The SEI Podcast Series presents conversations in software engineering, cybersecurity, and future technologies.
Here's the Latest Episode from Software Engineering Institute (SEI) Podcast Series:
The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) for the Defense Industrial Base (DIB) defines specific cybersecurity practices across five levels of maturity while also measuring the degree to which those practices are institutionalized within an organization. The CMMC model draws on maturity processes and cybersecurity best practices from multiple standards, including the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) frameworks and references, as well as input from DIB entities and the Department of Defense. CMMC requires that DIB organizations complete an assessment of all CMMC practices at a particular level and become certified by a CMMC third-party assessment organization. When fully implemented, CMMC will require all DIB companies to achieve certification at one of the five CMMC levels, which includes both technical security practices and maturity processes. In this SEI Podcast, Andrew Hoover and Katie Stewart, architects of the CMMC model, present guidelines for developing an effective CMMC policy.
The culture of computers and information technology changes quickly. The Future of Cyber Podcast series explores the future of cyber and whether we can use the innovations of the past to address the problems of the future. In our latest episode, Bobbie Stempfley, director of the SEI’s CERT Division, interviews Dr. Diana Burley, executive director and chair of the Institute for Information Infrastructure Protection, or I3P, and vice provost for research at American University. Their discussion focused on educating the cybersecurity workforce in a way that closes the gap between what students are taught in school and the skills they’ll need to use in the workplace.
The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) for the Defense Industrial Base (DIB) defines specific cybersecurity practices across five levels of maturity while also measuring the degree to which those practices are institutionalized within an organization. The CMMC model draws on maturity processes and cybersecurity best practices from multiple standards, including the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) frameworks and references, as well as input from DIB entities and the Department of Defense. CMMC requires that DIB organizations complete an assessment of all CMMC practices at a particular level and become certified by a CMMC third-party assessment organization. When fully implemented, CMMC will require all DIB companies to achieve certification at one of the five CMMC levels, which includes both technical security practices and maturity processes. In this SEI Podcast, Andrew Hoover and Katie Stewart, architects of the CMMC model, discuss process documentation, a Level 2 requirement.
Software development is shifting to incremental delivery to meet the demand for software quicker and at lower costs. With the current cyber threat climate, the demand for cybersecurity is growing but existing compliance processes focus on a completed product and do not support incremental delivery. Cybersecurity must be carefully woven into each increment deliver results with sufficient security and quality. Previous SEI research has shown that improved quality results in improved cybersecurity. In this SEI Podcast, Dr. Carol Woody and Will Hayes discuss an approach that allows organizations to integrate cybersecurity into the agile pipeline.
The Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) defines specific cybersecurity practices across five levels of maturity while also measuring the degree to which those practices are institutionalized within an organization. The CMMC model draws on maturity processes and cybersecurity best practices from multiple standards, including the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) frameworks and references, as well as input from Defense Industrial Base (DIB) entities and the Department of Defense. CMMC requires that DIB organizations complete an assessment of all the CMMC practices at a particular level and become certified by a CMMC third-party assessment organization. When fully implemented, CMMC will require all DIB companies to achieve certification at one of the five CMMC levels, which includes both technical security practices and maturity processes. In this SEI Podcast, Andrew Hoover and Katie Stewart, architects of the CMMC model, discuss CMMC Levels 1-3 and what steps organizations need to take to move beyond NIST 800-171.
For more than 30 years, the cybersecurity community has worked to increase the effectiveness of our cybersecurity and resilience efforts. Today we face an explosion of devices, the pervasiveness of software, the threat of adversarial capability, and the dependence of national capabilities on the cyber domain. These challenges demand that we think about how to achieve the future we need, which is the subject of a new series of podcasts, The Future of Cyber. In this episode, Bobbie Stempfley, director of the CERT Division of the SEI, explores the future of secure coding with Steve Lipner, the executive director of SAFECode and former director of software security at Microsoft, where he created Microsoft’s Security Development Lifecycle.
In this SEI podcast, Hasan Yasar and Jose Morales discuss challenges to implementing DevOps in highly regulated environments (HREs), exploring issues such as environment parity, the approval process, and compliance. This podcast is the second to explore DevOps in HREs.
The culture of computers and information technology evolves quickly. In this environment, how can we build a culture of security through regulations and best practices when technology can move so much faster than legislative bodies?
The Future of Cyber Podcast Series explores whether we can use the innovations of the past to address the problems of the future. In this SEI Podcast, David Hickton, founding director of the University of Pittsburgh Institute for Cyber Law, Policy, and Security, sits down with Bobbie Stempfley, director of the SEI’s CERT Division, to talk about the future of cybercrime.
Artificially intelligent (AI) systems hold great promise to empower us with knowledge and enhance human effectiveness. As a senior research scientist in human-machine interaction at the Software Engineering Institute's Emerging Technology Center, Carol Smith works to further understand how humans and machines can better collaborate to solve important problems and also understand our responsibilities and how that work continues once AI systems are operational. In this podcast, Smith discusses a framework that builds upon the importance of diverse teams and ethical standards to ensure that AI systems are trustworthy and able to effectively augment warfighters.
Those who work in computing today bring a wide array of backgrounds and experiences to the profession. In this podcast learn how Madison Quinn Oliver, who wanted to work at Carnegie Mellon University since childhood, relied on a strong work ethic and lifelong pursuit of education to become an associate vulnerability engineer on the Vulnerability Coordination Team within the SEI’s CERT Division. This is the second installment in our My Story in Computing podcast series.
In this podcast, Allen Householder and David Warren discuss the CERT Guide to Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure, which is intended for use by security researchers, software vendors, and other stakeholders in navigating the complexities of informing others about security vulnerabilities.
Dr. April Galyardt, a machine learning research scientist at the SEI, discusses her career journey, challenges, and lessons learned along the way. This episode is the latest installment in our series highlighting the work of women in software and cybersecurity.
Computers and information technology are getting more and more integrated into our daily lives, so they need to be easy to use. But recent, historically large data breaches have demonstrated the need to make systems more secure and to protect information about individuals. How will the security−privacy−usability triangle successfully accommodate the challenges that the future will bring? In this podcast, Dr. Lorrie Faith Cranor, director of CyLab, sits down with Bobbie Stempfley, director of the SEI’s CERT Division, to talk about the future of cyber in security and privacy.
For more than 30 years, the cybersecurity community has worked to increase the effectiveness of our cybersecurity and resilience efforts. Today we face an explosion of devices, the pervasiveness of software, the threat of adversarial capability, and the dependence of national capabilities on the cyber domain. These challenges demand that we think about how to achieve the future we need. In this podcast, the first in a series exploring The Future of Cyber, Bobbie Stempfley, director of the CERT Division of the SEI, and Dr. Michael McQuade, vice-president for research at Carnegie Mellon University, explore past and present technologies that have helped to secure our digital infrastructure and how past advancements will help us secure future architectures.
In this podcast, Jeff Gennari and Cory Cohen discuss updates to the Pharos Binary Analysis Framework in GitHub, including a new plug-in to import OOAnalyzer analysis into the NSA's recently released Ghidra software reverse engineering tool suite.
Dr. Carol Woody discusses the career path that led to her current role as technical manager for the Cybersecurity Engineering (CSE) team in the SEI’s CERT Division.
Successful management of incidents that threaten an organization's computer security is a complex endeavor. Frequently an organization's primary focus is on the response aspects of security incidents, which results in its failure to manage incidents beyond simply reacting to threatening events. In this SEI Podcast, Robin Ruefle and Mark Zajicek discuss recent work that provides a baseline or benchmark of incident management practices for an organization and detail how important it is to focus on preparation for incident management along with coordination and communication of analysis and response activities.
April Galyardt, Angela Horneman, and Jonathan Spring discuss seven key questions that managers and decision makers should ask about machine learning to effectively solve cybersecurity problems.
In this SEI Podcast, Kristi Roth, a summer 2019 intern in the Software Solutions Division at the Software Engineering Institute, discusses the path that led from a childhood spent calculating math problems in her head to a high school Introduction to Programming class to Penn State University where she is a senior computer science major.
Solving the technical aspects isn’t enough to build reliable, enduring, resilient software and systems. Human decision making, behavioral factors, and cultural factors influence software engineering, acquisition, and cybersecurity. In this podcast roundtable, Andrew Mellinger, Suzanne Miller, and Hasan Yasar discuss the human factors that impact software engineering, from communication tools they use to the environment that they work in.
In this SEI Podcast, Anita Carleton discusses the career path that led to her current role as acting director of the SEI’s Software Solutions Division and the challenges and mentors (Watts Humphrey) that she encountered along the way.
In this podcast, the authors discuss a 2019 paper that outlines challenges with the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) and proposes changes to improve it.
Today's major defense systems rely heavily on software-enabled capabilities. However, many defense programs acquiring new systems first determine the physical items to develop, assuming the contractors for those items will provide all needed software for the capability. But software by its nature spans physical items: it provides the inter-system communication that has a direct influence on most capabilities, and thus must be architected intelligently, especially when pieces are built by different contractors. As Dr. Sarah Sheard discusses in this SEI Podcast, if this architecture step is not done properly, a software-reliant project can be set up to fail from the first architectural decision.
The Software Assurance Framework (SAF) is a collection of cybersecurity practices that programs can apply across the acquisition lifecycle and supply chain. The SAF can be used to assess an acquisition program’s current cybersecurity practices and chart a course for improvement, ultimately reducing the cybersecurity risk of deployed, software-reliant systems. In this podcast, Dr. Carol Woody discusses the selection of metrics for measuring the software assurance of a product as it is developed and delivered to function in a specific system context.
In 2017 and 2018, the world witnessed a record number of climate and weather-related disasters. Government agencies are increasingly interested in the use of artificial intelligence (AI) to help first responders in locating survivors, identifying structures in satellite imagery, and removing debris after a disaster. Ritwik Gupta, a machine learning research scientist in the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center, discusses the use of AI in humanitarian assistance and disaster response (HADR) efforts.
Classifying errors in a component-based system is challenging. Components, and the systems that rely on them, can fail in myriad, unpredictable ways. It is nonetheless a challenge that should be addressed because component-based, software-driven systems are increasingly used for safety-critical applications. In this podcast, SEI researchers Peter Feiler and Sam Procter present the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) EMV2 Error Library, which is an established taxonomy that draws on a broad range of previous work in classifying system errors.
As a principle researcher at the SEI, Suzanne Miller works to help the Department of Defense develop and field software to the warfighter. In this SEI Podcast, the latest highlighting the work of women in software and cybersecurity, Miller discusses the career path that led to her current position and the challenges and mentors that she encountered along the way.
In this SEI Podcast, Dr. Giulia Fanti, an assistant professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, discusses her latest research including privacy problems in the cryptocurrency and blockchain space and generative adversarial networks.
Cyber Intelligence is a rapidly changing field, and many organizations do not have the people, time, and funding in place to build a cyber intelligence team, according to a report on cyber intelligence released in late May by researchers in the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center.
As this podcast details, the report provides a snapshot of best practices and biggest challenges along with three guides for implementing cyber intelligence with artificial intelligence, the internet of things, and public cyber threat frameworks.
Lead author Jared Ettinger discusses the findings of the report, which the SEI conducted on behalf of the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence.
Simulation environments allow people to practice skills such as setting up and defending networks. If we can record informative traces of activity in these online environments and draw accurate inferences about trainee capabilities, then we can provide evidence-based guidance on performance, assess mission readiness, optimize training schedules, and refine training modules. April Galyardt, a machine learning research scientist with Carnegie Mellon University's Software Engineering Institute, discusses efforts to develop a new approach to assessing the skills of the cybersecurity workforce.
Highly regulated environments (HREs), such as finance and healthcare, are mandated by policies for various reasons, most often general security and protection of intellectual property. These policies make the sharing and open access principles of DevOps that much harder to apply. In this podcast, SEI researchers Hasan Yasar and Jose Morales discuss the process, challenges, approaches, and lessons learned in implementing DevOps in the software development lifecycle in HREs.
After earning a degree in architecture, Dr. Ipek Ozkaya studied computational design at Carnegie Mellon University. Now at the Software Engineering Institute, Ozkaya researches better ways for designing software and helping organizations manage technical debt in large-scale, complex software-intensive systems. In this podcast, the latest in our Women in Software and Cybersecurity podcast series, Ozkaya talks about the educational choices and career path that led to her current work.
Dr. Paul Nielsen discusses his involvement on a Defense Science Board Task Force that concluded that the software factory should be a key player in the acquisition and sustainment of software for defense.
“This is one case where the military or the government can learn from industry, sort of a spin-in to the government. The government has traditionally followed other approaches that were very requirements-based. They have perfected requirements engineering. What we have found is that in many cases with software systems, we really don’t know the requirements when we start, not completely, and they evolve with time as users start to experience the software.”
Operation Wire Wire, a coordinated law enforcement effort by the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, was conducted over a six-month period and resulted in 74 arrests in the United States and overseas, including 29 in Nigeria and 3 in Canada, Mauritius, and Poland. The operation also resulted in the seizure of nearly $2.4 million and the disruption and recovery of approximately $14 million in fraudulent wire transfers. In this podcast, Anne Connell, a researcher in the SEI’s CERT Division, discusses recent business email compromise (BEC) attacks, including the one at the center of Operation Wire Wire and another attack involving a Texas energy company. Connell also offers guidance on how individuals and organizations can protect themselves from these sophisticated new modes of attack.
