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Security Explained

Author: Chris Grayson, Drew Porter, Logan Lamb

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Welcome to Security Explained, where we strive to make the complex realm of cyber security better understood by everyone. Join our three hackers / hosts Christopher Grayson, Drew Porter, and Logan Lamb for approachable conversation and a few laughs on the world of hackers, how to think about privacy and security in today's rapidly changing world, and how to keep yourself and your loved ones safe.
18 Episodes
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It's a question we get all the time - "what can I do to be more secure?"It's also a question that there's not a great concise answer to. That being said, we did our best to boil down the hottest tips that we have for keeping  your personal things and data secure. From password managers to multi-factor authentication, from browser plugins to downloading your data from companies whose services you use, we have a few recommendations that we think can meaningfully improve your security well-being with a modicum of effort (and in some cases, money). With these tricks in hand, it's likely that you won't be the lowest hanging fruit!
Securing your small business may seem like an impossible task or something you do not have to worry about right now. Unfortunately, it is something every small business has to worry about in todays world. In this episode we talk about how non-technical small business owners can improve their security around their business without breaking the bank, with most items able to be done for free.  
Botnets w/ Yacin Nadji

Botnets w/ Yacin Nadji

2021-04-1458:48

Is your refrigerator running? If so, perhaps it's participating in a DDOS attack.This is the reality of the world we live in. There's a computer in just about everything, and in many cases those computers are compromised are part of a botnet. In this episode we sit down with our friend and industry expert Yacin Nadji and hear from him on what botnets are, the role they play in the modern technological world, and ways that we can protect ourselves from them and, maybe, even take them down. https://www.benzinga.com/general/20/11/18293606/the-7-biggest-botnets-of-all-time
Hacker Culture v. I

Hacker Culture v. I

2021-03-3157:47

Hacker culture is one of those terms that means different things to just about every member of the security community, and in this episode we do what we can to describe what it means to us. From our experience in industry, to our participation in conferences and security research, to our open source projects and the ridiculous depictions of “hackers” in popular media, we cover a bit of the good, the bad, and the ugly of hacker culture as we see it. Join us in part one of this conversation around our personal experiences in the hacker community!
It's the year 2021 and just about every common household good can be purchased with a computer in it. From your refrigerator to your toaster to your television to your water bottle, it seems that there is no end in sight for just how many "helpful" things computers can do for your home and life.We're here to challenge that assumption and hopefully convince you that not everything benefits from having a computer in it. Even moreso, this prevalence of insecure and cheap devices all across your life can leave some worrying problems behind when it comes to your privacy and security.
Righteous Hacks v. I

Righteous Hacks v. I

2021-03-0353:29

In today's episode we have our first installment of Righteous Hacks, a discussion of some of the coolest, most impactful, or funny hacks seen in the world. From State sponsored to lone researcher, we break down a few of the most righteous hacks. 
Cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies

2021-02-1758:33

In this week’s episode we’ll be discussing a burgeoning new asset class, cryptocurrencies. "The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks." This is the message which is embedded in the genesis block of Bitcoin, the most valuable cryptocurrency in the world. In just under twelve years, Bitcoin has gone from nothing to a $345 billion market cap asset with SEC regulation.What are cryptocurrencies? What are they good for, how do they work, and why is bitcoin so valuable? We’ll be covering these topics and, if you own any, how best to secure your digital assets.DEF CON 23 Cracking CryptoCurrency Brainwallets - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foil0hzl4Pg Etheroll Crypto Casino - https://etheroll.com/#/about
In this episode of Security Explained we cover one of our favorite hacking targets, cars! We cover the myths and realities of car hacking with special guest Craig Smith, a leader in the car hacking community and the man who literally wrote the book on car hacking. Some of the topics we cover include the DEFCON car hacking village, right to repair laws, and that one scene from the Fast and the Furious 8.https://www.carhackingvillage.com/ https://nostarch.com/carhacking http://opengarages.org/index.php/Main_Page
Throughout our careers in the security industry it’s not uncommon that we’re asked “how can I get started in security?” It’s also one of the questions we like to answer most, as we love for others to be able to learn from our mistakes (of which we have made plenty).In this episode we talk about reasons to consider or avoid the industry, our personal journeys into our current positions, what sort of skills you’ll need and how best to hone them, what free resources are at your disposal to learn, and how you can turn those resources into gainful employment. While the information security industry may not be for everyone, it has certainly been an enjoyable place for us to call home, and we encourage you to consider it as well. Join us in this conversation!https://www.slideshare.net/ChrisGrayson/so-you-want-to-be-a-hackerhttps://www.vulnhub.com/http://www.securitytube.net/https://opensecuritytraining.info/https://www.amazon.com/Tangled-Web-Securing-Modern-Applications/dp/1593273886https://www.hackerone.com/https://ctftime.org/ctf-wtf/https://defcongroups.org/dcpages.htmlhttps://www.offensive-security.com/courses-and-certifications/https://www.corelan.be/
When we're considering the security properties of something, whether it's a building, an app, an API, a network, or really anything else, there is a core set of concepts that we lean on to inform our evaluation. These core concepts provide a foundation to reason about whether the security provided by the entity in question is sufficient and, in the case that it's not, how you can mitigate the risks posed by its flaws. In this first episode on core security concepts we discuss authentication vs. authorization, the principle of least privilege, some flaws of human behavior, security vs. usability, and the elusive notion of perfect security. With these concepts in hand you will be better equipped to consider the risks of everything you interact with in your day-to-day life.
It's the year 2020 and if you're anything like us, you may feel that there's no such thing as objective truth anymore. The tirade of untrue statements, propaganda, and conspiracy theories is enough to make even the most resilient people wary of their own minds and experiences. We are all collectively being gaslit through both misinformation and targeted disinformation campaigns, and they're working to devastating effect.So what is misinformation? How about disinformation? Is there a difference? What purposes do they serve? How can you try to tease out the signal from the noise?Join us in a conversation around how false "facts," propaganda, and conspiracy theories are spread and what effect they can have on you.Links:https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/22/us/politics/coronavirus-china-disinformation.htmlhttps://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/16/us/coronavirus-text-messages-national-quarantine.htmlhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3490543/ https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:uDwvS9v6FL8J:https://www.latimes.com/business/la-xpm-2014-feb-23-la-fi-hiltzik-20140221-story.html+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&client=firefox-b-1-dhttps://www.reddit.com/r/videos/comments/bb7t71/reddit_for_sale_how_we_bought_the_top_spot_for/https://www.facebook.com/will.allen.9400/videos/4805424976137953/https://www.cnn.com/2020/07/28/tech/twitter-donald-trump-jr/index.htmlhttps://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-8589497/Coca-Colas-work-scientists-low-point-history-public-health.html
Home Security

Home Security

2020-11-2551:50

Have you ever seen one of those ADT stickers on the window of someone's home and wondered if they actually have a home security system? Does having a sticker alone offer much security for your home? What is the best way to keep your home and its contents safe from intruders?Join us in this week's episode as we cover home security systems, how they work, how they're flawed, and how you can better protect your home with one.
The Department of Justice has recently released a new memo entitled "International Statement: End-To-End Encryption and Public Safety," and while it says a lot about helping trafficked kids and combating other crime, the memo outlines proposals that will do nothing of the sort. In this episode we discuss the content of this memo and the eerily similar-sounding EARN IT act, pick apart which parts of both are valid and which aren't, and talk about the real motivations behind these documents. We cover the current processes for gaining lawful access to data and how these new proposals don't amount to any true improvement upon existing capabilities.As has been the standard theme for the past two decades, American privacy is under attack. These new positions reflect a stark step in the wrong direction if you care to preserve human privacy.
Phishing

Phishing

2020-10-2859:29

Did you know that there's a Nigerian prince that just so happens to know you and needs you to help them transfer some money into your country? How about you download and share this FREE Starbucks gift card that your company's benefits program has enrolled in? Do you need to update Adobe Flash?If you've ever seen an email informing you of anything above, chances are you were on the receiving end of a phishing attack. In this episode we cover what phishing means, what forms of phishing attacks are out there, how you can improve your chances at identifying communications as phishing, and we share a few stories about the phish we have caught.
Election Security

Election Security

2020-10-1448:09

With 20 days left until election day, the security of America's upcoming presidential election is something on a lot of peoples' minds. What can you do to ensure that your vote gets counted? What should you be concerned about and what isn't such a big deal? How are elections hacked and how can we protect them? We've got some stories and information to share with you.
There's a lot of FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) when it comes to stories of governments being able to hack into everything, corporations listening to your every move, and radio waves causing disease. Join us for the first installment in our conversations on conspiracy theories, where we'll help debunk (or potentially lend credence to) a number of seemingly far-fetched conspiracy theories in the security world.
Passwords

Passwords

2020-09-0653:58

Passwords are like opinions - everyone's got them. The bad news is that it's likely the bad guys have your password(s) too! In this episode we cover the basics of passwords, why they're so ubiquitous, where they fail from a security standpoint, and how you can protect your accounts from getting hacked even when someone else steals your password.
In this episode we cover the ins and outs of virtual private networks (VPNs) and how they can affect your security and privacy. Have you heard that VPNs will make you unhackable? That they'll make you untraceable? We've heard all that too, so let's talk about what they'll actually do for you.Featuring Chris Grayson, Drew Porter, and Logan Lamb.
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