"Cyber strategy" - Jesus wept !

The drivel continues here.

This is a priority for the Minister of Communications in a country with the 2nd worst Broadband penetration in the EU ( Including the accession states !) My head hurts :confused:

Therein lies his cunning plan!

We shall go from 2nd worst to worst - by not repairing exchanges, DNS databases, etc. and who then would want to attack us?


Begs the question: what consultants are being paid by the Department of Communications lately and does our dear Minister realise that he knows less about it than the average 15 year old at this stage?

Ryan is worse than a moron , not all morons are arrogant witless prattlers too :frowning:

Resistance is futile!

Well I’m just spit-balling here… but I have a funny feeling that the most suitable consultants, will either turn out to be some newly graduated IT students who just ‘happen’ to be related to FF TDs; or else they’ll be employed by some incredibly expensive consultancy firm will a long history of such studies, who also just happen to have some vacancies coming up on the board right after the next General Election :nin :nin

Which bunch of robbing bastards was it ‘consulted’ on PPARS again ? :angry: :angry:

What’s the odds this ends up being being turned into yet another attack on on-line privacy by the government. We already have one government institution (RTE) attempting to extend its licensing tax to internet subscribers in this country, can there be others far behind? We have another government institution (COMREG) acting as a spanner in the works.
How about some joined up thinking to get real broadband working fully across most of the country?

While we are at it could not most of the form filling done in the dole offices be done online by the applicant, who just has to go to the dole office and review it with a person, it would cut done on the delays and stress for all parties massively and cut costs as well…

Anyway there should be no need for new legislation behind this all that is needed is an assessment of the threat and resources in place to mitigate the problem. I would expect that the administrators for the Revenue Online Service (ROS) have already got plans and resources in place to deal with such attacks, since this is probably the only revenue generating site for the government.

The solutions are already available in the private sector to handle such “cyber-attacks”, any legislation that the government produces in response to this can only be to enhance their control of the medium or interfere with privacy, so be wary.

Bull Information Systems Ltd & Deloitte were the firms involved and while I think there was some piss taking on this project the major failure as is often the case in such projects was to properly define business requirements at the outset, that and trying to implement any scheme in the financial morass that is the health service in this country is bound to lead to a bad outcome.

Where the hell is this nation wide broadband we were promised? Wasn’t 3 paid a bundle to implement this roll out…

Anyone know what’s happening?

Their Planning application for a mast in Co. Clare was turned down last week because of proximity to Shannon Airport. The newspaper reports said it was to be part of the roll out of broadband for the sticks. Assume, perhaps dangerously, that similar is happening in Mayo, Kerry, Donegal etc. etc.

Have found Ryan to at least be very knowledgeable on the energy portion of his portfolio and generally seems to me to be doing a lot more in comms/broadcasting etc. than any of his predecessors. Don’t agree with all of his policy decisons but at least he is making some, which is a nice change. It worries me with the amount of abuse directed at both green ministers whilst folk seem to get less enraged with constituency milking gombeens who do nothing whilst ministers. :frowning:

Just as a point of information I am informed by those who know better than I (some friends in tech support who have no dog in this fight) that the problem with our slow speeds certainly doesn’t stem from our exchanges. Apparently our exchanges are absolutely top-knotch, bleeding edge stuff. The envy of many other countries I’m told. Some of the stuff is so bleeding edge its still experimental. The problem is the network of cables. What we need is fibre optic. But what we have is vastly-out-of-date copper wiring.

A small personal experience on the quality of the switches in the exchanges.

I did everything to move from my previous address, as the only company with switches in the nearby exchange (which also serviced a large industrial estate, who are driven mental by the lack of proper broadband) was Eircom and they only would do contended ADSL connections.

Moved address to one covered by a different exchange and switched provider. Uncontended ADSL 2+ connection. Eircom would still only offer contended ADSL in this exchange.

There may be some cutting edge stuff out there - but it depends on who’s offering it and where.

I agree that FTTH is where we should be, but I’m not quite convinced that the copper is as bad as some say it is.

Eh , not really .

About half our exchanges will do ADSL2 and half will only do ADSL1 ( up to 8mbits)

The majority of ADSL2 exchanges are really small recently enabled ones along with some very large ones in really big towns.

In Galway places like Leenane and Ballyconneely and Ahascragh are ADSL2 but Loughrea Gort Oranmore and Athenry are ADSL1

There is no plan and no money in place to bring all exchanges to ADSL2 and if there were it would take years .