Those who work in computing today bring a wide array of backgrounds and experiences to the profession. In this podcast, the first in a series, Dr. Eliezer Kanal—a former premed student, computational neuroscientist, health-care technical manager, financial quantitative analyst, freelance web developer, and IT consultant—discusses his background and education, all of which led to his current work leading a team of data scientists in the SEI’s CERT Division.
In this SEI Podcast, which highlights the work of Women in Software and Cybersecurity, Eileen Wrubel, co-lead of the SEI’s Agile/DevOps Transformation directorate, discusses her career journey.
Technical debt communicates the tradeoff between the short-term benefits of rapid delivery and the long-term value of developing a software system that is easy to evolve, modify, repair, and sustain. In this SEI Podcast, Rod Nord and Ipek Ozkaya discuss the SEI's current work in technical debt including the development of analysis techniques to help software engineers and decision makers manage the effect of technical debt on their software projects.
In her work at the SEI, Grace Lewis focuses on securely pushing cloud resources to the edge and integrating IoT devices into systems. Lewis’s research helps soldiers in the field access cloud resources even if they are not fully connected to the cloud. It also enables IoT devices to securely integrate with edge resources to pre-process data on its way to the cloud. In this SEI Podcast, Lewis discusses her career journey, which led to her leading Tactical Edge Computing at the SEI. This podcast is the latest installment in our Women in Software and Cybersecurity podcast series.
In this SEI Podcast interview, Roberta (Bobbie) Stempfley discusses her career and journey to becoming the director of the SEI’s CERT Division. This podcast is one of the inaugural interviews in our Women in Software and Cybersecurity podcast series.
In this SEI Podcast, Dr. Lorrie Cranor, director of CyLab, discusses her career, her work in privacy and security, and her upcoming keynote at the 2019 Women in Cybersecurity Conference, March 28-30 in Pittsburgh. This podcast is one of the inaugural interviews in our Women in Software and Cybersecurity podcast series.
Tom Longstaff, who in 2018 was hired as the SEI’s chief technology officer, discusses the challenges of leading a technical organization in the age of artificial intelligence.
In today's operational climate, threats and attacks against network infrastructures have become far too common. Researchers in the SEI’s CERT Division work with organizations and large enterprises, many of whom analyze their network traffic data for ongoing status, attacks, or potential attacks. Through this work we have observed both challenges and best practices as these network traffic analysts analyze incoming contacts to the network, including packets traces or flows. In this SEI Podcast, Tim Shimeall and Timur Snoke, both researchers in the SEI’s CERT Division, highlight some best practices (and application of these practices) that they have observed in network traffic analysis.
Bugs and weaknesses in software are common: 84 percent of system breaches exploit vulnerabilities at the application layer. The prevalence of software-related problems is a key motivation for using application security testing tools. With a growing number of application security testing tools available, it can be confusing for leaders, developers, and engineers to know which tools address which issues. In this podcast, Thomas Scanlon, a researcher in the SEI’s CERT Division, discusses the different types of application security testing tools and provides guidance on how and when to use each tool.
Static analysis tools used to identify potential vulnerabilities in source code produce a large number of alerts with high false-positive rates that engineers must painstakingly examine to find legitimate flaws. Researchers in the SEI’s CERT Division have developed the SCALe (Source Code Analysis Laboratory) tool to help analysts be more efficient and effective at auditing static analysis alerts. In this podcast, CERT researchers Lori Flynn and Zach Kurtz discuss ongoing research using test suites as a source of labeled training data to create classifiers for static analysis alerts.
Beyond its financial hype, researchers are exploring and understanding the promise of Blockchain technologies. In this SEI Podcast, Eliezer Kanal and Eugene Leventhal discuss blockchain research at Carnegie Mellon University and beyond.
Tom Longstaff, who in 2018 was hired as the SEI’s chief technology officer, discusses the challenges of leading a technical organization in the age of artificial intelligence.
Ritwik Gupta and Carson Sestili discuss the future of deep learning.
“Here is amazing research being done all over the world on how we make what is called explainable AI. How do we explain what the deep learning is trying to do? This is a problem across all fields.”
Ritwik Gupta of the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center and Carson Sestili, formerly of the SEI’s CERT Division and now with Google, discuss adversarial machine learning.
Peter Feiler discusses the cost savings (26.1 percent) realized when using the System Architecture Virtual Integration approach on the development of software-reliant systems for aircraft.
“If you discover [software defects] at system integration test, the cost of fixing a problem is 300 to 1,000 times higher than doing it upfront. So if upfront, you spent $10,000 fixing it, it’s between $3 and $10 million on the backend that you are saving by the way.”
Ritwik Gupta of the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center and Carson Sestili, formerly of the SEI’s CERT Division and now with Google, discuss the importance of diverse perspectives in deep learning.
“If you feel like I am an OK programmer, but I am a good deep thinker and a good mathematician, that is actually one of the corners of what it takes to be a successful data scientist. Again, in regard to our previous conversation, you cannot get away with only knowing math. But if you do know math, you are going to be useful to people in a way that other people will not be. Anyway, there is hope. ”
Roberta “Bobbie” Stempfley, who was appointed director of the SEI’s CERT Division in June 2017, discusses a technical strategy for cybersecurity.
“There is never enough time, money, power, resources—whatever it is—and we make design tradeoffs. Adversaries are looking at what opportunities that creates. They are looking at failures in implementation.”
Don Faatz and Tim Morrow, researchers with the SEI’s CERT Division, outline best practices that organizations should use to address the vulnerabilities and risks in moving applications and data to cloud services.
Tim Morrow and Donald Faatz outline the risks, threats, and vulnerabilities that organizations face when moving applications or data to the cloud.
“If you look at large organizations like the DoD, they have embraced this. They are looking to buy infrastructures as a service and even moving office automation to the cloud. For smaller organizations, though, it is something of a challenge, so we wanted to look at and give people some ideas about the challenges they will face when they do this.”
Ritwik Gupta and Carson Sestili describe their use of deep learning in IARPA’s Functional Map of the World Challenge.
“The idea is how can you take these very minute differences, not only in scale, but also in landscape, the buildings on there, etc., and identify different land functions. This makes it very different from just a traditional image classification problem because you have to take in not only the object of interest, which is like let’s say a building, but also its entire surroundings.”
In this podcast excerpt, Ritwik Gupta and Carson Sestili describe deep learning and how it differs from machine learning.
“As you compose more and more non-linear functions together, you can represent a much wider function space than you could with just one non-linear function. That is why deep learning is different from shallow learning. Shallow learning doesn’t compose multiple things together. Deep learning does.”
Tim Shimeall and Timur Snoke, researchers in the SEI’s CERT Division, examine the role of the network traffic analyst in capturing and evaluating ever-increasing volumes of network data.
“Part of it is the ability to use a wide variety of tools to answer questions about what is happening on the network and to figure out ways to go past inference and supposition and to get facts that can actually provide support for the hypothesis that you’re coming up with.
Tracy Cassidy and Carrie Gardner, researchers with the CERT National Insider Threat Center, discuss research on using technology to detect an employee’s intent to cause physical harm.
“A chronology naturally fell out that gave a temporal description of how a particular incident unfolded. So we can see precursor events that foreshadowed the event or the escalation of events that were to
To contain costs, it is essential to understand which factors drive costs over the longer term and can be controlled. In studies of software development, as a research community, we have not done an adequate job of differentiating causal influences from noncausal statistical correlations. In this podcast, Mike Konrad and Bob Stoddard discuss the use of an approach known as causal learning that can help the Department of Defense identify which factors cause software costs to escalate and, therefore, serve as a better basis for guidance on how to intervene to better control costs.
In this podcast, Dr. Carol Woody discusses opportunities and risks in cybersecurity engineering, software assurance, and the resulting CERT Cybersecurity Engineering and Software Assurance Professional Certificate. The courses for this certificate program focus on software-reliant systems engineering and acquisition activities. The goal of the program is to infuse an awareness of cybersecurity (and an approach to identifying security requirements, engineering risk, and supply chain risk) early in the lifecycle. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In the SEI’s examination of the software sustainment phase of the Department of Defense (DoD) acquisition lifecycle, we have noted that the best descriptor for sustainment efforts for software is “continuous engineering.” Typically, during this phase, the hardware elements are repaired or have some structural modifications to carry new weapons or sensors. Software, on the other hand, continues to evolve in response to new security threats, new safety approaches, or new functionality provided within the system of systems. In this podcast, Mike Phillips and Harry Levinson will examine the intersection of three themes—product line practices, software sustainment, and public-private partnerships—that emerged during our work with one government program. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The SEI Emerging Technology Center is conducting a study sponsored by the U.S. Office of the Director of National Intelligence to understand cyber intelligence best practices, common challenges, and future technologies that we will culminate in a published report. Through interviews with U.S.-based organizations from a variety of sectors, researchers are identifying tools, practices, and resources that help those organizations make informed decisions that protect their information and assets. In this podcast, Jared Ettinger describes preliminary findings from the interviews including best practices in cyber intelligence. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Although traditional machine learning methods are being successfully used to solve many problems in cybersecurity, their success often depends on choosing and extracting the right features from a data set, which can be hard with complex data. In this podcast, Ritwik Gupta and Carson Sestili explore deep learning, a popular and quickly growing subfield of machine learning that has had great success on problems about these data sets, and on many other problems where picking the right features for the job is hard or impossible. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In today's global business environment, risk management must be aligned to business strategy. As companies continue to shift their business models, strategies change and risk management becomes even more important. A company must find the right balance between risk resiliency and risk agility. The chief risk officer (CRO) role is an important catalyst to make that happen, so a company's long term strategic objectives may be realized. The CRO Certificate Program is developed and delivered by Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy, and the CERT Division of the Software Engineering Institute (SEI). In this podcast, Summer Fowler and Ari Lightman discuss the evolving role of the chief risk officer and a Chief Risk Officer Program. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and other agencies are expressing significant interest in blockchain technology because it promises inherent transparency, resiliency, forgery-resistance, and nonrepudiation, which can be used to protect sensitive infrastructure. At the same time, numerous high-profile incidents of blockchain coding errors that cause major damage to organizations have raised serious concerns about blockchain adoption. In this podcast, Eliezer Kanal and Michael Coblenz discuss the creation of Obsidian, a novel programming language specifically tailored to secure blockchain software development that significantly reduces the risk of such coding errors. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
DevOps breaks down software development silos to encourage free communication and constant collaboration. Agile, an iterative approach to development, emphasizes frequent deliveries of software. In this podcast, Eileen Wrubel, technical lead for the SEI’s Agile-in-Government program, and Hasan Yasar, technical manager of the Secure Lifecycle Solutions Group in the SEI’s CERT Division, discuss how Agile and DevOps can be deployed together to meet organizational needs. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In fall 2017, Carnegie Mellon hit the news when an unprecedented 49 percent of women entered the computer science degree program. Furthermore, since 1999, the School of Computer Science has enrolled and sustained well above national averages of women in the CS major, all without changing the curriculum to be “pink” in any way (as is often presumed). In this podcast, Carol Frieze, Grace Lewis, and Jeria Quesenberry discuss CMU’s approach to creating a more inclusive environment for all computer science students, regardless of gender. They also discuss resources that educators can use to encourage all students to study computer science at the primary and secondary levels. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
This series of podcasts presents excerpts from a recent SEI virtual event, Is Software Spoiling Us? Jeff Boleng, acting chief technical officer, moderated the discussion, which featured a panel of SEI researchers: Grace Lewis, Eliezer Kanal, Joseph Yankel, and Satya Venneti. In this segment, the panel discusses technical innovations that can be applied to the Department of Defense including improved situational awareness, human-machine interactions, artificial intelligence, machine learning, data, and continuous integration and deployments. The panel also discusses barriers to implementing these technologies. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
This series of podcasts presents excerpts from a recent SEI virtual event, Is Software Spoiling Us. Jeff Boleng, acting chief technical officer, moderated the discussion, which featured a panel of SEI researchers: Grace Lewis, Eliezer Kanal, Joseph Yankel, and Satya Venneti. In this podcast, the panel discusses awesome innovations in daily life that are made possible because of software. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
DevOps, which breaks down software development silos to encourage free communication and constant collaboration, reinforces many Agile methodologies. Equally important, the Risk Management Framework, provides a clearly defined framework that helps program managers incorporate security and risk management activities into the software and systems development life cycle. In this podcast, Eileen Wrubel, technical lead for the SEI’s Agile-in-Government program leads a roundtable discussion into how Agile, DevOps, and the Risk Management Framework can work together. The panelists include Tim Chick, Will Hayes, and Hasan Yasar. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Insider threat continues to be a problem with approximately 50 percent of organizations experiencing at least one malicious insider incident per year, according to the 2017 U.S. State of Cybercrime Survey. Although the attack methods vary depending on the industry, the primary types of attacks identified by researchers at the CERT Insider Threat Center—theft of intellectual property, sabotage, fraud, and espionage—continue to hold true. In our work with public and private industry, we continue to see that insider threats are influenced by a combination of technical, behavioral, and organizational issues. In this podcast Randy Trzeciak, technical manager of the CERT National Insider Threat Center, discusses the fifth edition of the Common Sense Guide to Mitigating Insider Threats, which highlights policies, procedures, and technologies to mitigate insider threats in all areas of an organization. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Pharos was created by the SEI CERT Division to automate the reverse engineering of binaries, with a focus on malicious code analysis. Pharos, which was recently released on Github, builds upon the ROSE compiler infrastructure developed by Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory for disassembly, control flow analysis, instruction semantics, and more. In this podcast, the SEI CERT Division’s Jeff Gennari discusses updates to the Pharos framework including new tools, improvements, and bug fixes. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In the 2016 Cyber Security Intelligence Index, IBM found that 60 percent of all cyber attacks were carried out by insiders. One reason that insider threat remains so problematic is that organizations typically respond to these threats with negative technical incentives, such as practices that monitor and constrain employee behavior, detect and punish misbehavior, and otherwise try to force employees to act in the best interest of the organization. In this podcast, Andrew Moore and Dan Bauer highlight results from our recent research that suggests organizations need to take a more holistic approach to mitigating insider threat: one that considers the impact of organizational behavior on insider motivations. In particular, positive incentives can complement traditional practices for insider threat defense in a way that can improve employee worklife as well as more effectively reduce insider risk. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Dr. Andrew Moore, who is the Dean of the School of Computer Science at CMU, predicted that 2016 would be a watershed year for machine emotional intelligence. Evidence of this can be seen in the Department of Defense, which increasingly relies on biometric data, such as iris scans, gait recognition, and heart-rate monitoring to protect against both cyber and physical attacks. Current state-of-the-art approaches do not make it possible to gather biometric data in real-world settings, such as border and airport security checkpoints, where people are in motion. In this podcast, Satya Venneti presents exploratory research undertaken by the SEI's Emerging Technology Center to design algorithms to extract heart rate from video capture of non-stationary subjects in real-time. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In today’s increasingly interconnected world, the information security community must be prepared to address emerging vulnerabilities that may arise from new technology domains. Understanding trends and emerging technologies can help information security professionals, leaders of organizations, and others interested in information security to anticipate and prepare for such vulnerabilities. In this podcast, CERT vulnerability analyst Dan Klinedinst discusses research aimed at helping the Department of Homeland Security United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) understand future technologies and their risks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
