Archive for March 5, 2018

STEM Camps Coming To GTA Thanks To Local MPs

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 5, 2018 by itnerd

Canadian girls and boys are tomorrow’s Canadian innovators.  As young adults they will pursue their own employment paths from among a wide-ranging choice of endeavours, and many will choose careers in science, technology, engineering and math.  But not enough according to many sources.

And STEM Camp is changing this.

STEM Camp is Canada’s cutting-edge, not for profit, summer camp educational opportunity that engages Canadian youth to choose wisely – at an early age – whatever careers they may wish to pursue, as they make their way through the pre-post secondary learning process.

Thanks to the support of local Members of Parliament such as Markham-Thornhill MP Mary Ng and Beaches-East York MP, Nathaniel Erskine-Smiththe GTA will see an increase from 5 locations to 24 locations surrounding the GTA including Mississauga, Toronto, Etobicoke, Markham, Thornhill, Richmond Hill, Scarborough, Ajax, Whitby, Pickering and Oshawa.

During its early years of operation the STEM Camp attendance ratio between girls and boys has been at an unsatisfactory level of one girl to four boys. This summer, STEM Camp’s ratio is expected to dramatically change to the level of one girl to two boys – a significant increase.  Early registration for STEM Camp already points in that direction.  This change is the result of new tactics to encourage girls to take much more interest in preparing for careers that tended to be male-dominated in the past.

This year, changes in the STEM Camp program include an increase in gender-neutral themes and activities, Also, a significant marketing outreach was undertaken to remind parents that their daughters have a wide range of career choices before them in Canada’s tomorrow.  Moreover, more female counsellors – recruited from university and college STEM-related academic programs – will be engaged at STEM Camp locations everywhere.

STEM Camp will start on July 4, 2018 and continue for 6-8 weeks in the GTA depending on location. Learn more at


HP Serves Up Solutions To The Healthcare Sector

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 5, 2018 by itnerd

HP Inc. today unveiled a cutting-edge lineup of healthcare devices specifically designed to address the next generation of patient care. HP’s new healthcare portfolio announced at HIMSS18, is built to address the unique needs of healthcare providers, including enhanced patient safety, smarter workflows and telemedicine solutions, and robust data security features. The new devices include the HP EliteBook 840 G5 Healthcare Edition notebook, the HP EliteOne 800 G4 23.8 Healthcare Edition All-in-One (AiO), and the HP Healthcare Edition HC270cr Clinical Review Display.

The healthcare industry is faced with unique challenges when it comes to safety, efficiency, and security. There are approximately 1.7 million healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in U.S. hospitals each year, illustrating the need for devices designed for repeated and thorough sanitization. Additionally, there is a need to streamline clinical workflows and boost productivity to improve the care delivery experience. On average, clinicians log into workstations and applications 70 times a day, impacting the amount of time spent engaging with patients. Lastly, today’s security threats are complex and require comprehensive defense strategies. In 2016, over 16 millionhealthcare records were exposed or stolen, with the average cost of a data breach per lost or stolen record estimated to be $355 in the U.S.

Drawing on HP’s deep customer insights and its culture of innovation, the HP Healthcare Edition portfolio was thoughtfully designed to deliver safer, smarter, and secured features specific to the healthcare industry. The new healthcare portfolio includes:

  • The HP EliteBook 840 G5 Healthcare Edition Notebook, the world’s first notebook purpose-built for healthcare, includes HP Easy Clean software to facilitate cleaning with germicidal wipes while the device is still on. It is the world’s first ultra-slim notebook for healthcare to integrate RFID and biometrics for single sign-on authentication.10 It features HP Sure View Gen4 to deter visual hacking and is optimized for an intuitive collaboration experience: HP Audio Boost, HP Noise Cancellation, and IR/RGB camera for optimized audio and video calls.
  • The HP EliteOne 800 G4 23.8 Healthcare Edition AiO is the world’s first AiO with integrated dual-band RFID and biometrics for single sign-on authentication. It features HP Manageability Integration Kit (MIK) and provides a robust collaboration experience with HP Audio Boost, HP Noise Cancellation to suppress background distractions from noisy environments, and a dual-facing pop-camera to simplify patient registration and badging while offering an enhanced privacy option when the camera is not in use.
  • The HP Healthcare Edition HC270cr Clinical Review Display is the world’s first clinical review display to integrate an RFID reader that supports single-sign-on authentication. This 27-inch diagonal, 3.7- megapixel clinical review display is DICOM Part 14-compliant with luminance uniformity, automatic backlight monitoring, auto image rotation, and user calibration to accurately and consistently view medical images. It is the world’s first clinical review display with USB-C that supplies up to 65w power delivery for connected devices.

The HP Healthcare Edition portfolio is built for easy, repeatable sanitization and tested to meet stringent EN/IEC 60601-1-2:2015 standards, so the devices are safer to use in patient rooms. The healthcare portfolio delivers an optimal, collaborative telemedicine experience with Vidyo Ready and Skype for Business capabilities for superior video-visits and conferencing. Part of HP’s most secure and manageable PC portfolio, the notebook and AiO feature HP Sure Start G4, HP Sure Click, and HP Multi-Factor Authenticate.

  • HP EliteBook 840 G5 Healthcare Edition Notebook is expected to be available in May.
  • HP EliteOne 800 G4 23.8 Healthcare Edition All-in-One is expected to be available in June.
  • HP Healthcare Edition HC270cr Clinical Review Display is expected to be available in June.

Attendees at the HIMSS18 healthcare IT conference can experience the industry’s most comprehensive healthcare solutions at HP’s booth #2837. In addition to the new HP Healthcare Edition portfolio, HP print solutions and 3D printing applications, thin clients, and workstations will also be on display at the show.

Flaws In The LTE Protocol Can Lead To Epic Pwnage

Posted in Commentary with tags , on March 5, 2018 by itnerd

Researchers at at the University of Iowa and Purdue University have uncovered 10 different attack vectors that exploit flaws in three critical protocol operations of the LTE mobile network that we humans have come to depend upon to keep us connected to Facebook and Instagram.

All the attacks fall under one bucket which is called the authentication relay attack. These attacks allow hackers to connect to an LTE network without credentials, as well as to masquerade as a target’s device. Plus they can eavesdrop on phone calls and text messages, knock devices offline, and even spoof emergency alerts. In other words they can do some bad stuff and get away without getting caught. Here’s what researcher Syed Rafiul Hussain told ZDNet:

Among the 10 newly detected attacks, we have verified eight of them in a real testbed with SIM cards from four major US carriers.


The root cause of most of these attacks are the lacks of proper authentication, encryption, and replay protection in the important protocol messages.

This sounds similar to something that I wrote about that centered around Canadian carriers getting a failing grade when it came to security last year. Now one of the US carriers named has already implemented a fix. But I wonder if those carriers in Canada who didn’t measure up when it came to protecting their customers from stuff like this have done so. Never mind the other US carriers or carriers elsewhere. It would be really reassuring if they call came out and spoke to this so that we didn’t have to assume that they weren’t taking the security of their networks seriously.