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May 27, 2015 / 9 Sivan, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘high-tech’

US Security Expert Warns of Dangers in Israel’s Digital Plan

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

The director of a Washington-based security forum warns that Israel’s innovative plan to go digital could compromise its national security.

“There is national security and innovation and you have to find the right balance,” Cyber Security Forum Initiative chief Paul de Souza told Bloomberg News. The government plans to work with Cisco System to make Israel the first total digital country with a fiber-optic network built for Israel Electric Corp.

Cisco CERO John Chambers said last month that his company would secure the network  and make it “the best there is in security on a global basis.” The company also created a technology incubator in Israel for cyber defense startups.

De Souza warned that a failure to build a multi-layered and complex security system would allow criminals or terrorists to “harvest millions of zombies,” referring to computers that are compromised so they can be remotely controlled. “Imagine Israel with millions of zombies that have super capability and can bring down countries,” he said. “Not only can these computers attack Israel itself, but they can at the same time use Israel as a way to attack other countries in the whole false flag thing and put the blame on Israel.”

July 4, Day of Operation Entebbe, Israel Upgrades Uganda Airport

Thursday, July 4th, 2013

An Israeli firm won a contract this week to upgrade systems at Uganda’s Entebbe airport, where a daring IDF mission on July 4, 1976, rescued 105 hostages from a hijacked airplane

Trilogical Technologies won the bid to integrate and implement systems that cover manpower, vehicle and equipment serving the airport’s ground services,  according to Israel Defense.

It said Trilogical’s software and hardware products will be integrated for management of existing resources  and carrying out missions in its airspace. Its computer system will be installed for the first time in Entebbe’s luggage, passenger and maintenance departments.

Ironically, the control systems will be installed “for control and warning in the event of operational or security irregularities” according to the report.

“There is a great deal of symbolism in the date when we are beginning the project,” said Trilogical CEO Erez Lorber.

The ability of the Israeli commandos to land at the airport without being detected was the key to its success, which was marred by the death of the commander of Operation Entebbe, Col. Yoni Netanyahu, brother of the prime minister.

One of the officers on the mission, a neighbor of mine, recently told me that almost no one in the hand-picked units believed that they would take off for the rescue operation because the scheme was “beyond imagination.”

The hostage crisis began on June 27 when Arab terrorists, helped by a German revolutionary cell, hijacked an Air France plane en route from Tel Aviv to Paris via Athens and demanded the release of prisoners in Israel in return for releasing the Israeli hostages.

After a week of planning, Operation Entebbe began on July and lasted approximately one hour. Besides the death of Netanyahu, five commandos suffered injuries and three hostages were killed.

The commandos landed in the dark of night, killed 45 Ugandan soldiers and destroyed 30 Soviet-built MiGs to prevent them from being used against the Israeli force.

Israeli firms had helped build the Entebbe airport, and their possession of blueprints of the facility was crucial towards the operation’s success.

When the Israeli planes, a cargo plane rolled out a black Mercedes that was a duplicate of Uganda President Idi Amin’s vehicle.

The element of surprise enabled the commandos to eliminate opposition forces and rescue the hostages, except for two who were killed by IDF fire and a third who was caught in crossfire.

The raid has been attributed to putting a stop to the wave of international terrorist hijackings, but United Nations Secretary General at that time, Kurt Waldheim, condemned Israel for “a serious violation of the national sovereignty of a United Nations member state.”

Samsung Buys Israeli Web TV Startup Boxee

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Samsung acquired the Israeli streaming media startup Boxee for $30 million.

The Israeli business site The Marker reported the acquisition by the Korean electronics giant on Wednesday and added that Samsung will continue to employ Boxee’s 40 employees.

Boxee, based in Tel Aviv, offers a device that connects to televisions and allows streaming videos from the Internet and personal computers. It also offers media applications and social media connectivity.

Last month, it was reported that Boxee was seeking buyers or additional funding to the $30 million it has raised since its establishment in 2007.

Israel Will Be ‘First Totally Digital Country,’ Says Cisco CEO

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Cisco’s CEO touts Arab-Jewish teamwork, meet with Peres, announces an innovation venture with   Bezeq communications system, and predicts Israel will be the world’s first totally digital country.

Cisco CEO John Chambers, speaking about his company’s involvement in Israel Electric Corporation’s fiber optic venture, predicted on Wednesday, “Israel is about to become the first fully digital country in the world.”

“This is something that most countries do a little at a time; you are going to do everything at once,” he added.

Cisco also announced it is opening a new innovation center with Israel’s Bezeq communications system and its mobile cell division Pelephone and will test on Pelephone’s live production network the world’s first self-optimizing heterogeneous configuration that combines small-cell, Wi-Fi and macro technologies, Globes business newspaper reported.

Last February, Cisco paid $475 million for Israel’s Intucell company.

Chambers. who attended President Shimon Peres’ pre-90th birthday celebrations Tuesday night, said after meeting with Wednesday with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that Cisco intends to make available $15 million for funds “that support integration of Israeli Arabs, and development of innovative security technologies.”

Cisco already employs approximately 200 people in Israel and intends to hire 100 more,

Savvy Israelis Ahead of US in Smartphone Internet Use

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Israel is ahead of the United States and Europe in the use of Internet on smartphones, and Israel is almost at the top of pack in the percentage of people owning smartphones, according to Google and other market surveys.

