack to gain credentials but to gain persistence and lateral movement in order to drop additional malware payloads, which could include ransomware or other threats.

Tuesday’s virtual session also highlighted how the group has applied injection strobing, a technique that adds, removes, and re-adds injections to evade detection and prevent analysis.

Northern said that one potential motivation for TA569 to manipulate injected hosts is to confuse incident responders and prevent them from analyzing the malware. He said that it could also be a result of attackers meeting their quota for delivering other payloads.

“There are a lot of reasons why they may be serving these injections, but the key takeaway here is that you don’t be quick to say that this is a false positive,” Northern said. “If you are a responder and you say this is a false positive because you cannot find it, you are going to discount the follow-on steps of checking that host to see if there are any lateral movements.”

To defend against the threat actors,  Northern suggested organizations have their WMI, subscription, consumer, and triggers logging turned on and centralize those logs to monitor post-exploitation activity.

Schmitt warned that the detection of SocGholish malware is a great reminder of the threat under supply chain attacks.

“Although not observed as often as other attack mechanisms, the controlled use of a supply chain compromise, as observed by SocGholish recently, may be an indication of an even more concentrated focus on leveraging supply chain attacks overall,” Schmitt said.

Tue, 22 Nov 2022 19:39:00 -0600 en text/html https://www.scmagazine.com/analysis/threat-intelligence/socgholish-finds-success-through-novel-email-techniques


The Trail Blazers are dedicated to positively impacting the lives of individuals from communities that have been historically underserved or marginalized with a focus on where youth live, learn, and play.


The Trail Blazers are dedicated to positively impacting the lives of individuals who have been historically underserved based on race, gender, ability, immigration status, LGBTQ+ identity, and rural residence. The Foundation gives grants to nonprofits, schools and youth and is funded through meaningful corporate partnerships, revenue from Trail Blazers license plate sales and the 5050 raffle, in-game and online auctions, as well as other fundraising efforts.





Thu, 13 Aug 2020 11:41:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.nba.com/blazers/community/foundation
Killexams : Ants' farming practices and efficient navigation techniques could inspire solutions for human problems

King Solomon may have gained some of his famed wisdom from an unlikely source—ants.

According to a Jewish legend, Solomon conversed with a clever ant queen that confronted his pride, making quite an impression on the Israelite king. In the biblical book of Proverbs (6:6-8), Solomon shares this advice with his son: "Look to the ant, thou sluggard, consider her ways and be wise. Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler, provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest."

While I can't claim any familial connection to King Solomon, despite sharing his name, I've long admired the wisdom of and have spent over 20 years studying their ecology, evolution and behaviors. While the notion that ants may offer lessons for humans has certainly been around for a while, there may be new wisdom to gain from what scientists have learned about their biology.

Lessons from ant agriculture

As a researcher, I'm especially intrigued by fungus-growing ants, a group of 248 species that cultivate fungi as their main source of food. They include 79 species of leafcutter ants, which grow their fungal gardens with freshly cut leaves they carry into their enormous underground nests. I've excavated hundreds of leafcutter ant nests from Texas to Argentina as part of the scientific effort to understand how these ants coevolved with their fungal crops.

Much like human farmers, each species of fungus-growing ant is very particular about the type of crops they cultivate. Most varieties descend from a type of fungus that the ancestors of fungus-growing ants began growing some 55 million to 65 million years ago. Some of these fungi became domesticated and are now unable to survive on their own without their insect farmers, much like some human crops such as maize.

Ant farmers face many of the same challenges human farmers do, including the threat of pests. A parasite called Escovopsis can devastate ant gardens, causing the ants to starve. Likewise in human agriculture, pest outbreaks have contributed to disasters like the Irish Potato Famine, the 1970 corn blight and the current threat to bananas.

Since the 1950s, human agriculture has become industrialized and relies on monoculture, or growing large amounts of the same variety of crop in a single place. Yet monoculture makes crops more vulnerable to pests because it is easier to destroy an entire field of genetically identical plants than a more diverse one.

