The nature of digital data is that it is easily distributable, copyable and very hard to verify since it has no physical counterpart. For years people relied on hardware solutions like usb sticks with sophisticated chips on them for the security of the data. The nature of this data was never part of it.
It is just impossible to secure data without having a hardware solution backing this up. The hardware platform was already introduced and demonstrated a decade ago and a lot of business machines already have basic support for it. But these were only introduced to secure interest of media producers sing protocols like HDCP which secures the line between screen and computer. And exactly this is were we have to look at for understanding what the consequence could be of escalation of the open data conflict surrounding #wikileaks. The music industry is still hurting due to the consequences of poor and shortsighted choices.
Learning from this the following points could help ease the pain:
The effects of clouds of processing power in computer or human for impacts the way we live more every day. We cannot expect technology that is used to play games on mobile phones not to be used for processing leaked data.
What is needed is a system that works just as the door of your house. You have a key to open it and to lock it down but it somebody drives a car in it, it just opens. Don’t rely on the quality of the key, but bring more enforcement to the door.
On the other hand data security and privacy should be core values that children learn about as soon as they touch a computer….
Today Amazon (AMZ) announced that the Cloudfront content distribution network supports time-to-live setting on the served objects lower than 24 hours. It can be set as low as one hour which makes this service usable for serving whole websites. This is great news.
Another proposal has been made to support HTTPS which is also needed, but missing is support for welcome pages. These pages are the index.html pages you get shown when you visit a directory or the root of the site with your browser. It shouldn’t be too hard to implement this for the Cloudfront service thus not breaking the S3 rest XML functions.
And while we are updating this service for end-user content-delivery can we also support:
- case-insensitive name mapping, if the user requests foo.html but the filename is Foo.html this could be resolved directly only is not the lowercase foo.html is not also available.
- custom 404 pages which just might be as easy as placing a 404.html in the root of the S3 bucket.
Another killer adjustment to other services would be transparent support of websockets. In the new cloud world enterprises aren’t investing anymore in web infrastructure. As part of the simple notification service support for websockets and HTML5 notifications would be very useful. Developers can start building their HTML5 applications and deliver them to the enterprise users that do not need the specific infrastructure for it.
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