For some time now, the cyber world has been under attack by a diffused set of enemies who improvise their own tools in many different varieties and hide them where they can do much damage. In this podcast, CERT researcher Vijay Sarvepalli explores Domain Name System or DNS Blocking, the idea of disrupting communications from malicious code such as ransomware that is used to lock up your digital assets, or data-exfiltration software that is used to steal your digital data. DNS blocking ensures a wide impact while avoiding the complexity of having to install or instrument every device in your enterprise. The key takeaway is to target a break in the chain of malware to minimize its effectiveness and the malicious code developer’s intended success. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
When it comes to network traffic, it’s important to establish a filtering process that identifies and blocks potential cyberattacks, such as worms spreading ransomware and intruders exploiting vulnerabilities, while permitting the flow of legitimate traffic. In this podcast, the latest in a series on best practices for network security, Rachel Kartch explores best practices for network border protection at the Internet router and firewall. It is important to note that these recommendations are geared toward large organizations and government agencies and would not likely be appropriate for a home network or very small business network. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Since its debut on Jeopardy in 2011, IBM’s Watson has generated a lot of interest in potential applications across many industries. As detailed in this podcast, Mark Sherman recently led a research team investigating whether the Department of Defense could use Watson to improve software assurance and help acquisition professionals assemble and review relevant evidence from documents. Specifically, Sherman and his team examined whether typical developers could build an IBM Watson application to support an assurance review. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Software is a growing component of modern business- and mission-critical systems. As organizations become more dependent on software, security-related risks to their organizational missions also increase. Traditional security-engineering approaches rely on addressing security risks during the operation and maintenance of software-reliant systems. The costs required to control security risks increase significantly when organizations wait until systems are deployed to address those risks. Field experiences of technical staff at the SEI indicate that few programs currently implement effective cybersecurity practices early in the acquisition lifecycle. Recent Department of Defense directives are beginning to shift programs’ priorities regarding cybersecurity. As a result, researchers from the CERT Division of the SEI have started cataloging the cybersecurity practices needed to acquire, engineer, and field software-reliant systems that are acceptably secure. In this podcast, Carol Woody and Christopher Alberts introduce the prototype Software Assurance Framework (SAF), a collection of cybersecurity practices that programs can apply across the acquisition lifecycle and supply chain. The SAF can be used to assess an acquisition program’s current cybersecurity practices and chart a course for improvement, ultimately reducing the cybersecurity risk of deployed software-reliant systems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
All major defense contractors in the market can tell you about their approaches to implementing the values and principles found in the Agile Manifesto. Published frameworks and methodologies are rapidly maturing, and a wave of associated terminology is part of the modern lexicon. We are seeing consultants feuding on Internet forums as well, each claiming to have the “true” answer for what Agile is and how to make it work in your organization. The challenge now is to scale Agile to work in complex settings with larger teams, larger systems, longer timelines, diverse operating environments, and multiple engineering disciplines. In this podcast, Will Hayes and Eileen Wrubel present five perspectives on scaling Agile from leading thinkers in the field, including Scott Ambler, Steve Messenger, Craig Larman, Jeff Sutherland, and Dean Leffingwell. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
On May 12, 2017, in the course of a day, the WannaCry ransomware attack infected nearly a quarter million computers. WannaCry is the latest in a growing number of ransomware attacks where, instead of stealing data, cyber criminals hold data hostage and demand a ransom payment. WannaCry was perhaps the largest ransomware attack to date, taking over a wide swath of global computers from FedEx in the United States to the systems that power Britain’s healthcare system to systems across Asia, according to the New York Times. In this podcast, CERT researchers spell out several best practices for prevention and response to a ransomware attack. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The term "software security" often evokes negative feelings among software developers because it is associated with additional programming effort, uncertainty, and road blocks to fast development and release. To secure software, developers must follow numerous guidelines that, while intended to satisfy some regulation or other, can be very restrictive and hard to understand. As a result, a lot of fear, uncertainty, and doubt can surround software security. In this podcast, Hasan Yasar discusses how the Secure DevOps movement attempts to combat the toxic environment surrounding software security by shifting the paradigm from following rules and guidelines to creatively determining solutions for tough security problems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The position of SEI Fellow is awarded to people who have made an outstanding contribution of the work of the SEI and from home the SEI leadership may expect valuable advice for continued success in the institute’s mission. Peter Feiler was named an SEI Fellow in August 2016. This podcast is the second in a series highlighting interviews with SEI Fellows Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The network time protocol (NTP) synchronizes the time of a computer client or server to another server or within a few milliseconds of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). NTP servers, long considered a foundational service of the Internet, have more recently been used to amplify large-scale Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks. While 2016 did not see a noticeable uptick in the frequency of DDoS attacks, the last 12 months have witnessed some of the largest DDoS attacks, according to Akamai's State of the Internet/Security report. One issue that attackers have exploited is abusable NTP servers. In 2014, there were over seven million abusable NTP servers. As a result of software upgrades, repaired configuration files, or the simple fact that ISPs and IXPs have decided to block NTP traffic, the number of abusable servers dropped by almost 99 percent in a matter months, according to a January 2015 article in ACM Queue. But there is still work to be done. It only takes 5,000 abusable NTP servers to generate a DDoS attack in the range of 50-400 Gbps. In this podcast, Timur Snoke explores the challenges of NTP and prescribes some best practices for securing accurate time with this protocol. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
First responders, search-and-rescue teams, and military personnel often work in “tactical edge” environments defined by limited computing resources, rapidly changing mission requirements, high levels of stress, and limited connectivity. In these tactical edge environments, software applications that enable tasks such as face recognition, language translation, decision support, and mission planning and execution are critical due to computing and battery limitations on mobile devices. Our work on tactical cloudlets addresses some of these challenges by providing a forward-deployed platform for computation offload and data staging. When establishing communication between two nodes, such as a mobile device and a tactical cloudlet in the field, identification, authentication, and authorization provide the information and assurances necessary for the nodes to trust each other (i.e., mutual trust). A common solution for establishing trust is to create and share credentials in advance and then use an online trusted authority to validate the credentials of the nodes. The tactical environments in which first responders, search-and-rescue, and military personnel operate, however, do not consistently provide access to that online authority or certificate repository because they are disconnected, intermittent, limited (DIL). In this podcast, Grace Lewis presents a solution for establishing trusted identities in disconnected environments based on secure key generation and exchange in the field, as well as an evaluation and implementation of the solution. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2014-2015, a group of researchers across various disciplines gathered at the Caltech Keck Institute for Space Studies (KISS) to explore whether recent advances in multifunctional, reconfigurable, and adaptive structures could enable a microenvironment control to support space exploration in extreme environments. The workshop series spawned multiple working groups and project ideas for pushing the state-of-the-art in space exploration, colonization and infrastructure. One such project, called the Multi-planetary Smart Tile, explores the possibility of creating a multi-functional power grid for the solar system that is capable of distributed computation, renewable power generation, and power beaming to remote locations. In this podcast, Dr. James Edmondson discusses his work to bring distributed artificial intelligence to a next generation, renewable power grid in space. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Making sure government and privately owned drones share international air space safely and effectively is a top priority for government officials. Distributed Adaptive Real-Time (DART) systems are key to many areas of Department of Defense (DoD) capability, including the safe execution of autonomous, multi-unmanned aerial systems missions having civilian benefits. DART systems promise to revolutionize several such areas of mutual civilian-DoD interest, such as robotics, transportation, energy, and health care. To fully realize the potential of DART systems, however, the software controlling them must be engineered for high-assurance and certified to operate safely and effectively. In short, these systems must satisfy guaranteed and highly-critical safety requirements (e.g., collision avoidance) while adapting smartly to achieve application requirements, such as protection coverage, while operating in dynamic and uncertain environments. In this podcast, James Edmondson and Sagar Chaki describe an architecture and approach to engineering high-assurance software for DART systems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In today's increasingly interconnected world, the information security community must be prepared to address vulnerabilities that may arise from new technologies. Understanding trends in emerging technologies can help information security professionals, leaders of organizations, and others interested in information security identify areas for further study. Researchers in the SEI's CERT Division recently examined the security of a large swath of technology domains being developed in industry and maturing over the next five years. This podcast highlights our current understanding of future technologies and identified domains that not only impacted cybersecurity but also finance, personal health, and safety. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As software developers deal with issues such as legacy modernization, agile adoption, and architecture, they need to be able to articulate the tradeoffs of design and business decisions. In this podcast, Ipek Ozkaya talks about managing technical debt as a core software engineering practice and its importance in the education of future software engineers. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Domain Name System (DNS) is an essential component of the Internet, a virtual phone book of names and numbers, but we rarely think about it until something goes wrong. DNS also serves as the backbone for other services critical to organizations including email, external web access, file sharing and voice over IP (VoIP). There are steps, however, that network administrators can take to ensure the security and resilience of their DNS infrastructure and avoid security pitfalls. In this podcast, Mark Langston discusses best practices for designing a secure, reliable DNS infrastructure. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As a software system moves through its lifecycle, each phase calls for the architect to use a different mix of skills. This podcast explores three roles and three failure patterns of software architects that he has observed working with industry and government software projects. This blog post by John Klein is read by Bill Thomas. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Recent research indicates that security is no longer only a matter of code and is tightly linked to software architecture. SEI researchers have created security-focused modeling tools that capture vulnerabilities and their propagation paths in an architecture. These security-focused modeling tools help security analysts and researchers improve system and software analysis. In this podcast, Julien Delange discusses the motivation for the work, the available tools, and how to use them. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In November 2016, Internet users across the Eastern Seaboard of the United States had trouble accessing popular websites, such as Reddit, Netflix, and the New York Times. Known as the Dyn attack, the disruption was the result of multiple distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks against a single organization: Dyn, a New Hampshire-based Internet infrastructure company. DDoS attacks can be extremely disruptive, and they are on the rise. The Verisign Distributed Denial of Service Trends Report states that DDoS attack activity increased 85 percent in each of the last two years, with 32 percent of those attacks in the fourth quarter of 2015 targeting IT services, cloud computing, and software-as-a-service companies. In this podcast, CERT researcher Rachel Kartch provides an overview of DDoS attacks and best practices for mitigating and responding to them. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Effective cybersecurity engineering requires the integration of security into the software acquisition and development lifecycle. For engineering to address security effectively, requirements that establish the target goal for security must be in place. Risk management must include identification of possible threats and vulnerabilities within the system, along with the ways to accept or address them. There will always be cyber security risk, but engineers, managers, and organizations must be able to plan for the ways in which a system should avoid as well as recognize, resist, and recover from an attack. In this podcast Nancy Mead and Carol Woody discuss their new book, Cyber Security Engineering: A Practical Approach for Systems and Software Assurance, which introduces a set of seven principles that address the challenges of acquiring, building, deploying, and sustaining software systems to achieve a desired level of confidence for software assurance. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Dynamic network defense (or moving target defense) is based on a simple premise: a moving target is harder to attack than a stationary target. In recent years the government has invested substantially into moving target and adaptive cyber defense. This rapidly growing field has seen recent developments of many new technologies—defenses that range from shuffling of client-to-server assignments to protect against distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, to packet header rewriting, to rebooting servers. As researchers develop new technologies, they need a centralized reference platform where new technologies can be vetted to see where they complement each other and where they do not, as well as a standard against which future technologies can be evaluated. In this podcast, Andrew Mellinger, a senior software developer in the SEI's Emerging Technology Center discusses work to develop a platform to organize dynamic defenses. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Cyber intelligence is the acquisition of information to identify, track, or predict the cyber capabilities and actions of malicious actors to offer courses of action to decision makers charged with protecting organizations. In this podcast, Jared Ettinger of the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center (ETC) talks about the ETC’s latest work in cyber intelligence as well as the Cyber Intelligence Research Consortium, which brings together organizations from a variety of sectors to exchange cyber intelligence ideas, participate in hands-on training activities, and learn about emerging cyber intelligence technologies from experts in the field. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Peter Feiler describes a textual requirement specification language for the Architecture Analysis & Design Language (AADL) called ReqSpec. ReqSpec is based on the draft Requirements Definition and Analysis Language Annex, which defines a meta-model for requirement specification as annotations to AADL models. A set of plug-ins to the Open Source AADL Tool Environment (OSATE) toolset supports the ReqSpec language. Users can follow an architecture-led requirement specification process that uses AADL models to represent the system in its operational context as well as the architecture of the system of interest. ReqSpec can also be used to represent existing stakeholder and system requirement documents. Requirement documents represented in the Requirements Interchange Format can be imported into OSATE to migrate such documents into an architecture-centric virtual integration process. Finally, ReqSpec is an element of an architecture-led, incremental approach to system assurance. In this approach, requirements specifications are complemented with verification plans. When executed, these plans produce evidence that a system implementation satisfies the requirements. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Whether you are a CISO, CISO equivalent, or have another title with organizational cybersecurity responsibilities, the role you play in your organization to protect and sustain the key information and technical assets needed to achieve the mission is critical in today’s landscape of data breaches, nation-state hackers, and increased threats to the business. In this podcast, Darrell Keeling, Vice President of Information Security and HIPAA Security Officer at Parkview Health, discusses the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to become a CISO in today’s fast-paced cybersecurity field. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
To ensure software will function as intended and is free of vulnerabilities (aka software assurance), software engineers must consider security early in the lifecycle, when the system is being designed and architected. Recent research on vulnerabilities supports this claim: Nearly half the weaknesses identified in the Common Weakness Enumeration (CWE) repository have been identified as design weaknesses. These weaknesses are introduced early in the lifecycle and cannot be patched away in later phases. They result from poor (or incomplete) security requirements, system designs, and architecture choices for which security has not been given appropriate priority. Effective use of metrics and methods that apply systematic consideration for security risk can highlight gaps earlier in the lifecycle before the impact is felt and when the cost of addressing these gaps is less. In this podcast, Dr. Carol Woody explores the connection between measurement, methods for software assurance, and security. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
