With the massive battle of fighting terrorism and tracking suspects, the United States government has learnt that without the aid of adequate analysis as well as algorithms, mass surveillance is not possible.
President Obama understood this information last year as he signed the new USA Freedom Act. This new act will end the bulk collection of known domestic cellphone data by the United States Intelligence Agencies, or that is what the bill states. But we all know that the NSA does not follow any guidelines or procedures.
To get to the point, we can see from their website NSA.Gov, that they have been collecting a vast quantity of data from everyone’s smartphone and other smart-related devices that connect to the Internet.
Does the government have enough capabilities in order to better predict – and even identify – suspects and terrorists. as well as cyber criminals before they act?
William E. Binney, an Ex-NSA technical director that has served over 30 years at the US National Security Agency, proclaimed last year in front of the Parliamentary Joint Committee that forcing analysts to examine several billions of records, actually crushes their ability to identify the real threats.
As we draw further into our technical century, the Pentagon wants to obtain a more efficient way to not only identify any of the malicious hackers, but to also search for practical algorithms that could predict where the hackers may attack next.
Another large government agency, the Defense Advanced Projects Agency (DARPA), is also offering funding for those in the security research fields that may be able to assist the agency into developing advanced algorithms, this time, to identify hackers. This new game-changing attack is known as the Enhanced Attribution Program.
While organizations, as well as countries, provide their best in order to properly identify any cyber campaigns infiltrating their critical infrastructure; tracking down any of the culprits has always baffled their obstacles. Now, thanks to Tor, Virtual Private Networks (VPN’s), as well as other programs used to protect online identity, hiding the source of the attack has become much easier.
With that said, the United States military are combining forces with DARPA, aiming to shine light on the upmost sophisticated hackers, as well as criminal groups. This can be accomplished by monitoring the hacker’s exact behavior as well as any physical biometrics.
Hence, the main goal for the Enhanced Attribution Program is to provide government spying agencies with the ability to continuously spy, while creating algorithms for the developing of predictive behavioral profile programs.
DARPA is also aiming to have the program include algorithms to analyze and provide predictive behavioral profiles from within the outlined context of cyber campaigns. This will also coincide with other technologies in order to validate and improve the knowledge base, with the aid of public and commercial sources of information.
The program is broken down into 3 divided tracks:
- Behavior and Activity Tracking and Summarization
- Fusion and Predictive Analysis
- Validation and Enrichment
The work of the Enhanced Attribution Program will consist of an 18 month open program where you can submit your own work in this area.
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