Five minutes with Raimund Genes

Raimund Genes, Chief technology officer, Trend Micro

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Five minutes with Raimund Genes Raimund Genes, Chief technology officer, Trend Micro.
By Staff Writer Published  February 1, 2014

In Trend Micro’s predictions for 2014, you focus on the rise of the Internet of Everything – is it going to be possible to protect the IoE?

No. The problem when you do all of this, is people don’t think about security. We saw this with Bluetooth. This year, I was at Cisco Live, they showed a prototype of a dental implant, which measures your saliva, and based on this gives a message via Bluetooth to an implanted insulin pump, to control the dose which makes life easier for people with diabetes. But what if I hack into the system?

Very often when they design these things, security is not in there, it becomes an afterthought. There are so many different standards – on the one hand it is good, it is why we don’t predict that we will see something severe in 2014, we will see proof of concept, but it is such a fragmented market, that it is not attractive to attackers – yet.

Hasn’t Cisco said it can protect the IoE?

What I welcome is they have created open APIs, so we third party security vendors could get into this, and even redefine the software defined network for quarantine and isolation of systems. On this layer, you could filter out a lot.

What about the risk to industrial control systems?

We see a lot of proof of concepts, but what is the commercial interest to attack someone and shut down a SCADA infrastructure?

Protecting SCADA is getting more sensitive, we are getting more requests, we already have a solution out in Japan which is locking down industrial control devices, so you can’t manipulate them, we are rolling out another application for control systems, and we are only doing this because there is more demand.

You say 2014 will be a ‘prolific year’ for cybercrime; how much?

For me, it is business as usual. I just read a US police station was infected with a ransomware trojan. The police station paid money because they had sensitive data encrypted [by the ransomware]. If the police are paying cybercriminals to get their data back, this scares me.

And what about the risk from the end of support for Win XP?

We had a long debate within Trend Micro,; we decided we have so many customers still on XP, so we will continue to support XP because we see a perfect storm coming – Java 6 and Windows XP, both old systems, both not supported any more, so the attackers next year will have an easy job. In the enterprise space you still have a lot of XP, especially for critical systems, systems which have been custom built years ago to support the business, and which you just can’t migrate without reprogramming.

We are telling our customers to shield and harden these systems, we have a solution for this, to put a shield around it, and we will do patching, so even if Microsoft doesn’t release patches any more, we will release patterns to stop these attacks.

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