By the close of 2016, annual global IP traffic will pass the zettabyte ([ZB]; 1000 exabytes [EB]) threshold and will reach 2.3 ZBs per year by 2020, according to Cisco's Visual Networking Index. While capturing and evaluating network traffic enables defenders of large-scale organizational networks to generate security alerts and identify intrusions, operators of networks with even comparatively modest size struggle with building a full, comprehensive view of network activity. To make wise security decisions, operators need to understand the mission activity on their network and the threats to that activity (referred to as network situational awareness). In this podcast, Timothy Shimeall discusses approaches for analyzing network security using and going beyond network flow data to gain situational awareness to improve security. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Girish Seshagiri discusses a two-year community college software assurance program that he developed and facilitated with SEI Fellow Nancy Mead at Illinois Community College. The two-year degree program in secure software development, which is based on the SEI’s software assurance curriculum, is the result of a collaboration between Central Illinois Center of Excellence for Secure Software and Illinois Central College. The program, which also incorporates an apprenticeship model, was developed in response to industry needs. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Internet-connected devices—from cars, insulin pumps, and baby monitors to thermostats and coffee makers—are growing in number and complexity. Most of these Internet of Things (IoT) devices weren’t built with connectivity and security in mind, leaving them vulnerable to attacks. In this podcast, CERT researcher Art Manion discusses work that his team is doing with the Department of Homeland Security to examine and secure IoT devices. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The position of SEI Fellow is awarded to people who have made an outstanding contribution to the work of the SEI and from whom the SEI leadership may expect valuable advice for continued success in the institute's mission. Nancy Mead, a principal researcher in the SEI’s CERT Division, was named an SEI Fellow in 2013. This podcast is the first in a series highlighting interviews with SEI Fellows. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Safety-critical software must be analyzed and checked carefully. Each potential error, failure, or defect must be considered and evaluated before you release a new product. For example, if you are producing a quadcopter drone, you would like to know the probability of engine failure to evaluate the system's reliability. Safety analysis is hard. Standards such as ARP4761 mandate several analyses, such as Functional Hazard Assessment and Failure Mode and Effect Analysis. One popular type of safety analysis is Fault Tree Analysis (FTA), which provides a graphical representation of all contributors to a failure (e.g., error events and propagations). In this podcast, Julien Delange discusses the concepts of the FTA and introduce a new tool to design and analyze fault trees. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations “are concerned about the risks associated with information and communications technology (ICT) products and services that may contain potentially malicious functionality, are counterfeit, or are vulnerable due to poor manufacturing and development practices within the ICT supply chain. These risks are associated with the organizations’ decreased visibility into, understanding of, and control over how the technology that they acquire is developed, integrated and deployed, as well as the processes, procedures, and practices used to assure the integrity, security, resilience, and quality of the products and services.” In this podcast, Edna Conway, Chief Security Officer, Global Value Chain and Cisco, and John Haller, a member of the CERT Cyber Assurance team, discuss the global value chain for organizations and critical infrastructures and how this expanded view can be used to improve ICT supply chain management, including risks to the supply chain. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Intelligence preparation for Operational Resilience (IPOR) is a structured framework that decision makers can use to: •identify intelligence needs •consume the information received by intelligence sources •make informed decisions about the organization and courses of action In this podcast, Douglas Gray, a member of the CERT Cyber Risk Management team, discusses how to operationalize intelligence products to build operational resilience of organizational assets and services using IPOR. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In the past decade, the U.S. Air Force has built up great capability with the Distributed Common Ground System (AF DCGS), the Air Force’s primary weapon system for intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, planning, direction, collection, processing, exploitation, analysis, and dissemination. AF DCGS employs a global communications architecture that connects multiple intelligence platforms and sensors. In this podcast, Harry Levinson discusses the SEI’s work with the Air Force to further evolve the AF DCGS system using Agile techniques working in incremental, iterative approaches to deliver more frequent, more manageable deliveries of capability. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Threat modeling, which has been popularized by Microsoft in the last decade, provides vulnerability analysts a means to analyze a system and identify various attack surfaces and use that knowledge to bolster a system against vulnerabilities. In this podcast, Art Manion and Allen Householder of CERT’s vulnerability analysis team, talk about threat modeling and its use in improving security of the Internet of Things. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Due to advances in hardware and software technologies, Department of Defense (DoD) systems today are highly capable and complex. However, they also face increasing scale, computation, and security challenges. Compounding these challenges, DoD systems were historically designed using stove-piped architectures that lock the government into a small number of system integrators, each devising proprietary point solutions that are expensive to develop and sustain over the lifecycle. Although these stove-piped solutions have been problematic (and unsustainable) for years, the budget cuts occurring under sequestration are motivating the DoD to reinvigorate its focus on identifying alternative means to drive down costs, create more affordable acquisition choices, and improve acquisition program performance. A promising approach to meet these goals is open systems architecture (OSA). In this podcast, Don Firesmith discusses how acquisition professionals and system integrators can apply OSA practices to effectively decompose large monolithic business and technical architectures into manageable and modular solutions that can integrate innovation more rapidly and lower total ownership costs. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Safety-critical systems are becoming extremely software-reliant. Software complexity can increase total acquisition costs as much as 16 percent. The Effective Reduction of Avoidable Complexity in Embedded Systems (ERACES) project aims to identify and remove complexity in software models. At the same time, safety-critical development is shifting from traditional programming (e.g., Ada, C) to modeling languages (e.g., Simulink, SCADE). In this podcast, Julien Delange discusses the Effective Reduction of Avoidable Complexity in Embedded Systems (ERACES) project, which aims to identify and remove complexity in software models. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Department of Defense (DoD) must focus on sustaining legacy weapons systems that are no longer in production, but are expected to remain a key component of our defense capability for decades to come. Despite the fact that these legacy systems are no longer in the acquisition phase, software upgrade cycles are needed to refresh their capabilities every 18 to 24 months. In addition, significant modernization can often be made by more extensive, focused software upgrades with relatively modest hardware changes. In this podcast, Mike Phillips discusses effective sustainment engineering efforts in the Army and Air Force, using examples from across its software engineering centers. These examples are tied to SEI research on capability maturity models, agility, and the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) modeling notation. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
We know from existing SEI work on attribute-driven design, Quality Attribute Workshops, and the Architecture Tradeoff Analysis Method that a focus on quality attributes prevents costly rework. Such a long-term perspective, however, can be hard to maintain in a high-tempo, agile delivery model, which is why the SEI continues to recommend an architecture-centric engineering approach, regardless of the software methodology chosen. As part of our work in value-driven incremental delivery, we conducted exploratory interviews with teams in these high-tempo environments to characterize how they managed architectural quality attribute requirements (QARs). These requirements—such as performance, security, and availability—have a profound impact on system architecture and design, yet are often hard to divide, or slice, into the iteration-sized user stories common to iterative and incremental development. This difficulty typically exists because some attributes, such as performance, touch multiple parts of the system. In this podcast, Neil Ernst discusses research on slicing (refining) performance in two production software systems and ratcheting (periodic increase of a specific response measure) of scenario components to allocate QAR work. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Whether Java is more secure than C is a simple question to ask, but a hard question to answer well. When researchers on the CERT Secure Coding Team began writing the SEI CERT Oracle Coding Standard for Java, they thought that Java would require fewer secure coding rules than the SEI CERT C Coding Standard because Java was designed with security in mind. They also assumed that a more secure language would need fewer rules than a less secure one. However, Java has 168 coding rules compared to just 116 for C. Why? Are there problems with our C or Java rules, or are Java programs, on average, just as susceptible to vulnerabilities as C programs? In this podcast, CERT researcher David Svoboda analyzes secure coding rules for both C and Java to determine if they indeed refute the conventional wisdom that Java is more secure than C. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In our studies of many large-scale software systems, we have observed that defective files seldom exist alone. They are usually architecturally connected, and their architectural structures exhibit significant design flaws that propagate bugginess among files. We call these flawed structures the architecture roots, a type of technical debt that incurs high maintenance penalties. Removing the architecture roots of bugginess requires refactoring, but the benefits of refactoring have historically been difficult for architects to quantify or justify. In this podcast, Rick Kazman and Carol Woody discuss an approach to model and analyze software architecture as a set of design rule spaces). Using data extracted from the project’s development artifacts, this approach identifies the files implicated in architecture flaws and suggest refactorings based on removing these flaws. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Building Security In Maturity Model (BSIMM) is the result of a multi-year study of real-world software security initiatives. It is built directly from data observed in 78 software security initiatives from firms in nine market sectors. The best way to use the BSIMM is to compare and contrast your own initiative with the data about what other organizations are doing as described in the model. You can then identify goals and objectives and refer to the BSIMM to determine which additional activities make sense for you.The BSIMM data show that high maturity initiatives are well-rounded—carrying out numerous activities in all 12 of the practices described by the model. The model also describes how mature software security initiatives evolve, change, and improve over time.In this podcast, Gary McGraw, the Chief Technology Officer for Cigital, discusses the latest version of BSIMM and how to take advantage of observed practices from high-performing organizations. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Grady Booch recently delivered a presentation as part of the SEI’s CTO Distinguished Speaker Series where he discussed his perspectives on the biggest challenges for the future of software engineering. During his visit to the SEI, he sat down for an interview with SEI Fellow Nancy Mead for the SEI Podcast Series. Booch will be a keynote speaker at SATURN 2016. Please click the related link below for additional details. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) are increasingly finding that the tried-and-true, traditional information security strategies and functions are no longer adequate when dealing with today’s increasingly expanding and dynamic cyber risk environment. Many opinions and publications express a wide range of functions that a CISO organization should be responsible for governing, managing, and performing. How does a CISO make sense of these functions and select the ones that are most applicable for their business mission, vision, and objectives?In this podcast, Nader Mehravari and Julia Allen, members of the CERT Cyber Risk Management team, discuss an effective approach for defining a CISO team structure and functions for large, diverse organizations based on inputs from CISOs, policies, frameworks, maturity models, standards, codes of practice, and lessons learned from major cybersecurity incidents. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Every day another story arises about a significant breach at a major company or Government agency. Increasingly, cybersecurity is being viewed as a risk management issue by CEOs and boards of directors. So how does corporate America address risk? Insurance. Since, like a natural disaster, a company cannot completely avoid cyber attacks, the next best option is to mitigate the impact these attacks can have. In this podcast, Chip Block, Vice President at Evolver, discusses the growth of the cyber insurance industry and how it is beginning to drive the way that organizations manage risk and invest in technologies. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In their haste to deliver software capabilities, developers sometimes engage in less-than-optimal coding practices. If not addressed, these shortcuts can ultimately yield unexpected rework costs that offset the benefits of rapid delivery. Technical debt conceptualizes the tradeoff between the short-term benefits of rapid delivery and long-term value. Taking shortcuts to expedite the delivery of features in the short term incurs technical debt, analogous to financial debt, that must be paid off later to optimize long-term success. Managing technical debt is an increasingly critical aspect of producing cost-effective, timely, and high-quality software products, especially in projects that apply agile methods. A delicate balance is needed between the desire to release new software features rapidly to satisfy users and the desire to practice sound software engineering that reduces rework. Too often, however, technical debt focuses on coding issues when a broader perspective—one that incorporates software architectural concerns—is needed. In this podcast, Dr. Neil Ernst discusses the findings of a recent field study to assess the state of the practice and current thinking regarding technical debt and guide the development of a technical debt timeline. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Sean Sweeney, Information Security Officer (ISO) for the University of Pittsburgh (Pitt), discusses their use of the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) CSF (Cybersecurity Framework). The University of Pittsburgh is a large, decentralized institution with a diverse population of networks and information types. The challenge of balancing academic freedom with security and protection of research data is put to the test every day. The use of the CSF, created by NIST as a common starting point for improving the cybersecurity of critical infrastructure providers, has proven valuable to help Pitt understand its baseline security posture, prioritize gaps, and set a target profile for improvement. The flexibility of the five NIST CSF categories (Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond, Recover) provide a solid starting point from which to understand the information security practices that are already in place at Pitt and the practices that are needed to improve the overall program. The podcast is based on a presentation available here. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Modern society is deeply and irreversibly dependent on software systems of remarkable scope and complexity in areas that are essential for preserving our way of life. Software assurance is critical to ensuring our confidence in these systems and that they are free from vulnerabilities, function in the intended manner, and provide security capabilities appropriate to the threat environment. In this podcast, Dr. Nancy Mead discusses how, with support from the Department of Homeland Security, SEI researchers developed software assurance curricula and programs for graduate, undergraduate, and community colleges. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
One of the most important and widely discussed trends within the software testing community is shift left testing, which simply means beginning testing as early as practical in the lifecycle. What is less widely known, both inside and outside the testing community, is that testers can employ four fundamentally-different approaches to shift testing to the left. Unfortunately, different people commonly use the generic term shift left to mean different approaches, which can lead to serious misunderstandings. In this post, SEI principal researcher Don Firesmith explains the importance of shift left testing and defines each of these four approaches using variants of the classic V model to illustrate them. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