Ants have evolved highly complex social organizations.

Industrial agriculture has looked to as a partial solution, turning agricultural pest management into a billion-dollar industry. The trouble with this approach is that pests can evolve new ways to get around pesticides faster than researchers can develop more effective chemicals. It's an arms race—and the pests have the upper hand.

Ants also grow their crops in monoculture and at a similar scale—after all, a leafcutter ant nest can be home to 5 million ants, all of which feed on the fungi in their underground gardens. They, too, use a pesticide to control Escovopsis and other pests.

Yet, their approach to differs from humans' in one important way. Ant pesticides are produced by bacteria they allow to grow in their nests, and in some cases even on their bodies. Keeping bacteria as a living culture allows the microbes to adapt in real time to evolutionary changes in the pests. In the between pests and farmers, farming ants have discovered that live bacteria can serve as pharmaceutical factories that can keep up with ever-changing pests.

Whereas exact developments in agricultural management have focused on genetically engineering crop plants to produce their own pesticides, the lesson from 55 million years of ant agriculture is to leverage living microorganisms to make useful products. Researchers are currently experimenting with applying live bacteria to crop plants to determine if they are effective at producing pesticides that can evolve in real time along with pests.

Improving transportation

Ants can also offer practical lessons in the realm of transportation.

Ants are notoriously good at quickly locating food, whether it's a dead insect on a forest floor or some crumbs in your kitchen. They do this by leaving a trail of pheromones—chemicals with a distinctive smell ants use to guide their nest mates to food. The shortest route to a destination will accumulate the most pheromone because more ants will have traveled back and forth along it in a given amount of time.

In the 1990s, computer scientists developed a class of algorithms modeled after ant behavior that are very effective at finding the shortest path between two or more locations. Like with real ants, the shortest route to a destination will accumulate the most virtual pheromone because more virtual ants will have traveled along it in a given amount of time. Engineers have used this simple but effective approach to design telecommunication networks and map delivery routes.

Ants started farming tens of millions of years before humans.

Not only are ants good at finding the shortest route from their nests to a source of food, thousands of ants are capable of traveling along these routes without causing traffic jams. I recently began collaborating with physicist Oscar Andrey Herrera-Sancho to study how leafcutter ants maintain such a steady flow along their foraging paths without the slowdowns typical of crowded human sidewalks and highways.

We are using cameras to track how each individual ant responds to artificial obstacles placed on their foraging trails. Our hope is that by getting a better understanding of the rules ants use to respond to both obstacles and the movement of other ants, we can develop algorithms that can eventually help program self-driving cars that never get stuck in traffic.

Look to the ant

To be fair, there are plenty of ways ants are far from perfect role models. After all, some ant species are known for indiscriminate killing, and others for enslaving babies.

But the fact is that ants remind us of ourselves—or the way we might like to imagine ourselves—in many ways. They live in complex societies with division of labor. They cooperate to raise their young. And they accomplish remarkable engineering feats—like building structures with air funnels that can house millions—all without blueprints or a leader. Did I mention their societies are run entirely by females?

There is still a lot to learn about ants. For example, researchers still don't fully understand how an ant larva develops into either a queen—a female with wings that can live for 20 years and lay millions of eggs—or a worker—a wingless, often sterile female that lives for less than a year and performs all the other jobs in the colony. What's more, scientists are constantly discovering new species—167 new ant species were described in 2021 alone, bringing the total to more than 15,980.

By considering ants and their many fascinating ways, there's plenty of wisdom to be gained.

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.The Conversation

Citation: Ants' farming practices and efficient navigation techniques could inspire solutions for human problems (2022, November 15) retrieved 9 December 2022 from https://phys.org/news/2022-11-ants-farming-efficient-techniques-solutions.html

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Tue, 15 Nov 2022 04:57:00 -0600 en text/html https://phys.org/news/2022-11-ants-farming-efficient-techniques-solutions.html
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