Dark Cyber for December 12, 2017, Now Available

December 12, 2017

The HonkinNews Dark Cyber program for December 12, 2017, presents a snapshot of a next-generation investigation analysis system, data about illegal drugs on the Dark Web, and news about a secure chat system which runs within Tor. Most analysts and investigators have access to a range of software and hardware devices designed to make sense of data from a range of computing devices. However, the newer systems offer visual analyses which often surprise with their speed, power, and ability to deliver “at a glance” insights. This week’s Dark Cyber examines Brainspace, now a unit of Cyxtera. Brainspace’s graphics are among the most striking in the intelligence analysis market. The role that Cyxtera plays is perhaps more important. The company is a roll up of existing businesses and focused on cloud delivery of advanced software and services. Dark Cyber also provides facts from a recent European Union report about illegal substances on the Dark Web. What’s interesting about the report is that the data it presents seems to understate the magnitude of the volume of drug sales via the Dark Web. You can download the report without charge from the url included in this week’s program. The final story addresses what is a growing challenge for law enforcement and intelligence authorities: Secure chat within Tor. The Dark Cyber team reports that Anonymous Portugal has made this alleged breakthrough. (The second edition of the Dark Web Notebook will include a new chapter about chat and related services plus ways to compromise these communications.) You can view the program at this link https://youtu.be/E2jNuJXblOI.

Kenny Toth, December 12, 2017

HonkinNews Dark Cyber for December 5, 2017, Now Available

December 5, 2017

The December 5, 2017, Dark Cyber program includes three stories and one feature. If you were wondering if the Dark Web offered high-value content, you will find our report about the New York Times useful. The “nation’s newspaper” or the “Gray Lady” to some has a Dark Web site. Dark Cyber asks two questions about this surprising online move. Uber is a popular, controversial, and litigation magnet. For those who depend on Uber, the fact that valid Uber accounts are available for purchase on the Dark Web may be troubling. Dark Cyber adds to the concern by pointing to Surface Web sites which also sell stolen Uber accounts. Free rides on someone else’s account my sound like a good idea. The reality is that you may be violating one or more laws if your dabble in stolen Uber accounts. The feature this week answers in part the question, “Exactly what type of reports does a high-end intelligence analysis system provide to an authorized user?” Dark Cyber uses reports generated by Tovek, an intelligence software and services firm based in Prague, for the answer. As you review the outputs, please, keep in mind that Dark Cyber has intentionally blurred the images for security. Pay particular attention to the mapping of a person of interest’s travel data. The final story for December 5, 2017, is a quick look at what a consumer newspaper revealed about Google Chrome browser’s “incognito” mode. If you thought your online behaviors were hidden from monitoring, you may want to think about what Google Chrome Incognito does not do for its users. You can view the program at this link https://youtu.be/LwGDBczVj10

Kenny Toth, December 5, 2017

Business Intelligence: A List of 238 Firms

November 30, 2017

Need a list of “fermium” business intelligence tools. That’s no typo. That is the word on page 2 of Top Business intelligence Solutions. Looking past the misspelling, the write up from Predictive Analytics Today presents a listing in no particular order of more than 200 business intelligence tools. The text is accompanied by little boxes with scores in them like this:

image

The list was a lot of work. The names of companies are collected in these major categories:

  1. Free cloud business intelligence solutions
  2. Free open source business intelligence tools
  3. Free proprietary business intelligence tools
  4. Open source commercial business intelligence tools
  5. Top business intelligence companies
  6. Free extract, transform and load software
  7. Top extract, transform and load software
  8. Cloud SaaS on demand business intelligence solutions
  9. Freemium cloud business intelligence solutions
  10. Open source balanced scorecard software
  11. Top balanced scorecard software
  12. Open source and free dashboard software
  13. Top dashboard software
  14. Embedded business software
  15. Open source and free unified modeling language tools
  16. Open source and free business process management tools

What I found interesting about the list was:

  • For fee vendors appear in “free” categories; for example, IBM Watson and Microsoft
  • Many of the vendors have versions of their software for the intelligence and law enforcement community. Most of these versions of the companies with specialized tools are not free
  • None of the specialist firms which I track appear on the list; for example, BAE Systems, a company whose tools rival those of many of the other firms on the list.
  • The vendor Attivio was left out. This surprised me because Attivio pitches itself as a business intelligence solution and it has a tie up with Tibco, a product dependent in part on software created by the founders of Recorded Future, a company which I track because it has robust intelligence capabilities embodied in its products and services.
  • There are curious omissions. One important one is Palantir, whose Gotham product powers a number of commercial business intelligence applications like those from Thomson Reuters’ financial product line.
  • Many vendors appear in multiple categories. This left me confused. For major vendors it would have been helpful to provide the company name “IBM” with a summary of what the company offers as free, freemium, open source, proprietary, etc.

Nevertheless, the listing is interesting for those wanting to track some of the vendors pursuing the business intelligence sector. To learn about companies not on the Predictive Analytics’ list, follow DarkCyber, my weekly video program. Each week, I profile intelligence companies which are often off the radar of some commercial procurement teams. That’s unfortunate because the firms I follow are indeed cutting edge when it comes to real life intelligence analysis. Most of these products, in my experience, cost money either for engineering, training, support, or add ons.

You can find the video by navigating to this link or running a query for Arnold Dark Cyber on Google.com or on Googlevideo.com.

Stephen E Arnold, November 30, 2017

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