High performance computing is now central to the federal government and industry as evidenced by the shift from single-core and multi-core or homogeneous central processing units, also known as CPUs, to many core and heterogeneous systems that also include other types of processors like graphics processing units, also known as GPUs.In this podcast, Scott McMillan and Eric Werner of the SEI’s Emerging Technology Center discuss work to create a software library for graph analytics that would take advantage of these more powerful heterogeneous supercomputers to perform graph analytics at larger scales and more quickly, while making them simpler to program. Graph analytics are more complex, and thus, more difficult to program. These algorithms are used in the DoD-mission applications including intelligence analysis, knowledge representation and reasoning in autonomous systems, cyber intelligence and security, routing planning, and logistics optimization. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Dr. Richard Young, a professor with Carnegie Mellon’s Tepper School of Business, teams with Sam Perl, a member of the CERT Division’s Enterprise Threat and Vulnerability Management team, to discuss their research on how expert cybersecurity incident handlers think, learn, and act when faced with an incident. The research study focuses on critical cognitive factors that such experts use to make decisions when faced with a complex incident, including how to deal with critical information that is missing. Study results may be used to enhance the knowledge and skills of less experienced responders. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Peter Feiler discusses a case study that demonstrates how an analytical architecture fault-modeling approach can be combined with confidence arguments to diagnose a time-sensitive design error in a control system and to provide evidence that proposed changes to the system address the problem. The analytical approach, based on the SAE Architecture Analysis and Design Language for its well-defined timing and fault-behavior semantics, demonstrates that such hard-to-test errors can be discovered and corrected early in the lifecycle, thereby reducing rework cost. The case study shows that by combining the analytical approach with confidence maps, we can present a structured argument that system requirements have been met and problems in the design have been addressed adequately—increasing our confidence in the system quality. The case study analyzes an aircraft engine control system that manages fuel flow with a stepper motor. The original design was developed and verified in a commercial model-based development environment without discovering the potential for missed step commanding. During system tests, actual fuel flow did not correspond to the desired fuel flow under certain circumstances. The problem was traced to missed execution of commanded steps due to variation in execution time. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A surprisingly large number of different types of testing exist and are used during the development and operation of software-reliant systems. While most testers, test managers, and other testing stakeholders are quite knowledgeable about a relatively small number of testing types, many people know very little about most of them and are unaware that others even exist. Understanding these different types of testing is important because different types of testing tend to uncover different types of defects and multiple testing types are needed to achieve sufficiently low levels of residual defects. Although not all of these testing types are relevant on all projects, a complete taxonomy can be used to help discover the ones that are appropriate and ensure that no relevant types of testing are accidentally overlooked. Such a taxonomy can also be useful as a way to organize and prioritize one’s study of testing. In this podcast, Donald Firesmith introduces the taxonomy of testing types he created to help testers and testing stakeholders select the appropriate types of testing for their specific needs. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Systems are increasingly software-reliant and interconnected, making design, analysis and evaluation harder than in the past. While new capabilities are welcome, they require more thorough validation. Complexity could mean that design flaws or defects could lead to hazardous conditions that are undiscovered and unresolved. In this podcast, Dr. Sarah Sheard discusses a two-year research project to investigate the nature of complexity, how it manifests in software-reliant systems, such as avionics, how to measure it, and how to tell when too much complexity might lead to safety and certifiability problems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Software is a growing component of modern business- and mission-critical systems. As organizations become more dependent on software, security-related risks to their organizational missions are also increasing. Traditional security-engineering approaches rely on addressing security risks during the operation and maintenance of software-reliant systems. However, the costs required to control security risks increase significantly when organizations wait until systems are deployed to address those risks. It is more cost effective to address software security risks as early in the lifecycle as possible. As a result, researchers from the CERT Division of the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) have started investigating early lifecycle security risk analysis (i.e., during requirements, architecture, and design). In this podcast, CERT researcher Christopher Alberts introduces the Security Engineering Risk Analysis (SERA) Framework, a systematic approach for analyzing complex security risks in software-reliant systems and systems of systems early in the lifecycle. The framework integrates system and software engineering with operational security by requiring engineers to analyze operational security risks as software-reliant systems are acquired and developed. Initial research activities have focused on specifying security requirements for these systems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
For several years, the Software Engineering Institute has researched the viability of Agile software development methods within Department of Defense programs and barriers to the adoption of those methods. In this podcast, SEI researcher Eileen Wrubel discusses how software sustainers leverage Agile methods and avoid barriers to using Agile methods. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Most software systems have some "defects" that are identified by users. Some of these are truly defects in that the requirements were not properly implemented; some are caused by changes made to other systems; still others are requests for enhancement – improvements that would improve the users' experience. These "defects" are generally stored in a database and are worked off in a series of incrementally delivered updates. For most systems, it is not financially feasible to fix all of the concerns in the near term, and indeed some issues may never be addressed. The government program office has an obligation to choose wisely among a set of competing defects to be implemented, especially in a financially constrained environment. In this podcast, Will Hayes and Julie Cohen discuss a generalized technique that could be used with any type of system to assist the program office in addressing and resolving the conflicting views and creating a better value system for defining releases. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As the number of sensors on smart phones continues to grow, these devices can automatically track data from the user's environment, including geolocation, time of day, movement, and other sensor data. Making sense of this data in an ethical manner that respects the privacy of smartphone users is just one of the many challenges faced by researchers. In this podcast, Dr. Anind Dey, director of the Human Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) at CMU, and Dr. Jeff Boleng, principal researcher at the SEI, introduce context-aware computing and discuss a collaboration to help dismounted soldiers using context derived from sensors on them and their mobile devices, to ensure that they have the information and sensor support they need to optimize their mission performance. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As the number of sensors on smart phones continues to grow, these devices can automatically track data from the user's environment, including geolocation, time of day, movement, and other sensor data. Making sense of this data in an ethical manner that respects the privacy of smartphone users is just one of the many challenges faced by researchers. In this podcast, the first in a two-part series, Dr. Anind Dey and Dr. Jeff Boleng introduce context-aware computing and explore other issues related to sensor-fueled data in the internet of things. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Software vulnerabilities are defects or weaknesses in a software system that, if exploited, can lead to compromise of the control of a system or the information it contains. The problem of vulnerabilities in fielded software is pervasive and serious. In 2012, SEI researchers began investigating vulnerabilities reported to the SEI's CERT Division and determined that a large number of significant and pernicious software vulnerabilities likely had their origins early in the software development lifecycle in the requirements and design phases.In this podcast, SEI researchers Mike Konrad and Art Mansion discuss a project that was launched to investigate design-related vulnerabilities and quantify their effects. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the 12th and final podcast in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the 12th principle: at regular intervals, the team reflects on how to become more effective, then tunes and adjusts its behavior accordingly. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
One caveat of outsourcing is that you can outsource business functions, but you cannot outsource the risk and responsibility to a third party. These must be borne by the organization that asks the population to trust they will do the right thing with their data.In this podcast, Matt Butkovic, the Technical Manager of CERT’s Cybersecurity Assurance Team, and John Haller, a member of Matt’s team, discuss approaches for more effectively managing supply chain risks, focusing on risks arising from "external entities that provide, sustain, or operate Information and Communications Technology (ICT) to support your organization." This is sometimes referred to as third party or external dependency risk. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In Department of Defense programs, a system of systems (SoS) is integrated to accomplish a number of missions that involve cooperation among individual systems. Understanding the activities conducted within each system and how they interoperate to accomplish the missions of the SoS is of vital importance. A mission thread is a sequence of end-to-end activities and events, given as a series of steps, that accomplish the execution of one or more capabilities that the SoS supports. However, listing the steps and describing them do not reveal all the important concerns associated with cooperation among the systems to accomplish the mission; understanding the architectural and engineering considerations associated with each mission thread is also essential. In this podcast, Michael Gagliardi introduces the Mission Thread Workshop (MTW), a facilitated, stakeholder-centric workshop whose purpose is to elicit and refine end-to-end quality attribute, capability, and engineering considerations for SoS mission threads. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the 11th in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the 11th principle: the best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
This podcast summarizes the inaugural Measuring What Matters Workshop conducted in November 2014, and the team’s experiences in planning and executing the workshop, and identifying improvements for future offerings. The Measuring What Matters Workshop introduces the Goal-Question-Indicator-Metric (GQIM) approach that enables users to derive meaningful metrics for managing cybersecurity risks from strategic and business objectives. This approach helps ensure that organizational leaders have better information to make decisions, take action, and change behaviors. Katie Stewart, Michelle Valdez, Lisa Young, and Julia Allen, the developers and facilitators of this workshop, are all members of CERT’s Cyber Resilience Management team. Further details about this workshop can be found in our workshop report. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the tenth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the tenth principle: Simplicity—the art of maximizing the amount of work not done—is essential. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Security vulnerabilities are defects that enable an external party to compromise a system. Our research indicates that improving software quality by reducing the number of errors also reduces the number of vulnerabilities and hence improves software security. Some portion of security vulnerabilities (maybe over half of them) are also quality defects. Can quality defect models that predict quality results be applied to security to predict security results? Simple defect models focus on an enumeration of development errors after they have occurred and do not relate directly to operational security vulnerabilities, except when the cause is quality related. In this podcast, Carol Woody and Bill Nichols discuss how a combination of software development and quality techniques can improve software security. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the ninth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the ninth principle: continuous attention to technical excellence and good design enhances Agile. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The goal of any cybersecurity investment is to reduce the potential impact from cyber risk. Initial investments should be in capability development—the implementation of controls to protect and sustain operations that depend on technology. As capability increases, additional capability investments produce diminishing returns—the curve flattens. At that point, investment in cyber insurance becomes an efficient means to further reduce risk.In this podcast, Jim Cebula, the Technical Manager of CERT’s Cybersecurity Risk Management Team, and David White, Chief Knowledge Officer with Axio Global, discuss cyber insurance, its potential role in reducing operational and cybersecurity risk, and how organizations are using it today. We also discuss ongoing CERT research on this topic. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2013, the AADL Standards meeting was held at SEI headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pa. The SEI Podcast Series team was there, and we interviewed several members of the AADL Standards Committee. This podcast is the fourth in a series based on these interviews. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Soldiers in battle or emergency workers responding to a disaster often find themselves in environments with limited computing resources, rapidly-changing mission requirements, high levels of stress, and limited connectivity, which are often referred to as “tactical edge environments.” These types of scenarios make it hard to use mobile software applications that would be of value to soldiers or emergency personnel, including speech and image recognition, natural language processing, and situational awareness, because these computation-intensive tasks take a heavy toll on a mobile device’s battery power and computing resources. Researchers in the Advanced Mobile Systems Initiative at the SEI focus on cyber foraging, which uses discoverable, forward-deployed servers to extend the capabilities of mobile devices by offloading battery-draining computations to these more powerful resources, or for staging data particular to a mission. In this podcast, Grace Lewis discusses five approaches that her team developed and tested for using tactical cloudlets as a strategy for providing infrastructure to support computation offload and data staging at the tactical edge. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Part of a series exploring Agile in the Department of Defense, this podcast addresses key issues that occur when Agile software teams engage with systems engineering functions in the development and acquisition of software-reliant systems. Published acquisition guidance still largely focuses on a system perspective, and fundamental differences exist between systems engineering and software engineering approaches. Those differences are compounded when Agile becomes a part of the mix, rather than adhering to more traditional "waterfall"-based development lifecycles. In this research, the SEI gathered more data from users of Agile methods in the DoD and delved deeper into the existing body of knowledge about Agile and systems engineering before addressing them. In this podcast, Acquisition researchers Eileen Wrubel and Suzanne Miller offer insight into how systems engineers and Agile software engineers can better collaborate when taking advantage of Agile as they deliver incremental mission capability. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Given that up to 70 percent of system errors are introduced during the design phase, stakeholders need a modeling language that will ensure both requirements enforcement during the development process and the correct implementation of these requirements. Previous work demonstrates that using the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) early in the development process not only helps detect design errors before implementation but also supports implementation efforts and produces high-quality code. Previous research has demonstrated how AADL can identify potential design errors and avoid propagating them through the development process. Verified specifications, however, are still implemented manually. This manual process is labor intensive and error prone, and it introduces errors that might break previously verified assumptions and requirements. For these reasons, code production should be automated to preserve system specifications throughout the development process. In this podcast, Julien Delange summarizes different perspectives on research related to code generation from software architecture models. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In September 2014, Alistair Cockburn met with researchers at the SEI headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pa. The SEI Podcast Series team was there as Cockburn sat down with Suzanne Miller to discuss his unique perspective as one of the creators of the Agile manifesto and his viewpoint on the current state of Agile adoption. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the eighth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the eighth principle: Agile processes promotes sustainable development. The sponsors, developers, and users should be able to maintain a constant pace indefinitely. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations of all sizes in both the public and private sectors are increasingly reliant on information and technology assets, supported by people and facility assets, to successfully execute business processes that, in turn, support the delivery of services. Failure of these assets has a direct, negative impact on the business processes they support. This, in turn, can cascade into an inability to deliver services, which ultimately impacts the organizational mission. Given these relationships, the management of operational cybersecurity-related risks to these assets is a key factor in positioning the organization for success.In this podcast, Jim Cebula, the Technical Manager of the CERT Cybersecurity Risk Management Team, discusses a taxonomy that provides organizations with a common language and terminology they can use to discuss, document, and mitigate operational cybersecurity risks. The taxonomy identifies and organizes the sources of operational cyber security risk into four classes: (1) actions of people, (2) systems and technology failures, (3) failed internal processes, and (4) external events. This podcast is based on an SEI technical report and blog post. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As the prevalence of suppliers using Agile methods grows, these professionals supporting the acquisition and maintenance of software-reliant systems are witnessing large portions of the industry moving away from so-called "traditional waterfall" lifecycle processes. The existing infrastructure supporting the work of acquisition professionals has been shaped by the experience of the industry—which up until recently has tended to follow a waterfall process. The industry is finding that the methods geared toward legacy life cycle processes must be realigned with new ways of doing business. In this podcast Will Hayes and Suzanne Miller discuss research intended to aid U. S. Department of Defense acquisition professionals in the use of Agile software development methods. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Ian Gorton describes four general principles that hold for any scalable, big data system. These principles can help architects continually validate major design decisions across development iterations, and hence provide a guide through the complex collection of design trade-offs all big data systems require. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Joseph Elm analyzes differences in systems-engineering activities for defense and non-defense projects and finds differences in both deployment and effectiveness. This research is the result analysis of data collected from the 2011 Systems Engineering (SE) Effectiveness Survey performed by the National Defense Industrial Association Systems Engineering Division, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society, and the SEI. This analysis examined the differences in the deployment and impact of SE activities between defense-domain projects and non-defense projects. The analysis found significant differences in both the deployment of SE in the two domains and the effectiveness of the SE. The report identifies specific process areas where effectiveness in one domain is noticeably higher than in the other. Further research to understand these differences will benefit both domains by enabling them to share best practices. