Browsing: Public Safety

I recently had the chance to talk with the legendary Vint Cerf, one of the founding fathers of the internet. We had a wide-ranging discussion about the past, present and future of the internet, network security and what it would take to successfully, safely and reliably merge the digital and physical worlds, a concept known as the “Internet of Things,” or IoT. As its name suggests, the internet of things will connect all kinds of things, bringing us a wealth of data about, well, everything that we can use to improve our lives. For example, internet-connected smart parking meters are helping people find available parking spaces, saving time, fuel and probably more than a few relationships. People are using fitness…

I’ve been interested in science ever since I was a child. If you had told 8-year-old me that I was going to be a physicist, then I would have been very excited. Had you told me that my lab would be filled with a bevy of bombs, and that my typical work day might involve blasting those bombs with X-rays, then I would have been thrilled! And the best part is it’s all for a good cause: To help put better equipment in the hands of the nation’s bomb squads so they can keep the public safe. The goal of public safety bomb squads is to locate explosive devices and render them safe before they can do harm. According to…

I grew up in a small farming community in southern Georgia. My main exposure to new technology was through the annual farm equipment exposition, science fiction books and television. One of my favorite shows was The Six Million Dollar Man. Do you remember the famous opening lines? “Steve Austin, astronaut. A man barely alive.” “Gentlemen, we can rebuild him. We have the technology. We have the capability to make the world’s first bionic man. Steve Austin will be that man. Better than he was before. Better… stronger… faster.” (If you’re like me, you just heard that classic bionic sound in your mind.) Although it’s not really bionics, the research community and private sector are focusing on the related area of…

After four years of research and development, NIST has published a groundbreaking new security guideline that addresses the longstanding problem of how to engineer trustworthy, secure systems—systems that can provide continuity of capabilities, functions, services, and operations during a wide range of disruptions, threats, and other hazards. In fact, I think that Special Publication 800-160, Systems Security Engineering, is the most important publication that I have been associated with in my two decades of service with NIST. I want to share what led me to this conclusion. The Current Landscape The United States, and every other industrialized nation, is experiencing explosive growth in information technology. These technological innovations have given us access to computing and communications capabilities unparalleled in the…

Guest blog post by Dominic Sims, CEO, International Code Council “Buildings built to the most modern building codes were the safest places to be during Hurricane Sandy.” Having spent most of my life in code enforcement, I’ve known this to be fact and have seen the evidence with my own eyes. But hearing New York City Chief Resilience Officer Daniel Zarrilli say it on stage at the White House Conference on Resilient Building Codes this past May after the death and destruction wrought on the Northeast during Superstorm Sandy in 2012 brought back so many memories and reminded me why the International Code Council’s motto and mission is: “People Helping People Build a Safer World.” Spending much of my career…

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