Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Perimeter

12/1/2009
05:05 AM
Gadi Evron
Gadi Evron
Commentary
Connect Directly
Twitter
LinkedIn
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%

The Secret Sauce For Security Blogging

I recently wrote in my personal blog about how some security blogs manage to engage their audience better than others and make their readers feel more in touch with what's happening -- on top of earning credibility.

I recently wrote in my personal blog about how some security blogs manage to engage their audience better than others and make their readers feel more in touch with what's happening -- on top of earning credibility.The "Last Psychiatrist" posted a very good blog where he discusses how the news media creates fake credibility by, for example, having someone report from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange with a lot of background noise. I have some other theories to present that may complement his, and some examples to illustrate them.

As he mentions, background microphone noise is easy to solve, and the information shared with us they already have in the studio. Then why do it? The setting of reporting "on the ground" gives us viewers a feeling that the report is more credible, when in fact it is quite possible the reporter is reading Yahoo! for the latest stock information, just as easy as we can.

My own experience shows me other aspects of this same phenomenon. The "on the ground" factor is not necessarily about credibility. It may just as well be about interest in the form of audience engagement.

In our daily jobs we don't often do anything very exciting, and if we read about something happening RIGHT NOW and the battle story behind it, then we are a part of it and gain a feeling of importance.

In the Internet security and network operations fields, people get very excited when stories from the front lines are shared with them. They get the feeling they are on the front lines themselves -- a borrowed feeling of importance -- and are getting the information before anyone else, thereby increasing the information's value and their own.

Techies often value real raw data, whereas in most places, public data is prechewed, seen before, and inaccurate (news vs. opinion). By providing raw data from the front lines, we feel we have the truth of the matter and then believe in the whole -- after checking into just a small part of it ourselves.

One example of this is the SANS Internet Storm Center (ISC) Diary, where very good people (and good friends) share their experiences from the field and treat their readers as a part of the larger community that sends in data. Even when their posts have no relation to anything happening right now, it feels like they do.

And whenever I share a war story of my own so that people are informed of new threats, the types of responses I get are pathos- rather than logos-based. This proved very successful when I built SecuriTeam blogs during 2006-7 and brought it up from 80 unique readers a month to 15,000 unique readers a month.

Share real experiences (and, obviously, as much real data as possible), and your users will be more engaged with your writing and visit your blog more often.

As half a joke, there is a also a political communication reason for the background noise. In one of the best TV shows ever written, "Yes Minister," the (now Prime Minister) has his first TV interview. When he finds out he has nothing new to say, he is instructed to wear a loud suit (the background is a screaming yellow) just to distract people that he actually has nothing new to share.

Follow Gadi Evron on Twitter: http://twitter.com/gadievron

Gadi Evron is an independent security strategist based in Israel. Special to Dark Reading. Gadi is CEO and founder of Cymmetria, a cyber deception startup and chairman of the Israeli CERT. Previously, he was vice president of cybersecurity strategy for Kaspersky Lab and led PwC's Cyber Security Center of Excellence, located in Israel. He is widely recognized for ... View Full Bio

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Cybersecurity Team Holiday Guide: 2019 Gag Gift Edition
Ericka Chickowski, Contributing Writer,  12/2/2019
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Current Issue
Navigating the Deluge of Security Data
In this Tech Digest, Dark Reading shares the experiences of some top security practitioners as they navigate volumes of security data. We examine some examples of how enterprises can cull this data to find the clues they need.
Flash Poll
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
Frustrated with recurring intrusions and breaches, cybersecurity professionals are questioning some of the industrys conventional wisdom. Heres a look at what theyre thinking about.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2019-19647
PUBLISHED: 2019-12-09
radare2 through 4.0.0 lacks validation of the content variable in the function r_asm_pseudo_incbin at libr/asm/asm.c, ultimately leading to an arbitrary write. This allows remote attackers to cause a denial of service (application crash) or possibly have unspecified other impact via crafted input.
CVE-2019-19648
PUBLISHED: 2019-12-09
In the macho_parse_file functionality in macho/macho.c of YARA 3.11.0, command_size may be inconsistent with the real size. A specially crafted MachO file can cause an out-of-bounds memory access, resulting in Denial of Service (application crash) or potential code execution.
CVE-2019-19642
PUBLISHED: 2019-12-08
On SuperMicro X8STi-F motherboards with IPMI firmware 2.06 and BIOS 02.68, the Virtual Media feature allows OS Command Injection by authenticated attackers who can send HTTP requests to the IPMI IP address. This requires a POST to /rpc/setvmdrive.asp with shell metacharacters in ShareHost or ShareNa...
CVE-2019-19637
PUBLISHED: 2019-12-08
An issue was discovered in libsixel 1.8.2. There is an integer overflow in the function sixel_decode_raw_impl at fromsixel.c.
CVE-2019-19638
PUBLISHED: 2019-12-08
An issue was discovered in libsixel 1.8.2. There is a heap-based buffer overflow in the function load_pnm at frompnm.c, due to an integer overflow.