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Many warfighters and first responders operate at what we call "the tactical edge," where users are constrained by limited communication connectivity, storage availability, processing power, and battery life. In these environments, onboard sensors are used to capture data on behalf of mobile applications to perform tasks such as face recognition, speech recognition, natural language translation, and situational awareness. These applications then rely on network interfaces to send the data to nearby servers or the cloud, if local processing resources are inadequate. While software developers have traditionally used native mobile technologies to develop these applications, the approach has some drawbacks, such as limited portability. In contrast, HTML5 has been touted for its portability across mobile device platforms as well an ability to access functionality without having to download and install applications. In this podcast, Grace Lewis describes research aimed at evaluating the feasibility of using HTML5 to develop applications that can meet tactical edge requirements. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the seventh in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense, the two researchers discuss the application of the seventh principle: Working software is the primary measure of progress. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2013, the AADL Standards meeting was held at SEI headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pa. The SEI Podcast Series team was there, and we interviewed several members of the AADL Standards Committee. This podcast is the third in a series based on these interviews. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) service depends on information technology (IT)—computer systems and networks—to convey potentially life-saving information to the public in a timely manner. However, like other cyber-enabled services, the WEA service is susceptible to risks that may enable an attacker to disseminate unauthorized alerts or to delay, modify, or destroy valid alerts. Successful attacks on the alerting process may result in property destruction, financial loss, infrastructure disruption, injury, or death. Such attacks may damage WEA credibility to the extent that users ignore future alerts or disable alerting on their mobile devices. In this podcast, Carol Woody and Christopher Alberts discuss guidelines that they developed to ensure that the WEA service remains robust and resilient against cyber attacks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Julien Delange discusses two extensions to the Architecture Analysis and Design Language: the behavior annex and the error-model annex. The behavior annex represents the functional logic of AADL components and interacts with the other system elements. SEI researchers are currently participating in the ongoing improvements of this extension of the AADL by connecting it to other analysis tools. The error model annex augments the architecture description by specifying safety concerns of the system (error propagation, error behavior, etc.). The language is the foundation of new analysis tools that provide qualitative and quantitative assessment of system safety and reliability. SEI researches have defined new tools that analyze the model and produces safety validation documents, such as the one required by safety standard such as the SAE ARP4761. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the sixth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the sixth principle,The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Every day, major anti-virus companies and research organizations are inundated with new malware samples. Although estimates vary, approximately 150,000 new malware strains are released each day. Not enough manpower exists to manually address the volume of new malware samples that arrive daily in analysts' queues. Malware analysts need an approach that allows them to sort samples in a fundamental way so they can assign priority to the most malicious binary files. In this podcast, Jose Morales, a malicious software researcher with the CERT Division, discusses an approach for prioritizing malware samples, helping analysts to identify the most destructive malware to examine first, based on the binary file's execution behavior and its potential impact. Related Training Malware Analysis Apprenticeship Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In the acquisition of a software-intensive system, the relationship between the software architecture and the acquisition strategy is typically not examined. Although software is increasingly important to the success of government programs, there is often little consideration given to its impact on early key program decisions. The Carnegie Mellon University Software Engineering Institute (SEI) is conducting a multi-phase research initiative aimed at answering the question: is the probability of a program's success improved through deliberately producing a program acquisition strategy and software architecture that are mutually constrained and aligned? Moreover, can we develop a method that helps government program offices produce such alignment? In this podcast, Patrick Place describes research aimed at determining how acquisition quality attributes can be expressed and used to facilitate alignment among the software architecture and acquisition strategy. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Trust is a key factor in the effectiveness of the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) service. Alert originators at emergency management agencies must trust WEA to deliver alerts to the public in an accurate and timely manner. The public must also trust the WEA service before they will act on the alerts that they receive. Managing trust in WEA is a responsibility shared among many stakeholders who are engaged with WEA. In this podcast, Robert Ellison and Carol Woody discuss research aimed at developing recommendations for alert originators, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, commercial mobile service providers, and suppliers of message-generation software that would enhance both alert originators' trust in the WEA service and the public's trust in the alerts that they receive. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The importance of verification and validation (especially testing) is a major reason that the traditional waterfall development cycle underwent a minor modification to create the V model that links early development activities to their corresponding later testing activities. In this podcast, Don Firesmith introduces three variants on the V model of system or software development that make it more useful to testers, quality engineers, and other stakeholders interested in the use of testing as a verification and validation method. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The Personal Software Process promotes the use of careful procedures during all stages of development with the aim of increasing an individual's productivity and producing high quality final products. Formal methods use the same methodological strategy as the PSP: emphasizing care in development procedures as opposed to relying on testing and debugging. They also establish the radical requirement of proving mathematically that the programs produced satisfy their specifications. Design by Contract is a technique for designing components of a software system by establishing their conditions of use and behavioral requirements in a formal language. When appropriate techniques and tools are incorporated to prove that the components satisfy the established requirements, the method is called Verified Design by Contract (VDbC). In this podcast, Bill Nichols discusses a proposal for integrating VDbC into PSP to reduce the number of defects present at the unit-esting phase, while preserving or improving productivity. The resulting adaptation of the PSP, called PSPVDC, incorporates new phases, modifies others, and adds new scripts and checklists to the infrastructure. Specifically, the phases of formal specification, formal specification review, formal specification compile, test case construct, pseudo code, pseudo code review, and proof are added. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Technical professionals are often called on to research, recommend, implement, and execute IT risk assessment and analysis processes. These processes provide important data used by management to responsibly grow and protect the business through good decision making for mitigating, accepting, transferring, or avoiding risk. These decisions must account for IT risks caused by emerging threats to the enterprise and vulnerabilities in the people, processes and technologies required for digital business. Which method you choose for IT risk assessment and risk analysis is far less important than ensuring that the selected methodology is operationalized and a good fit for the corporate culture. The selected approach must be able to produce output that is meaningful to management, and supporting processes must account for assumptions, documentation, and potential gaming of the system. Tools should be leveraged, where possible, to ease method adoption. In this podcast, Ben Tomhave and Erik Heidt, research directors with Gartner Technical Professionals, discuss methods for IT risk assessment and analysis and comparison factors for selecting the methods that are the best fit for your organization. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2013, the AADL Standards meeting was held at SEI headquarters in Pittsburgh, PA. The SEI Podcast Series team was there, and we interviewed several members of the AADL Standards Committee. This podcast is the second in a series based on those interviews. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The SEI has seen increased interest and adoption of OSS products across the federal government, including the Department of Defense, the intelligence community, and the Department of Homeland Security. The catalyst for this increase has been innovators in government seeking creative solutions to rapidly field urgently needed technologies. While the rise of OSS adoption signals a new approach for government t acquirers, it is not without risks that, it is not without risks that must be acknowledged and addressed, particularly given current certification and accreditation (C&A) techniques. In this podcast, Kate Ambrose Sereno and Naomi Anderson discuss research aimed at developing adoptable, evidence-based, data-driven approaches to evaluating (open source) software. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The process of designing and analyzing software architectures is complex. Architectural design is a minimally constrained search through a vast multi-dimensional space of possibilities. The end result is that architects are seldom confident that they have done the job optimally, or even satisfactorily. Over the past two decades, practitioners and researchers have used architectural patterns to expedite sound software design. Architectural patterns are prepackaged chunks of design that provide proven structural solutions for achieving particular software system quality attributes, such as scalability or modifiability. While use of patterns has simplified the architectural design process somewhat, key challenges remain. In this podcast, Rick Kazman discusses these challenges and a solution he has developed for achieving system security qualities through use of patterns. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
ES-C2M2 helps improve the operational resilience of the U.S. power grid. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the fifth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of Agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the fifth principle, Build projects around motivated individuals. Give them the environment and support they need, and trust them to get the job done. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
From the braking system in automobiles to the software that controls aircraft, safety-critical systems are ubiquitous. Showing that such systems meet their safety requirements has become a critical area of work for software and systems engineers. The SEI is addressing this issue with a significant research program into assurance cases. In this podcast, the first in a series on assurance cases and confidence, Charles Weinstock introduces the concept of assurance cases and discusses how they can be used to assure that complex software-based systems meet certain kinds of requirements such as safety, security, and reliability. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
An essential element of secure coding in the C programming language is a set of well-documented and enforceable coding rules. The rules specified in this Technical Specification apply to analyzers, including static analysis tools, and C language compiler vendors that wish to diagnose insecure code beyond the requirements of the language standard. All rules are meant to be enforceable by static analysis. The application of static analysis to security has been done in an ad hoc manner by different vendors, resulting in nonuniform coverage of significant security issues. This specification enumerates secure coding rules and requires analysis engines to diagnose violations of these rules as a matter of conformance to this specification. In this podcast, Robert Seacord, the leader of CERT's Secure Coding Initiative, discusses the 7-year journey resulting in the selection of 46 coding rules, derived from the CERT C Secure Coding Standard, for this new technical specification. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2013, the AADL Standards meeting was held at SEI headquarters in Pittsburgh, Pa. The SEI Podcast Series team was there, and we interviewed several members of the AADL Standards Committee. This podcast, with Peter Feiler and Etienne Borde of Télécom Paris Tech, is the first in a series based on these interviews. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Tim Chick and Gene Miluk discuss methodology and outputs of the Checkpoint Diagnostic, a tool that provides organizations with actionable performance related information and analysis closely linked to business value. The Checkpoint Diagnostic utilizes process models, data mapping, and quantitative analytics to provide organizations with qualitative process baselines, quantitative performance baselines, benchmark performance comparison, and a prioritized listing of improvement opportunities. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Ian Gorton and John Klein discuss big data and the challenges it presents for software engineers. With help from fellow SEI researchers, the two have developed a lightweight risk reduction approach to help software engineers manage the challenges of big data. Called Lightweight Evaluation and Architecture Prototyping (for Big Data), the approach is based on principles drawn from proven architecture and technology analysis and evaluation techniques to help the Department of Defense (DoD) and other enterprises including avionics, communications, and healthcare develop and evolve systems to manage big data. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) conducts a no-cost, voluntary Cyber Resilience Review (CRR) to evaluate and enhance cybersecurity capacities and capabilities within all 18 Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources (CIKR) Sectors, as well as State, Local, Tribal, and Territorial (SLTT) governments. The goal of the CRR is to develop an understanding of an organization’s operational resilience and ability to manage cyber risk to its critical services and assets during normal operations and during times of operational stress and crises. In this podcast, Kevin Dillon, Branch Chief for Stakeholder Risk Assessment and Mitigation with DHS and Matthew Butkovic, the CERT Division’s Technical Portfolio Manager for Infrastructure Resilience, discuss the DHS Cyber Resilience Review and how it is helping critical infrastructure owners and operators improve their operational resilience and security. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast Soumya Simanta describes research aimed at creating the Edge Mission-Oriented Tactical App Generator (eMontage), a software prototype that allows warfighters and first responders to rapidly integrate or mash geo-tagged situational awareness data from multiple remote data sources. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the fourth in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the fourth principle, "Business people and developers must work together daily throughout the project." Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Eric Werner discusses research that he and several of his colleagues are conducting to help software developers create systems for the many-core central processing units in massively parallel computing environments. Eric and his team are creating a software library that can exploit the heterogeneous parallel computers of the future and allow developers to create systems that are more efficient at computation and power consumption. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Bill Novak talks about his work with acquisition archetypes and how they can be used to help government programs avoid problems in software development and systems acquisition. Acquisition archetypes are developed based on experiences with actual programs, and they use concepts from systems thinking to characterize and analyze dynamics. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, James Edmondson discusses his research on autonomous systems, specifically robotic systems and autonomous systems for robotic systems. In particular, his research focuses on partial autonomy with an aim of complementing human users and extending their reach and capabilities in mission- critical environments. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In late June 2013, a team of SEI researchers attended a four-day music festival at the invitation of Adam Miller, director of the Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, Emergency Management Agency. The festival typically draws close to 100,000 concert goers to a rural farm in Pennsylvania that lacks significant infrastructure and is accessible only by a two-lane highway. Miller is charged with ensuring the public safety, so it seemed like a good match to partner with researchers from the SEI's Advanced Mobile Systems Team, which supports emergency responders and soldiers in the field who work in situations with limited computer resources, poor connections with networks, and highly diverse missions. This podcast highlights an interview that Bill Pollak, communication and transition manager in the SEI Software Solutions Division, conducted with Miller. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In recent years, rapid evolutions have occurred in technology and its application in most market sectors, leading to the introduction of many new systems, business processes, markets, and enterprise integration approaches. How do you manage the interactions of systems and processes that are continually evolving? Just as important, how can you tell if you are doing a good job of managing these changes, as well as monitoring your progress on an ongoing basis? And how do poor processes impact interoperability, safety, reliability, efficiency, and effectiveness? Maturity models can help you answer these questions by providing a benchmark to use when assessing how a set of security practices has evolved.  In this podcast, Rich Caralli, the technical director of CERT's Cyber Enterprise and Workforce Management Directorate, discusses maturity models and how they are being used to improve cybersecurity. He describes their key concepts, definitions, and principles and how these can and have been applied to a wide range of disciplines and market sectors. Related Courses Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the third in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the third principle, "Deliver working software frequently, from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, with a preference to the shorter timescale." Listen on Apple Podcasts.
