BBC News - The 'cyber-attack' threat to London's Olympic ceremony

Peter Tomlinson pwt at
Mon Jul 8 11:59:36 BST 2013

That reminded me of a 28th June article in the Newsletter from Pinsent 
Masons (Out-Law News):

Personally this is relevant in the context of smart media ticketing for 
public transport, where there is talk of moving to an 'always on-line' 
method instead of holding details in the card (or smartphone) and having 
a complex ticket machine on the vehicle, at the station, etc. The card 
will then just hold an ID token (so it could be a bank card).


On 08/07/2013 10:52, Ian Batten wrote:
> How seriously can we take all this sort of stuff?  It does seem 
> remarkably convenient that, in the light of the PRISM (etc) 
> revelations, GCHQ are suddenly purporting to open their files 
> sufficiently to show us how it's a miracle that we aren't all 
> strangled in our beds by cyber-criminals.  If CIN utility systems are 
> connected to the Internet, then the solution is not massive security 
> measures at a whole-country level, the solution is removing CIN from 
> the Internet and properly policing the airgap.  Yes, that's not a 100% 
> fix, as the broken bearings on some Iranian centrifuges will attest, 
> and actually enforcing an airgap on geographically diverse equipment 
> is a lot harder than it might at first sight appear.  And the level of 
> evidence --- which appears, from the cited story, to be at the "some 
> people who had neither the capability nor the expertise nor the 
> knowledge said they thought it might be a good idea to..." --- doesn't 
> convince me that these risks are sufficient to support the solutions 
> being proposed.
> So far, the only case of a serious cyber-attack on CIN we know of is 
> the Iranian centrifuge case, in which (so far as we can tell) massive 
> state-actor resources were deployed against a broadly unprepared 
> target in order to stop the functioning of one precise piece of 
> equipment.  Everything else is supposition and rumour.   Is our CIN 
> really at risk from cyber-terrorism?  Where's the evidence?
> ian

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