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Juan Pablo Ramirez
Juan Pablo Ramirez

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COVID-19 and world today


Has been several months since the world suffer one of the most precise and dedicated zero day exploits of our history.
(For those who does not know what a zero day is go here, but long story short, we were hit by something we did not know that existed, and had no defense against it until was too late, and... made every infrastructure and protocol fail, every security dude worse nightmare).

Literally this little virus spread across our lives and disrupt every industry, causing major collapses across the world, across culture, governments and industries.

As humans, we failed to defend ourselves.

One clear thing that COVID-19 is still doing to us, is pinning the out liars of our world, forcing our hand to face our biggest fears, ourselves.
From the selfish hoarders, at the beginning, or the leaders that did not listen the warnings, the CEO's and the market gurus that lied about their investments and put everybody at risk.

We can lie to each other all we want.. we can hide it behind technicalities, and try to defend our countries, our flags, our political party, but we keep forgetting one thing....

Like a computer Virus, COVID-19 does not discriminate, will affect us and change us if we don't listen and don't respect the rules, that's what has been doing all this time.

I've been a security architect for almost 18 years now, worked in several companies with different levels of training and expertise, teach security DevOps here and there and security architecture for Cloud Architects and the like. When a security breach reaches a client, it's 99.9% Human error, either in the perimeter, software pipeline, bug or whatever else, it's always a human that forgot to check, and a protocol that forgot to verify that, basically I see this happening all the time, seeing it at a massive scale like COVID-19 it's terrifying.

I saw during this time all level of denial, from businesses that could see this happening miles away and decided to face it and put their employees at risk, to governments that decided not to listen to our very own experts.

As human race, we failed, and 2020 has been our defeat year.
We failed to collaborate as a specie, as one world, we failed obeying simple orders, driven by our own selfishness, we failed protecting our elders, as we forgot about them when we did not take care of ourselves.

And the worst part is .. we could avoid this, prevent it from getting it worst, and we are still unable to do so.

Since the beginning the data was there, our expert told us what could happen if we did not take care of this threat sooner. Was simple, very simple rules.
From a computer perspective... is like " Do not believe that a Nigerian prince is sending you money" or " Do not click on that file that says.. 'install-me.exe'" or "send your bank password over an email".

I do believe that from this we are going to recover, be better humans, listen, and prepare our lives to be aware of what we are doing, I certainly hope so, that this zero exploit vulnerability and all the enormous cost in lives is worth something.

To learn to be prepared, to trust, to listen, to forget once and for all that is not just about us individually and is about us as a whole.

Of course this post is a rant, a rant from a security guy that just want to be better every day and that learned so much during this year, so much about me but also about the world around me, but it's seeing so much pain, and bad decisions being made day by day, by the people the suppose to protect us.

I will end this rant with a question.

What you learn this 2020 ? Good or bad...what this hack to society teach you.?

Stay safe, keep safe, keep learning.

Top comments (1)

perpetual_education profile image
perpetual . education

We learned that most websites are failures.

You can stuff a bunch of crap into a template and drag and drop stuff around... but with bandwidth is tight because everyone is watching netflix all day - and when the website doesn't say any important up-to-date information - that it really doesn't do it's real job for the company.

"Web design" is a perversion - and "making a website" - is a horror. We MUST bring back normal thoughtful design thinking that isn't guided by fear. Our government sites (That should be EXTREMELY easy to use and accessibly to everyone) are a total mess.

It seems that most businesses and people have seen just how close to the edge they really are. In the US - almost everyone - (even the rich people) have leveraged most of their stuff/money at all times - in a way that a 3-month shut down just totally destroys them. There is a lot of month-to-month money-management. Corporations can just kinda shut down without much responsibility for their workers - and the people generally have kinda let go of their local economies. The idea that 'business people are bad' and that making money is for selfish people - has given way to a situation where even the most kind well-meaning people are dependent on the system they claim to detest or avoid. It's probably a good wake up call! If we don't design better systems - and create meaningful businesses with value for our communities (ourselves!)- then we have no power - and we'll be at the mercy of whatever companies do take charge. We'd rather bake bread than move boxes for amazon. Why do we send water from New York to California - and water from California to New York? It's more lucrative for the common person to just do things right. Why work at McDonald's when you should be able to make more money running your own little burger stand?

We wrote an article that we thought we be helpful for our community - and spent a whole dedicated week to figure out how keep local business afloat / but when we shared it - we were mostly just told "Thinking that through right now isn't something we have time for" or "It's already hard enough. Why are you kicking us while were down" types of things. : /

It seems like having some normal - clear information about your business status on your publicly accessible website makes a great deal of sense... but - our web has been split up. Some people just use instagram as their main 'web' - and ignore everything else. Facebook and all that stuff are more clearly than ever - dividing us instead of bringing us together in any form of "social network." Google just says "closed" for everything. Why do we need caviar and postmates - when you could pay the dishwasher (who's out of a job) - to drive the food? Caviar takes like $30 a delivery! For a dishwasher - just 3 deliveries a day would be more than their regular salary!? It's a wonder that anyone stayed in business before COVID.

It will probably be all OK - and no one will learn from it / except maybe the businesses based in exploitation. But - maybe some of this "neighborly bartering" and sharing that's happening around town will stick. We hope so.

That's what we think (tonight).