"Release early, release often" to significantly improve software performance, stability, and security using a DevOps approach. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Modern mobile devices create new opportunities to interact with their surrounding environment, but their computational power and battery capacity is limited. Code offloading to external servers located in clouds or data centers can help overcome these limitations. However, in hostile environments it is not possible to guarantee reliable networks. Consequently, stable cloud access is not available. Cyber foraging is a technique for offloading resource-intensive tasks from mobile devices to resource-rich surrogate machines in close wireless proximity. One type of surrogate machine is a cloudlet—a generic server that runs one or more virtual machines (VMs) located in single-hop distance to the mobile device. Cloudlet-based cyber foraging can compensate for missing cloud access in hostile environments. One strategy for cloudlet provisioning is VM synthesis. Unfortunately, this method is time consuming and battery draining because it requires large file transfers. In this podcast, researcher Grace Lewis discusses application virtualization as a more lightweight alternative to VM synthesis for cloudlet provisioning. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST) reports that inadequate testing methods and tools annually cost the U.S. economy between $22.2 billion and $59.5 billion, with roughly half of these costs borne by software developers in the form of extra testing and half by software users in the form of failure avoidance and mitigation efforts. The same study notes that between 25 percent and 90 percent of software development budgets are often spent on testing. In this episode, SEI researcher Don Firesmith discusses problems that commonly occur during testing as well as his development of a framework that lists potential symptoms by which each can be recognized, potential negative consequences, and potential causes, and makes recommendations for preventing them or mitigating their effects. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, SEI researcher Bill Novak discusses joint programs and social dilemmas, which have become increasingly common in defense acquisition, and the ways in joint program outcomes can be affected by their underlying structure. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the second in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the second principle, "Welcome changing requirements, even late in development. Agile processes harness change for the customer's competitive advantage." Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Four experience reports demonstrate how the CERT Resilience Management Model can be applied to manage complex and diverse operational risks. Related Courses Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) Users Group Workshop Series Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Peter Feiler discusses his recent work to improve the quality of software-reliant systems through an approach known as the Reliability Validation and Improvement Framework. The purpose of the framework is to facilitate early defect discovery and incremental end-to-end validation. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A common language is essential to develop a shared understanding to better analyze malicious code. Related Course Malware Analysis Apprenticeship Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Joe Elm discusses the results of a recent technical report, The Business Case for Systems Engineering, which establishes clear links between the application of systems engineering (SE) best practices to projects and programs and the performance of those projects and programs. The report clearly shows that projects that do more SE perform better in terms of meeting budgets, schedules, and technical requirements. The survey population consisted of projects and programs executed by system developers reached through the National Defense Industrial Association Systems Engineering Division, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society, and the International Council on Systems Engineering. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, the first in a series by Suzanne Miller and Mary Ann Lapham exploring the application of agile principles in the Department of Defense (DoD), the two researchers discuss the application of the first principle, "Our highest priority is to satisfy the customer through early and continuous delivery of valuable software." Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Analysis work by the SEI on data collected from more than 100 independent technical assessments (ITAs) of software-reliant acquisition programs has produced insights into some of the most common ways that programs encounter difficulties. In this episode, Bill Novak and Andy Moore describe a recent technical report, The Evolution of a Science Project, which is based on these insights, and intends to mitigate the effects of both misaligned acquisition program organizational incentives, and adverse software-reliant acquisition structural dynamics, by improving acquisition staff decision-making. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Ensuring the security of personal mobile devices that have access to enterprise networks requires action from employers and users. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Peter Feiler, primary author of the Architecture Analysis & Design Language (AADL) standard, discusses the latest changes to the standard, the second version of which was released in January 2009. First published in 2004 by SAE International, AADL is a modeling notation that employs both a textual and graphical representation to provide modeling concepts to describe the runtime architecture of application systems in terms of concurrent tasks, their interactions, and their mapping onto an execution platform. Development organizations use AADL to conduct lightweight, rigorous, yet comparatively inexpensive analyses of critical real-time factors such as performance, dependability, security, and data integrity. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In 2012, representatives from the government approached the SEI Innovation Center about conducting research to assess the state of the practice of cyber intelligence. The overall intent is to expose industry to the best practices in capabilities and methodologies developed by the government, and for the government to learn from the process efficiencies and tools used in industry. In areas where both the government and industry are experiencing challenges, the SEI can leverage its expertise to develop and prototype innovative technologies and processes that can benefit all participants in the program. In this podcast, Troy Townsend and Jay McAllister discuss their findings with Suzanne Miller, a researcher at the SEI. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
371 cases of insider attacks lead to 4 new and 15 updated best practices for mitigating insider threat. Related Course Insider Threat Workshop Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Michael Bandor discusses technology readiness assessments, which the Department of Defense defines as a formal, systematic, metrics-based process and accompanying report that assess the maturity of critical hardware and software technologies to be used in systems. In a discussion with fellow researcher Suzanne Miller, Bandor discusses the latest developments with TRAs and his experiences. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations that use the cloud want the ability to easily move workloads and data from one cloud provider to another or between private and public clouds. A common tactic for enabling interoperability is the use of open standards, and many cloud standardization projects are developing standards for the cloud. In this podcast, Grace Lewis discusses her latest research exploring the role of standards in cloud-computing interoperability, which covers cloud-computing basics, standard-related efforts, cloud-interoperability use cases, and provides some recommendations for moving forward with cloud-computing adoption regardless of the maturity of standards for the cloud. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Governments and markets are calling for the integration of plans for and responses to disruptive events. Related Courses Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) Users Group Workshop Series Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Julien Delange and Peter Feiler discuss the latest developments with the Architecture Analysis and Design Language (AADL) standard. First published in 2004 by SAE International, AADL is a modeling notation that employs both a textual and graphical representation. AADL provides modeling concepts to describe the runtime architecture of application systems in terms of concurrent tasks, their interactions, and their mapping onto an execution platform. Development organizations use AADL to conduct lightweight, rigorous, yet comparatively inexpensive analyses of critical real-time factors such as performance, dependability, security, and data integrity. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In today's fast-paced, global economy, industry and government customers demand innovation coupled with the ability to adapt products and systems to rapidly changing needs. At the same time, the time frame for developing software continues to shorten. As a result, agile software development processes like Scrum and Extreme Programming, with their emphasis on releasing new software capabilities rapidly, are increasing in popularity beyond small teams and individual projects. In this episode, Tim Chick, a senior member of the technical staff in the Team Software Process (TSP) initiative, discusses the fundamentals of agile, specifically what it means for an organization to be agile and provides three criteria for organizations seeking to implement agile. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Whether soldiers are on the battlefield or providing humanitarian relief effort, they need to capture and process a wide range of text, image, and map-based information. To support soldiers in this effort, the Department of Defense is beginning to equip soldiers with smartphones to allow them to manage that vast array and amount of information they encounter while in the field. Whether the information gets correctly conveyed up the chain of command depends, in part, on the soldier's ability to capture accurate data while in the field. In this episode, Ed Morris describes research to create a software application for smartphones that allows soldier end-users to program their smartphones to provide an interface tailored to the information they need for a specific mission. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Today's high-risk, global, fast, and very public business environment demands a more integrated approach to not be surprised by disruptive events. Related Courses Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) Users Group Workshop Series Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A common misconception is that developers using a service-oriented architecture can achieve system qualities such as interoperability and modifiability by simply integrating a set of vendor products that provide an infrastructure. Developers often believe they may then use this infrastructure to expose a set of reusable services to build systems. In reality, developers need to make many architectural decisions. In this episode, Grace Lewis discusses general guidelines for architecting service-oriented systems, how common service-oriented system components support these principles, and the effect these principles and their implementation have on system quality attributes. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this podcast, Bill discusses the development of the long-term, technical strategic plan of the SEI to advance the practice of software engineering for the Department of Defense (DoD) through research and technology transition involving the DoD, federal agencies, industry, and academia. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
By law, major defense acquisition programs are now required to prepare cost estimates earlier in the acquisition lifecycle, including pre-Milestone A, well before concrete technical information is available on the program being developed. Estimates are therefore often based on a desired capability-or even on an abstract concept-rather than a concrete technical solution plan to achieve the desired capability. Hence the role and modeling of assumptions becomes more challenging. In today's podcast episode, Jim McCurley and Robert Stoddard discuss a new method developed by the SEI's Software Engineering Measurement and Analysis (SEMA) team, Quantifying Uncertainty in Early Lifecycle Cost Estimation (QUELCE). QUELCE is a method for improving pre-Milestone A software cost estimates through research designed to improve judgment regarding uncertainty in key assumptions (called "program change drivers"), the relationships among the program change drivers, and their impact on cost. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A network profile can help identify unintended points of entry, misconfigurations, and other weaknesses that may be visible to attackers. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The SEI recently worked with Bursatec to create a reliable and fast new trading system for Groupo Bolsa Mexicana de Valores, the Mexican Stock Exchange. This project combined elements of the SEI's Architecture Centric Engineering (ACE) method, which requires effective use of software architecture to guide system development, with its Team Software Process (TSP), which is a team-centric approach to developing software that enables organizations to better plan and measure their work. In this episode, Felix Bachmann and James McHale discuss their work on the project. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations rely on valid data to make informed decisions. When data integrity is compromised, the veracity of the decision-making process is likewise threatened. In this episode, Dave Zubrow discusses the importance of data quality and research that his team is undertaking in this area. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Deploy vulnerability exploit prevention and mitigation techniques to thwart attacks and manage the arms race. Related Course Malware Analysis Apprenticeship Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In this episode, Novak discusses misaligned incentives, misaligned people incentives in software acquisition programs, and how the wrong incentives can undermine acquisition programs and produce poor outcomes. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Typically, people who believe themselves to be Agile, believe that developers realize the best results when they focus on empowered teams, collaboration with stakeholders, avoiding unnecessary work, and receiving frequent feedback. Agilests hate the term "process" because they use the word somewhat differently than we do. The word "process," however, can be defined as something done repeatedly, with some discipline, and to achieve an end. In this podcast, Bill Nichols discusses how a disciplined process enables and enhances agility. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The SEI is focused on reducing the DoD information technology (IT) development cycle currently as long as 81 months to short, incremental approaches that yield results more quickly. One complicating factor is that DoD acquisition programs (like other highly-regulated commercial environments) have a prescribed vision of how IT systems are developed. This podcast explores the SEI's research and work to assist the DoD in Agile acquisition. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Managing technical debt, which refers to the rework and degraded quality resulting from overly hasty delivery of software capabilities to users, is an increasingly critical aspect of producing cost-effective, timely, and high-quality software products. A delicate balance is needed between the desire to release new software capabilities rapidly to satisfy users and the desire to practice sound software engineering that reduces rework. In this podcast, Ipek Ozkaya discusses the SEI's research on the strategic management of technical debt, which involves decisions made to defer necessary work during the planning or execution of a software project. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Soldiers can use handheld mobile computing devices (aka smart-phones) to help with various tasks, such as speech and image recognition, natural language processing, decision making and mission planning. There are challenges to achieving these capabilities such as unreliable networks and bandwidth, lack of computational power, and the toll that computation-intensive tasks take on battery power. In this episode, Grace discusses research that she is leading to overcome these challenges by using cloudlets, which are localized, lightweight servers running one or more virtual machines on which soldiers can offload expensive computations from their handheld mobile devices, thereby providing greater processing capacity and helping conserve battery power. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
