Google is fed up with shoddy online security, so they’re doing something about it

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Google knows how annoying it is to have to watch your digital back everyday with vulnerabilities popping up left and right. The Heartbleed debacle was one such issue that caused a lot of headache, and threats like that won’t simply cease to exist one day. Google’s so fed up with it that they’ve decided to create a whole new research team to start fighting back in a meaningful way.

They’re being called Project Zero, a group of researchers, experts and developers being equipped with the tools, money and time to figure out the whys, the whats, and the hows of internet security. They say they have a particular interest in targeted attacks such as those targeting human rights activists and victims of espionage.

That said, their efforts should stand to help improve security for any users who are at risk of being targeted by digital attacks. Google said they won’t put bounds on the scopes of the team either, giving them freedom to tackle the plugging of holes and vulnerabilities for any software used by lots of people.

The best part is they’re going to be transparent with all of it as they’ve committed to publishing any of their findings after vulnerabilities have been patched. A handy database right here will be updated regularly if you care to follow along.

One could analogize this situation a number of different ways. I prefer to think of it as the war on drugs — just as it is virtually impossible to stop the trafficking of drugs and all the nastiness that surrounds that world, it will be impossible to make the internet completely secure. But it’s about time someone put some real resources into trying.

[via Google]

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  • MK2

    Terrible analogy.

    • http://www.phandroid.com Quentyn Kennemer

      Perhaps you’re looking at it at micro style. I’m talking about one aspect from the macro perspective. Don’t get caught up on the details.

      • McLabia

        … That statement makes zero sense. The details are the point.

        • http://www.phandroid.com Quentyn Kennemer

          They’re really not. I really only meant to say that online threats will never stop, just like drug problems will most likely never stop. Anything else you’re taking from my statement is derived from your own thoughts, and I have no interest in that.

          • McLabia

            If you have no interest in the responses of others, perhaps you shouldn’t be reading the responses to publicly published articles…

          • Nkolsen

            And that goes for you too m8. Quentyn is clearly explaining to you why he wrote as he did. If you dont like to get commented on, dont post comments in comment area’s on websites.
            And btw i do see the analogy, and find it suiting for its purpose.

          • McLabia

            Then not only are you slow, but stupid as well. He equates this undertaking to be as useless as the idiotic war on drugs. That is not only stupid but reckless as well. Making the Internet a safe haven is absolutely nothing like banning everything labeled as a drug. The biggest thing is treating the symptoms of each. If you don’t understand that, then you’re also probably one of those ignorant portion of society that thinks cannabis is every bit as harmful as heroin.

          • Nkolsen

            Well im not interrested in turning this into a debate about how harmfull drugs are. But i can tell you that drugs are drugs, and theres a war against them all over the world. They are one of the biggest reasons why we have so much crime, NO MATTER, what drug you talk about. And it is a fight we/the police/goverments keep loosing. And thats exactly what is happening with internet security, theres too much to gain for criminals, and they always find new ways….And btw i dont see anyware anything saying that the war against drugs or internet security as uselss…..

      • Aaron Mayeux

        war on drugs causes more problems. Like prohibition did.

  • Havoc70

    Go Google, it sure cant hurt anything.

  • commonsenseamerica

    More like the war on terror. That being said it’s time for white collar crimes to get the same types of punishments. If someone commits suicide because of your actions you should get the death penalty too. (fyi i’m against the death penalty, but what’s sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander)

  • Yorik

    so.. Google starts doing the work of the NSA (and other coutnry counterparts) to determine the ways that people are being targetted, spied on etc.. I wonder how long it will be before NSA et all start subpoenaing the research..

    • McLabia

      Fair point…

    • McLabia

      However, no need for a subpoena when they claim that the research will be made public.

      • Yorik

        Agreed. But we all know that Google (as well as others) likes to keep some stuff to themselves before releasing it. A potentially far-fetched example- They would fix and patch their own services, if vulnerable, before releasing the exploit/bug to the public. NSA/whoever gets hold of that and can subpeona the research before it is made public, stifling the publication of the research, effectively making Project Zero work for the government/agencies.

        It might be a little far fetched for some people to believe, but we would all be naive to think that it hasn’t happened before and that it won’t happen again.