Author Topic: MARS Urging Members to Use Computers that are Isolated from the Internet  (Read 584 times)

Offline SCWolverine

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US Army Military Auxiliary Radio System (MARS) Headquarters is recommending that MARS members “migrate to stand-alone computer systems for [MARS] radio operations,” subject to the availability of a dedicated computer.
“The most effective way to protect against threats that come from the internet is to isolate from the internet,” McGinnis added.

“Despite a stand-alone environment, we assume that all computer systems in private citizens’ hands are infected with hostile software code of some sort and are not secured,” he said. “No amount of virus and malware scanning software changes that assumption. We can, however, isolate computers by disconnecting them from the international network in which hostile software will report and receive instruction.”
McGinnis said future versions of MARS software will check for an internet connection and will disable the software. “We understand this lock-out does not provide security in and of itself; rather, its value is in changing the behavior of members,” he explained.

Offline Chemsoldier

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Makes sense. Most amateur radio computer programs I have seen don't need constant updates and connection to the internet anyway (obvious exceptions like echolink not withstanding).

Offline Alan Georges

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No specific threats, but it looks like good hygiene practice anyway to have your backup-to-the-backup system decoupled from the most likely target.  Thanks for pointing this one out, SCW.

Offline Carl

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  This illustrates the division between  contested type Ham radio operators and serious communications operators and I have often wondered about the 'usefulness' of having so many programs ,even logging programs,that require the internet to operate...Ham radio is about not depending on other technologies and being able to perform and I often dislike the constant need for programs to "phone home" except those Voice Over Internet Programs that do make use of the medium for communications.