CERT-RMM can be used to establish and meet resilience requirements for a wide range and diverse set of business objectives. Related Courses Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) Users Group Workshop Series Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Implementing CERT-RMM requires well-defined improvement objectives, sponsorship, proper scoping and diagnosis, and defined processes and measures. Related Courses: Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) Users Group Workshop Series Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Security controls, including those for insider threat, are the safeguards necessary to protect information and information systems. Related Course Insider Threat Workshop Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Implementing secure coding standards to reduce the number of vulnerabilities that can escape into operational systems is a sound business decision. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Protecting the internet and its users against cyber attacks requires a significant increase in the number of skilled cyber warriors. Related Courses Information Security for Technical Staff Fundamentals of Incident Handling Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Electronic health records bring many benefits along with security and privacy challenges. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Measures of operational resilience should answer key questions, inform decisions, and affect behavior. Related Course Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Use of Domain Name System security extensions can help prevent website hijacking attacks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Depending on the service model, cloud providers and customers can monitor and implement controls to better protect their sensitive information. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Analyzing malware is essential to assess the damage and reduce the impact associated with ongoing infection. Related Course Malware Analysis Apprenticeship Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Over 100 electric power utilities are accelerating their transformation to the smart grid by using the Smart Grid Maturity Model. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders must address risk at the enterprise, business process, and system levels to effectively protect against today's and tomorrow's threats. Related Courses Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Approach Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Scenario-based exercises help organizations, governments, and nations prepare for, identify, and mitigate cyber risks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Technical controls may be effective in helping prevent, detect, and respond to insider crimes. Related Course Insider Threat Workshop Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Use the CERT Resilience Management Model (CERT-RMM) to help ensure that critical assets and services perform as expected in the face of stress and disruption. Related Course Introduction to the CERT Resilience Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Government agencies and private industry must build effective partnerships to secure national critical infrastructures. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Knowledge about software assurance is essential to ensure that complex systems function as intended. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations can benchmark their software security practices against 109 observed activities from 30 organizations. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Internet-connected mobile devices are becoming increasingly attractive targets Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A national CSIRT is essential for protecting national and economic security, and ensuring the continuity of government agencies and critical infrastructures. Related Courses Creating a Computer Security Incident Response Team Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Securing systems that control physical switches, valves, pumps, meters, and manufacturing lines as these systems connect to the internet is critical for service continuity. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
To help identify and eliminate security vulnerabilities, subject all software that you build and buy to fuzz testing. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organized criminals recruit unsuspecting intermediaries to help steal funds from small businesses. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Being able to respond effectively when faced with a disruptive event requires that staff members learn to become more resilient. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
CISOs must leave no room for anyone to deny that they understand what is expected of them when developing secure software. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Students learn how to combine multiple facets of digital forensics and draw conclusions to support full-scale investigations. Related Training Advanced Incident Handling Advanced Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The SGMM provides a roadmap to guide an organization's transformation to the smart grid. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Being able to effectively respond to e-discovery requests depends on well-defined, enacted policies, procedures, and processes. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Addressing privacy during software development is just as important as addressing security. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Network defenders and business leaders can use NetSA measures and evidence to better protect their networks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Providing critical services during times of stress depends on documented, tested business continuity plans. Related Course Introduction to CERT Resiliency Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A defined, managed process for third party relationships is essential, particularly when business is disrupted. Related Course Introduction to CERT Resiliency Management Model Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The smart grid is the use of digital technology to modernize the power grid, which comes with some new privacy and security challenges. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Electronic health records (EHRs) are possibly the most complicated area of IT today, more difficult than defense. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Two hundred and eighty-two cases of actual insider attacks suggest 16 best practices for preventing and detecting insider threat. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders need new approaches to address multi-enterprise, systems of systems risks across the life cycle and supply chain. Related Courses Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Practical Risk Management: Framework and Methods Listen on Apple Podcasts.
When considering cloud services, business leaders need to weigh the economic benefits against the security and privacy risks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders need to take action to better mitigate sophisticated social engineering attacks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Now may be the time to examine our responsibilities when developing software with known, preventable errors - along with some possible consequences. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Capitalizing on the cultural norms of the Net Generation is essential when developing security awareness programs. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Observed practice, represented as a maturity model, can serve as a basis for developing more secure software. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Requiring secure coding practices when building or buying software can dramatically reduce vulnerabilities. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Making security strategic to business innovation involves seven strategies and calculating risk-reward based on risk appetite. Related Courses Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Approach Introduction to the CERT Resiliency Engineering Framework Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Teams are better prepared to respond to incidents if realistic, hands-on training is part of their normal routine. Related Courses Advanced Incident Handling Advanced Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Standard, compliance, and process are more effective than risk management for ensuring an adequate level of information and software security. Related Course Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Approach Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Rich Pethia reflects on CERT's 20-year history and discusses how he is positioning the program to tackle future IT and security challenges. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Climate change requires new strategies for dealing with traditional IT and information security risks. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Virtual training environments can deliver high quality content to security professionals on-demand, anywhere, anytime. Related Courses Managing Enterprise Information Security Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Responding to an e-discovery request involves many of the same steps and roles as responding to a security incident. Related Course Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A sustainable security program is based on business-aligned strategy, policy, awareness, implementation, monitoring, and remediation. Related Course Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
When considering whether to conduct business in online, virtual communities, business leaders need to evaluate risks and opportunities. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Integrating security into university curricula is one of the key solutions to developing more secure software. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
OCTAVE® Allegro provides a streamlined assessment method that focuses on risks to information used by critical business services. Related Course OCTAVE Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Well-defined metrics are essential to determine which security practices are worth the investment. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Software security is accomplished by thinking like an attacker and integrating security practices into your software development lifecycle. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Protecting critical infrastructures and the information they use are essential for preserving our way of life. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Automation, innovation, reaction, and expansion are the foundation for obtaining meaningful network traffic intelligence in today's extended enterprise. Related Courses Information Security for Technical Staff Advanced Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Determining which security vulnerabilities to address should be based on the importance of the information asset. Related Course Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
During requirements engineering, software engineers need to think deeply about (and document) how software should behave when under attack. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Targeted, innovative communications and a robust life cycle are keys for security policy success. Related Course Managing Enterprise Information Security Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Managing software that is developed by an outside organization can be more challenging than building it yourself. Related Course Software Acquisiton Survival Skills Course Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Software security is about building better, more defect-free software to reduce vulnerabilities that are targeted by attackers. Related Course Secure Coding in C and C++ Listen on Apple Podcasts.
High performing organizations effectively integrate information security controls into mainstream IT operational processes. Related Course Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Helping your staff learn how to identify social engineering attempts is the first step in thwarting them. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Benchmark results can be used to compare with peers, drive performance, and help determine how much security is enough. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Aligning with business objectives, integrating with enterprise risks, and collaborating with stakeholders are key to ensuring information privacy. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A sound security metrics program is grounded in selecting data that is relevant to consumers and collecting it from repeatable processes. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Significant insider threat vulnerabilities can be introduced (and mitigated) during all phases of the software development life cycle. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders need to understand the risks to their organizations caused by the proliferation of botnets. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Selecting and reporting meaningful security metrics depend on picking topics of great interest, defining the business context, and having access to sound data. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Peer-to-peer networks are being used today to unintentionally disclose government, commercial, and personal information. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Directors and senior executives are personally accountable for protecting information entrusted to their care. Related Course Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Internal Audit can serve a key role in putting an effective information security program in place, and keeping it there. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Information security degree programs are proliferating, but what do they really offer business leaders who are seeking knowledgeable employees? Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Information security risk assessment, performed in concert with operational risk management, can contribute to compliance as an outcome. Related Course Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Approach Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders can play a key role in computer forensics by establishing strong policies and proactively testing to ensure those policies work in tough situations. Related Training Computer Forensics for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A business resilience argument can bridge the communication gap that often exists between information security officers and business leaders. Related Course Introduction to the CERT Resiliency Engineering Framework Listen on Apple Podcasts.
By taking a holistic view of business resilience - similar in many ways to classical engineering - business leaders can help their organizations stand up to known and unknown threats. Related Course Introduction to the CERT Resiliency Engineering Framework Listen on Apple Podcasts.
It's easy to think of security as a collection of technologies and tools - but people are the real key to any security effort. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Given that you can't secure everything, managing security risk to a "commercially reasonable degree" can lead to the best possible solution. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders can use national CSIRTs (Computer Security Incident Response Teams) as a key resource when dealing with incidents with a national or worldwide scope. Related Courses Creating a Computer Security Incident Response Team Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams Fundamentals of Incident Handling Advanced Incident Handling for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Information security costs can be significantly reduced by enforcing standard configurations for widely deployed systems. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Security is not an option - but it may be time to start viewing it as a business enabler, rather than just a cost of doing business. Related Courses Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders can use international standards to create a business- and risk-based information security program. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Enterprise security governance is not just a vague idea - it can be achieved by implementing a defined, repeatable process with specific activities. Related Courses Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Deploying common solutions for physical and IT security is a cost-effective way to reduce risk and save money. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Organizations occasionally may need to redefine their IT infrastructures - but to succeed, they must be prepared to handle tricky situations. Related Courses Information Security for Technical Staff Advanced Information Security for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
As the legal compliance landscape grows increasingly complex, de-identification can help organizations share data more securely. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders need to ensure that their organizations can keep critical business processes and services up and running in the face of the unexpected. Related Course Introduction to the CERT Resiliency Engineering Framework Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Computer forensics is often overlooked when planning an incident response strategy; however, it is a critical part of incident response, and business leaders need to understand how to tackle it. Related Courses Computer Forensics for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Incident management is not just about technical response. It is a cross-enterprise effort that requires good communication and informed risk management. Related Courses Creating a Computer Security Incident Response Team Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams Fundamentals of Incident Handling Advanced Incident Handling for Technical Staff Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders, including legal counsel, need to understand how to tackle complex security issues for a global enterprise. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
System administrators increasingly need business savvy in addition to technical skills, and IT training courses must try to keep pace with this trend. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business leaders need to be prepared to communicate with the media and their staff during high-profile security incident or crisis. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Analysis tools are needed for assessing complex organizational and technological issues that are well beyond traditional approaches. Related Courses Assessing Information Security Risk Using the OCTAVE Approach Listen on Apple Podcasts.
A trend toward more and more data disclosure, as seen in online social networks, may be causing users to become desensitized to privacy breaches in general. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Practical specifications and guidelines now exist that define necessary knowledge, skills, and competencies for staff members in a range of security positions - from practitioners to managers. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Business models are evolving. This has challenging implications as security threats become more covert and technologies facilitate information migration. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Defense-in-Depth is one path toward enterprise resilience - the ability to withstand threats and failures. The foundational aspects of compliance management and risk management serve as stepping-stones to and supports for other, more technical aspects. Related Course Managing Enterprise Information Security: A Practical Approach for Achieving Defense-in-Depth Listen on Apple Podcasts.
The threat of attack from insiders is real and substantial. Insiders have a significant advantage over others who might want to harm an organization. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
In a recent survey of organizations' security posture, one factor separated high performers from the rest of the pack: change management. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Learn more about the future of CERT and Rich Pethia's view of the Internet security landscape. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
ROI is a useful tool because it enables comparison among investments in a consistent way. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Integrating security into standard business operating processes and procedures is more effective than treating security as a compliance exercise. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Leaders need to be security conscious and to treat adequate security as a non-negotiable requirement of being in business. Listen on Apple Podcasts.
Threats to information security are increasingly stealthy, but they are on the rise and must be mitigated through sound policy and strategy. Listen on Apple Podcasts.