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Infosec Decoded Season 3 #38: Confidential Computing

With @kaitlynguru@infosec.exchange and @sambowne@infosec.exchange

May 12, 2023

Sam Bowne

Confidential computing is the future of targeted advertising
Confidential computing revolves around a trusted execution environment (TEE) or secure enclave. This uses hardware-based security mechanisms to protect any code and data placed inside it from everything outside the enclave, including the host operating system and any other application code.
The bad news – if you are a consumer – is that this allows for scenarios where companies can more easily target you with pitches that are tailored to you personally because confidential computing can potentially overcome some of the regulatory and privacy concerns around organizations sharing sensitive data with third parties.

AI Creators Are Still Making The Same Mistake This Programmer Made 25 Years Ago
A 2019 video poem "AI, Ain't I a Woman?" is a devastating three-minute exposé of racial and gender biases in automatic face recognition systems – systems developed by tech companies like Google and Microsoft. The systems often fail on women of color, incorrectly labeling them as male. Some of the failures are particularly egregious: The hair of Black civil rights leader Ida B. Wells is labeled as a "coonskin cap"; another Black woman is labeled as possessing a "walrus mustache."

Focusing on the Future: New Lens Analysis Approach To Slow the Progression of Nearsightedness
Lenses that modify retinal signals to reduce myopia progression have been clinically tested and are currently available in the market. Researchers hypothesize that these lenses slow the growth of the eyeball, preventing it from becoming more elongated. These lenses incorporate different types of structures, such as microlenses or microdiffusers, to manipulate the image properties at the peripheral retina while correcting the central vision.

New semaphore puzzle lights up at Adobe HQ
Beaming atop Adobe’s Almaden Tower – one of four buildings that make up Adobe’s headquarters - is Adobe’s San Jose Semaphore. As the Semaphore’s wheels turn slowly and come to rest, it transmits a message that is visible for miles (and online!), just waiting to be solved! The Semaphore is illuminated by 24,000 LED lights and has transmitted two codes since its installation in 2006. Now, the third code is waiting to be solved! Are you ready to crack the code?

San Jose Semaphore: The Solution (from 2007)
For the past year, the San Jose semaphore has been broadcasting the full text of Thomas Pynchon’s 1966 novel, The Crying of Lot 49. The code uses a "prolog" before each paragraph contining a seven-letter word from James Joyce’s Ulysses, which is the key for a Vigenère cipher.

Kaitlyn Handelman

Microsoft will take nearly a year to finish patching new 0-day Secure Boot bug

'Guilt-Tipping' Has Hit the Self-Checkout Aisle

It's happening: AI chatbot to replace human order-takers at Wendy's drive-thru flAWS challenge--AWS security CTF

flAWS 2 challenge--AWS security CTF