Weekend Reads 042420

However, as the reliance on these networks grows, it is becoming increasingly difficult to understand how to sustain their coverage and capacity. Traffic loads can become unpredictable and rapidly shift, circuit routes are not always available and, if they are available, they often take months to order and activate. —Tim Fiola

Today, as the world lives in a virus-inspired lockdown and working from home has become the norm, we are fast beginning to understand exactly what ‘best effort broadband’ means in terms of connectivity, latency and jitter. What I wouldn’t give right now for the option to pay for a premium connection with a guaranteed service level service. —Hayim Porat

Now that we are all working from home (WFH), the need for encryption must also increase in priority and awareness. Zoom’s popular video conferencing solution got in hot water because they promised “end-to-end” encryption but didn’t deliver on it — prompting some organizations to ban it from use altogether. Encryption protects confidential information from being exposed in transmission, providing a secure way for the intended recipient to get the information without snooping by others. —

While Mudge noted that Zoom’s Windows and Mac clients are (possibly accidentally) somewhat safer than the Linux client, I suspect that their servers run on Linux. Were they written with similar lack of attention to security? Were the protective measures similarly ignored? —Steven Bellovin

It used to be difficult to convince U.S. policymakers that China was stealing our intellectual property and gaining advantages over the United States in critical national security technology. —Alex Gallo

For more than two decades, enterprises have relied on VPN technologies to enable remote access to corporate applications and data. In recent years, these technologies have diminished in importance as more businesses transition to cloud-based applications and users are less dependent on access to the corporate network. Yet with enterprises forced to support a sudden surge in remote work during the coronavirus outbreak, remote access technologies have quickly made a comeback as a critical component of the enterprise technology stack. —Rob Smith

While it might still be too early to make predictions, there are dozens of articles on the web predicting how the COVID-19 pandemic might change our long-term behavior. Here are some of the more interesting predictions I’ve seen that involve broadband and telecom. —Doug Dawson

If ever there was a time for data center owner-operators and their customers to embrace automation and remote management and monitoring of their infrastructure, that time is now. With most every nation in the world having imposed stay-at-home orders and social distancing policies due to COVID-19, maintaining access to data center infrastructure and the essential communications they support is more critical than ever. —Lance Devin

A newly discovered unpatchable hardware vulnerability in Xilinx programmable logic products could allow an attacker to break bitstream encryption, and clone intellectual property, change the functionality, and even implant hardware Trojans. —Ravie Lakshmanan

Building an effective and resilient organization on a budget isn’t a small task. When it comes to cybersecurity budgets, there are many different aspects that need to be considered. Thankfully, alignment with industry best practice and recognized security frameworks adds a small amount of clarity to this challenge. —Zoë Rose

Have you ever solved a real-life maze? The approach that most of us take while solving a maze is that we follow a path until we reach a dead end, and then backtrack and retrace our steps to find another possible path. —Anamika Ahmed