Quality Management 2.0 Blog

Cyber Security and Threat Assessment for Risk Assessment

Posted by Mary McAtee on Jan 22, 2015 @ 09:00 AM

One of the positive peripheral results from the flurry of reactions to the movie, “The Interview” was a short-lived media focus on cyber-terrorism.  The recognition of cyber-attacks has been slow to evolve but is gaining traction. In the last major threat assessment document, prepared during the final year of the Bush Administration, the term Cyber Threat was mentioned by name less than ten times. Last year’s assessment prepared by the Obama Administration mentioned Cyber Terrorism less than 100 times. The current joint intelligence threat assessment document just released mentioned Cyber Terrorism more than 1000 times. C-SPAN recently televised the briefing to the House Intelligence committee by the NSA and CIA. As redacted as I am sure it was it was still chilling. Malware (most likely introduced by China years ago) has been identified in several locations in the infrastructure for the nation’s power grid and water purification and delivery systems. While this specific threat has been neutralized, the idea of a foreign government or other groups planting a latent threat that can be activated when and if the mood strikes is very unsettling. These are not simple annoying denial of service attacks. One of the municipal power generation facilities cooperated with the NSA and permitted activating the malware on one turbine generator control system. The program once activated, took control of the turbine and forced it to run out of safe operating limits until it self–destructed. One can easily imagine the impact on a major city and the entire economy if this or similar incidents were to happen.

Read More

Topics: Risk Assessment & Analysis

Leveraging Risk Assessment to Avoid Crisis

Posted by Mary McAtee on Jan 16, 2015 @ 11:33 AM

People who know me are very aware of how much I love boats and getting out on the water. My father was a Merchant Seaman and my spouse and close friends tend to all have seawater in their veins.  This love of the water includes a deep respect for the power and unpredictable nature of the ocean. Most misadventures at sea seem to be a case study in the precise definition of a “Cluster F&$@”.  Every major and even minor disaster at sea seems to always involve several of the fates conspiring together to allow the progress of a bad situation to become worse. Let’s take just one recent example from the news. Rob Konrad, a former player for the Miami Dolphins, was several miles offshore on his 36 foot fishing boat. He fell overboard and ended up swimming over 9 miles through shark infested waters to reach shore in Palm Beach. Several contributing factors put him in that water swimming for his life. Almost any other person would have become another sad obituary but his physical conditioning overcame some really bad decisions on his part:

Read More

Topics: Risk Management, Risk Assessment Software

Browse by Tag