Since the adoption of blockchain, new cyber security projects have become widespread with more solutions available than ever before. While there are certainly a number of options available for companies, there’s one in particular that stands out.
Moving Target Defense technology, or MTD for short.
This is the type of cyber security used to protect federal supercomputers, such as those of the Navy, from cyber attacks. Imagine what would happen if those systems suddenly went offline? It’s simply not an option which is why extensive resources and research by the world’s leading scientists have created MTD as the primary method of defense.
An emerging company that is comprised of those very same researchers who created the MTD cyber security defense systems for the US Navy, US Homeland Security, Lockheed Martin who engineers the aircrafts used for US military services, and Northrop Grumman the fifth largest leading defense group in the world, have come together to make MTD cybersecurity available to the public through blockchain.
Already they’ve captured the attention of IBM Bluemix, Google Cloud, HP and Amazon Web Services.
So how does MTD work? And how does blockchain allow this technology to be used by the public?
Information technology systems were built for simplicity and ease of use, having a straightforward, static configuration. Since their inception, they haven’t changed much, but static systems make an easy target to hackers, versus a more complex “moving target”. In our highly connected world, systems are expected to be online at all times while maintaining a high degree of security and performance, yet the internet itself was not designed to be secure.
“There are billions of addressable targets on the internet today, and most of them are sitting ducks. The challenge for researchers and innovative startups is to ‘move the target’ … In order to change the game on the adversary this is an example of such moving target defense approach.”
Rob Roy CTO, HP Enterprise Security Products
R3sec MTD technology assumes that cyber attacks are inevitable and instead of promising impossible, perfect security, it minimizes the intruder access window, minimizes the effect of a breach, and greatly increases resilience, meaning a system can very quickly (almost instantly) return to its initial healthy state.
Their Moving Target Defense tech places core systems, such as server, applications, services, APIs, IoT services and appliances into several identical holographic/virtual instances that are then put into a constant state of virtual rotation where some are active and some are inactive. Every minute, the active instance (such as a website or server) is replaced with a clean instance (of that website or server) while the initial instance is being inactivated, wiped and reset into clean state by self-cleansing technology.
The end user thereby never notices any difference in comparison to when connecting to a static/steady server and hackers have extremely limited windows of opportunity to do damage. Even if it’s managed, the effects are quickly wiped clean.
Through the constant rotation of virtual servers, malware is deleted in the offline without the need to detect it or know it’s signature. Yet, the attacker visibility is increased by forcing the attacker to apply multiple attacks in an attempt to gain access to digital assets. This leaves more detectable traces and allow for faster incident response, even during Zero Days Attacks. This means the attacker’s identity is made vulnerable in the process for future prevention.
“R3 is the only MTD I know of that prevents or disrupts vulnerability or exploit, while still providing identical functionality”
Melissa Ho (Department of Homeland Security S&T)
By Tokenizing this service, it becomes more affordable and therefore available to both private companies and the mainstream public. The R3S tokens, available through an open token sale, act like a coupon that grants access to R3sec MTD products and services. Token holders receive other coupon benefits such as preferred access or discounts on future products or services.
As the world of blockchain and cryptocurrencies expands, it allows the highest tier technology, such as MTD cyber security tech, to become available to more than just the federal US government.
There are any number of industries in need of better cyber security including finance systems, healthcare, energy, telecommunications, transportation, and any type of company that has a need of protecting information and keeping their servers running smoothly.
For instance, recent breaches in corporates like Equifax, Yahoo, LinkedIn, and Uber have led to over 1 billion identity exposures in 2016-2017 alone. And this does not include any non-reported breaches within governments, NGOs, universities, the mid-sized and small enterprises.
Having a look at cryptocurrency alone as a target market for cyber threats, it becomes evident that many current market exchanges and mining companies are in real danger of facing security breaches. According to a study by Tyler Moore about a third of all cryptocurrency exchanges have been hacked since 2009. The total stolen cryptocurrency already amounts to about $14.5 billion.
Cybersecurity threats and intrusion are hence a global problem that dominates everyday media, politics, business and even the private life of individuals in our society. Having MTD tech services such as that provided by R3sec becomes a major priority then as the standard cyber security measures are too numerous, difficult to maintain, and insufficient.