[Protocol of Blue Sun Division board meeting]
[New Angeles. 05-FEB-2216]
[Mr. Orange] Gentlemen... Welcome. As you know, the last years have not been particularly glorious. Despite significant improvements in our He-3 reactors efficiency, we had to accept significant price decreases thanks to... uhm... some reputation problems. It is our duty to restore our image and make our name shine as bright as the Wyldside’s neon strip lights. Information was stolen from us and published on the net. This must not happen again!
[Mr. Blonde] Sir, with all due respect, our cybersecurity laboratory is doing all they can, but it seems that those hackers tear in new holes in our defensive systems faster than we can...
[Mr. Orange] ...plug the old ones. I know. Mr. Blonde, describe your job to me.
[Mr. Blonde] Is this necessary?
[Mr. Orange] Yes.
[Mr. Blonde] I am in charge of developing our intrusion countermeasure electronics. These are our first line of defence against unauthorized accesses.
[Mr. Orange] And what exactly do those electronics do?
[Mr. Blonde] Well, they prevent hackers to infiltrate our mainframe servers.
[Mr. Orange] Nothing else?
[Mr. Blonde] Isn’t that enough?
[Mr. Orange] Not anymore. Our progress in ICE design has been marginal. Any kid can try to attack our servers with impunity. Our servers are a playground for the worst scum. This must have an end!
[Mr. Pink] Sir, I might have an idea.
[Mr. Orange] Speak.
[Mr. Pink] I am frequently in contact with the Haas-Bioroid production facility in Heinlein. They are one of the biggest consumers of electricity from our Blue Sun reactor. Recently I got into a conversation with one of their system operators – Ryon Knight. He told me about a piece of ICE he is particularly fond of. It is called “Janus”.
[Mr. Orange] Go on...
[Mr. Pink] If I understood Mr. Knight correctly, any unauthorized attempt to access data is not prevented by “Janus”...
[Mr. Orange] What?!
[Mr. Pink] ...but some highly advanced brain mapping algorithms implemented within the “Janus” ICE cause neural degeneration in the attacker’s brain and more often than not some peripheral damage occurs as well, leading to deletion of programs, attack scripts or even parts of the attacker’s hardware.
[Mr. Orange] Mr. Pink, you had my curiosity, but now you have my attention.
[Mr. Pink] The “Janus” ICE is usually very effective. However, I have to admit that attackers can avoid some of the negative effects by manually increasing their computing power. Still, a complete prevention of the “Janus” subroutines is very unlikely, particularly when the attack on our servers has been going on for some time before the hacker jacks into a system protected by a “Janus”.
[Mr. Orange] So there is always at least some counter attack on the hacker?
[Mr. Pink] Yes, unless they use special programs. But those programs consume a lot of resources. So even if an attacker is able to circumvent the complete “Janus”, chances are that other pieces of ICE do the rest of the work and keep our servers save.
[Mr. Orange] You are saying that we use the “Janus” as outer defence, force the attacker to take permanent neural damage or lose a lot of resources while on the inside some of Mr. Blonde’s ICE keep the hacker out. That is brilliant.
[Mr. Pink] But wait, there’s more. Studies found, that attackers that took neural damage are less able to avoid discovery. Prior to this meeting I talked to Mr. Blue. I am sure, he will be glad to inform you about his progresses.
[Mr. Blue] I sure am. As you know, my job is to ensure the supply chain of our He-3 from Heinlein to earth. The backbone is the Beanstalk which is supervised by the Space Elevator Authority – SEA. The SEA tracks and logs not only the passenger and cargo pods that go up and down the ‘Stalk, but they also do a complete surveillance of the data that is transferred via the Near-Earth Hub. As all our servers are connected via the Hub to the rest of the Network, any attacker must establish his connection through this node as well – and that makes him vulnerable to attempts of location disclosure...