Israel is the country that gave the world chat instant messaging, disk on-key, Waze and MobileEye, among hundreds of other high-tech gadgets and computer programs.

The smartphone came to Israel in 2009, two years after it was launched in the United States and Europe, but Israelis have made up for lost time.

Approximately 93 percent of Israelis use Internet through smartphone, compared with 83 percent in the United States, and 77 percent watch YouTube, according to Google and Ipsos MediaCT surveys, which examine habits of smartphone use worldwide.

More than 57 percent of Israelis have a smartphone, up from 35 percent last year. At even half that rate of growth, Israelis will be the most smartphone-saturated country in the world next year. The penetration in France is only 42 percent and in Germany is 40 percent.

Approximately 60 percent of Americans are estimated to have smartphones, and 62 percent of Britons have the high-tech gadget.

Israelis have the popular habit of answering phones in the middle of a chupah or Brit Mila. The new marketing surveys show that half of Israelis feel comfortable in using their smartphones at social occasions. When using the smartphones in coffee shops, more than half of the respondents said they use one hand for holding the coffee cup and the other for the smartphone.

When Israelis start trying to speak with the coffee cups and drinking the smartphones, then we knew have a big problem.

Google to Buy Waze for $1.3 Billion

Sunday, June 9th, 2013

Google will fork out $1.3 billion to buy the Israeli-based Waze social-friendly navigation app, the Hebrew-language Globes business newspaper reported Sunday. Waze’s staff reportedly will remain in Raanana.

Facebook reportedly was in front of the lineup to buy Waze, but Waze rejected the condition that its staff be transferred to the United States. Waze may also have been holding out for more money, and Google came up with the right price.

Apple had been rumored to be a potential bidder, but Apple CEO Tim Cook denied those reports.

Waze has soared in popularity, with more than 50 million users around the world, and that number is growing every day.

Google has shown that it loves Israel. In 2010, it bought up website gadget developer LabPixies for $25 million and interactive video-clip developer QuikSee for $10 million, and has set up a Google office here. Facebook, on the other hand, has closed down the Israeli operations of most of the companies it bought up.

The Waze app allows drivers using smartphone and tablet to share information on driving times and traffic situations, as well as the location of police radar traps, accidents and hazardous conditions. Based on user-shared information, it helps users find the fastest path to their destination taking into account traffic conditions and preferred routes.

The $1.3 billion price tag is more than 40 times the $30 million of financing Waze received less than year ago, three years after it was founded.  Waze’s founders will be instant multi-millionaires thanks to the Google purchase, which has not been officially confirmed.

But no one has denied the purchase eitehr. Waze told Globes “no comment,” and Google said, “We don’t relate to rumors and speculation.”

The influx of another $1.3 billion into Israel is great news for the Finance Ministry and for anyone purchasing items whose prices are based on the dollar. It is terrible news for exporters and for Israelis whose salaries come from the United States.

The influx of dollars will put downward pressure on the shekel-dollar rate, which dropped last week to 3.61 shekels to the dollar.

Last month. Warren Buffet paid out $2 billion to buy the remaining shares of the Iscar precision tool maker, and PepsiCo and Coca Cola are now rumored to be offering approximately $2 billion for the Israeli SodaStream manufacturer of machines that convert tap water into soda, and which had become an international hit.

The influx of those big bucks, along with the prospects of Israel’s exporting gas and bringing in more foreign currency, has strengthened the shekel. It also is a major headache for corporations and wage earners whose profits and salaries are in dollars and then converted to shekels.

Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer has tried to battle the drop in the shekel-dollar rate by cutting the interest rate by a quarter of a percent, twice in two weeks, and announcing a $2 billion buying binge of dollars. So far, the “Fischer effect” has been negligible and the rate has continued to drop.

Following the report of the Google purchase of Waze, the exchange rate may drop again Monday when currency trading resumes, unless Fischer buys more dollars – lots of them.

Lockheed to Build Development Center in Negev

Wednesday, June 5th, 2013

Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest defense contractor,  is establishing a development information system center in the Negev, the latest addition to a growing list of some of the largest American-based companies to set up operations in Israel.

The center will be part of the IDF Intelligence Corp’s technology campus in the Negev.

Israel has agreed to buy several Lockheed F-35 stealth warplanes.

Lockheed Martin VP global solutions Robert Eastman told Globes, “The intention is to establish a local branch of Lockheed Martin in Israel in the field of information systems.”.

“We specialize in carrying out especially difficult migration to computer systems. This requires us to be here, with the customers, every day. We have succeeded several times with this model in previous projects, and we intend to apply this model in Israel too. It includes the opening of offices, bringing in our workers, initially from other countries, hiring local workers, and cooperating with local companies.”

Lockheed Martin’s participation in the Negev center will involve adapting lines of code written decades ago, to modern computer systems. This process will sometimes be straightforward, but in other cases will require the rewriting of code.

Lockheed Martin expects to hire 100 Israeli employees for 1-2 years to set up the data center.

Eastman said that Lockheed Martin is examining other opportunities in the Israeli market, especially in information security.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/lockheed-to-build-development-center-in-negev/2013/06/05/

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