Articles

327 Items

U.S. Capitol building, Washington D.C

Library of Congress/Carol M. Highsmith

Magazine Article - Federal Times

How Technologists in Government Could Shape Better Tech Policy

    Author:
  • Andrew Eversden
| Aug. 09, 2019

In an interview with Federal Times, Bruce Schneier says that both Congress and federal agencies need public interest technologists—people who combine their technological expertise with public policy focus—on staff.

Iran Syria missiles

Associated Press

Journal Article - International Affairs

Iran's Syria Strategy: The Evolution of Deterrence

| Feb. 04, 2019

Iran has been a critical player in the Syrian war since 2011, crafting a complex foreign policy and military strategy to preserve its Syrian ally. What have been the drivers of Iranian decision-making in this conflict? And how has Iranian strategy evolved over the course of the war? This article argues that the logic of deterrence has been fundamental not just for shaping the contours of Iran–Syria relations since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, but also for determining the overall trajectory of Iranian strategy in the Syrian war. The authors outline Iran's decision-making calculus and divide the country's strategy on Syria after the Arab Spring into four primary phases: 1) a ‘Basij’ strategy to establish local militias in Syria; 2) a regionalization strategy to incorporate transnational fighters and militias in the war effort; 3) an internationalization strategy to incorporate Russia and balance the United States; and 4) a post-ISIS deterrence strategy to balance against the United States, Turkey and Israel. Iran's Syria strategy progressively escalated in response to the possible defeat of its ally and the deterioration of its forward deterrence capacities against the United States and Israel. Today, the potential for direct inter-state conflict is rising as proxy warfare declines and Iran attempts to maintain the credibility of its forward deterrence.

Great Decisions Cover

Foreign Policy Association

Journal Article - Foreign Policy Association

The State of the State Department and American Diplomacy

| Jan. 03, 2019

During the Trump administration, the usual ways of conducting diplomacy have been upended. Many positions in the State Department have never been filled, and meetings with foreign leaders such as Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin have been undertaken with little advance planning. What effect are these changes having now, and how will they affect ongoing relationships between the United States and its allies and adversaries?

Photo of Mark Zuckerberg preparing to resume testimony about user data on Facebook.

(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Magazine Article - Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School

America Needs to Align Technology with a Public Purpose

| Nov. 25, 2018

The arc of innovative progress has reached an inflection point, writes Ash Carter in The Atlantic. "Recent technological change that has brought immeasurable improvements to billions around the globe now threatens to overwhelm us. Making this disruption positive for all is the chief challenge of our time. We ourselves—not only market forces—should bend the arc of change toward human good. To do so, we must reinvigorate an ethos of public purpose that has become dangerously decoupled from many of today’s leading tech endeavors."

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Journal Article - IEEE Internet of Things

IIoT Cybersecurity Risk Modeling for SCADA Systems

| Apr. 06, 2018

Abstract:

Urban critical infrastructure such as electric grids, water networks and transportation systems are prime targets for cyberattacks. These systems are composed of connected devices which we call the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT). An attack on urban critical infrastructure IIoT would cause considerable disruption to society. Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems are typically used to control IIoT for urban critical infrastructure. Despite the clear need to understand the cyber risk to urban critical infrastructure, there is no data-driven model for evaluating SCADA software risk for IIoT devices. In this paper, we compare non-SCADA and SCADA systems and establish, using cosine similarity tests, that SCADA as a software subclass holds unique risk attributes for IIoT. We then disprove the commonly accepted notion that the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) risk metrics of Exploitability and Impact are not correlated with attack for the SCADA subclass of software. A series of statistical models are developed to identify SCADA risk metrics that can be used to evaluate the risk that a SCADA-related vulnerability is exploited. Based on our findings, we build a customizable SCADA risk prioritization schema that can be used by the security community to better understand SCADA-specific risk. Considering the distinct properties of SCADA systems, a data-driven prioritization schema will help researchers identify security gaps specific to this software subclass that is essential to our society’s operations.