[Mr. Orange] ...and once we have gained knowledge of the attackers’ location we send this information to Ms. Mills’ department, I suppose?
[Mr. Blue] Precisely. To be frank, we have used the SEA information frequently in the past. But hackers that attacked us began to be particularly cautious. They started to wear specific protection gear or fled into crowds of people, such that they could not be dealt with specifically. To be honest, “specificity” is not one of Ms. Mills’ team’s particular strengths either, but at least it is not as public.
[Mr. Pink] Right. And caused by those developments, we have stopped making use of Ms. Mills as well as the SEA. But I am sure that the implementation of “Janus” within our data protection protocols opens this door again. I mentioned that an unprepared encounter with the “Janus” leads to permanent neural damage. We can leverage this damage.
[Mr. Orange] Gentlemen, I am sold on the concept.
[Mr. Brown] I am sorry to interrupt, but you have not yet mentioned the license cost of “Janus”.
[Mr. Pink] Let me quickly look up the figures. ... Alright here it is. If we max out on the implementation of “Janus”, we need to spend 60% of our licensing budget. This might seem like a lot, but I think we made clear earlier, that the usage of “Janus” increases the potential of Mr. Blonde’s in-house ICE a lot - such that we are able to quit buying licenses for other external ICE.
[Mr. Brown] And what about the SEA connection?
[Mr. Blue] Amounts to less than 15%.
[Mr. Brown] So the “Janus” and SEA take 75% together.
[Mr. Pink] Approximately, yes.
[Mr. White] Don’t forget our contract with Mr. Howard.
[Mr Brown] He takes 20% of our budget right now. That would leave us with 5% remaining...
[Mr. Orange] I have an idea. In the long run, we need own employees that are able to perform the tasks of Mr. Howard. Let’s initiate an Executive Bootcamp in order to accelerate this progress. We should be able to decrease the need of Mr. Howard if at least some of his tasks can be done by our own recruits.
[Mr. White] We are currently in negotiations with Mr. Stone, who is the head of human resources of the whole Weyland Consortium. If we are lucky enough, he will put effort into our cause and create a position for someone with Mr. Howard’s skillset in our company. One can dream.
[Mr. Orange] I like that. Mr. Blue, decrease Mr. Howard’s contract by at third. This leaves how much license budget for other tasks?
[Mr. Blue] Around 15%.
[Mr. Orange] Fair enough. What shall we use that on?
[Mr. White] You began the talk with our need to increase our public reputation. I think I have found something that suits our needs. There is a public project called the “Global Food Initiative”. If we adopt it and use our remaining licensing budget to do so, we will certainly improve our image. Another project we should fund is the renovation of Oaktown. Not only will people see our good intentions, but actually we are able to increase our profits. Win/Win, I’d say.
[Mr. Orange] Those suggestions are very good. But we need to have more projects in order to satisfy the Consortium.
[Mr. White] True. But I have put some thought into the topic. We are working on a secret agenda, “Project Atlas”. If we successfully develop it, we are able to increase the effectiveness of our company significantly. Lastly, we are still in a Corporate War with NBN over the extensive use of Ms. Mills services which needs settling.
[Mr. Orange] I am impressed by the potential benefits of “Project Atlas”. The overall amount of projects seems sufficient now. Let us talk about the finances now. Mr. Blue, go ahead.
[Mr. Blue] With pleasure. Our in-house brokerage division will continue to make money with their Hedge Fund trading. We also expect our recent restructuring efforts to positively affect our results. Lastly, our “Oversight AI” program accelerates the corporate development a lot and leverages our reactor’s ability to dynamically adapt to our customers’ requirements. Overall, we can expect to continue contributing the majority of profit to the Consortium.
[Mr. Orange] Excellent. Gentlemen, I am more than pleased by today’s meeting. Please begin implementing the decided processes and report back to me regularly. You are dismissed.
14 Feb 2016 anr_marsellus
17 Feb 2016 Sutlomatsch