The wiring is a pure lucky dip situation, the best way to get it upgraded is to rip out substandard wiring and to get the scrappers to collect in the dead at night …then you get your upgrade :smiley:

Asking Eamon Ryan for help is akin to giving a vampire a job in a blood bank :frowning:

Its 1995 again!

Actually I believe everyone had a piece of PPARS - it was a bit of sop to all of the big companies offering IT consultancy. Deloitte had the project management chunk, and took most of the blame as a result, but there was design and/or implementation across all the other big players.

Not sure where this second worst come from, perhaps in pricing.

comreg.ie/_fileupload/public … eg0950.pdf

In Broadband penetrations we’re average amongst the EU27. Bit worse when it’s just fixed line but still not too bad.

We’re not that bad any more. Our development of houses and estates in the middle of nowhere that doesn’t help suppliers.

But in fairness leaving Eircom’s line rental rip-off aside our broadband is pretty reasonable now. If people knew what they were buying they’d find there’s probably a lot of better choices for them.

For instance I know someone who’s bought in wireless broadband from Digiweb because she wanted wireless in the house, while keeping her own landline phone. This is in the city and on an ADSL2 exchange which Smart supply broadband from. Partly and poorly informed customers aren’t helping our stats much.

I’ve no time for the Green’s or Ryan, but as someone who works in this field, its something thats got a lot of focus in the last couple of months since both the US & UK have launched highly funded groups looking purely at cyber security.

But yeah, we should sort out the basics first, and leave the big brother routine at mobile network lawful interception until we can walk at least.

Hello All …

I’m a long time reader of the pin, however this is my first post.

I have to say I think Eamon Ryan is getting a very hard time on this thread for doing something that should of being done years ago.

As someone involved in the security industry I would imagine that the long term aims of the department will be the following.

  • appointing someone to coordinate government bodies cyber security efforts, possibly encourage more government departments to certify to ISO 27001
  • fund an Irish Computer Emergency Readiness Team, currently this is being done by a group of volunteers, hopefully this group will be supplemented with full time staff.
  • Engage with industry to encourage best practices approaches to Information security, ensure that as a country we can react to the latest threats.
  • Possibly recommend breach notification laws (we don’t have any).

The country has gone through a pretty bad patch over the last few months in regard to cyber security. What happened with the DNS servers at Eircom in July was a disgrace. The integrity of the data being sent from the eircom dns servers was compromised. DNS is akin to a directory enquires services for the internet. ie you ask the enquires service for the number for a place, it returns the proper telephone number, imagine what would happen if the enquires services started to give out the wrong numbers by a malicious person, trust me this is very very bad. For those of you with a technical interest, google “kaminsky dns”.

  • Given that the tender is coming from the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources its hard to believe that this project will incorporate any thing do with lawful interception. That would be handled by the department of justice. To the contrary this project should enhance the privacy of Irish people in cyber space.

  • I don’t believe its a fair comment to say that this project should be delayed until the country has 100% broadband access. What is the point in having a broadband access if you cant trust the integrity of this service ? Its hard and expensive to retrofit security into a system.

  • I guess most people think that people involved in security are over paranoid. All I can say to that is that its hard to appreciate these risks until you have seen what happens when security is breached.


I imagine there are many years of reports and memos within the minister’s department warning of catastrophic events like the DNS poisoning and DoS attack on Eircom.

Anyone who has written them would have watched in horror at the events of the last month.

Now there’s talk of a cyber security policy?

I’m afraid I have a pinch of salt to add to my Eamon Ryan collection:


All very true, but the question is: Do you believe that commissioning a report that will have any impact ?

You don’t fix IT security issues by having politicians form committees or writing reports. If you want to fix security issues you hire the best you can afford & you give them the power to make the necessary changes & if they fail you fire them. Pretty much the same with fixing any issue.

If the minister was serious about protecting the states IT infrastructure the first thing he’d do is put it all under the control of one body & then he’d ask the americans nicely for a copy of their DOD security guidelines & implement them.

Of course there are very few experts that would take up the job, because they would probably end up in a padded cell after two weeks of working with 47 different departments all of whom think they have the best system & in reality none of them do.

Writing a report, or a Strategy document is pissing on a forest fire. Until you start cutting down trees & backburning you’re just codding yourself it’ll make any difference.