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Old November 22 2012, 07:05 PM   #34
Crazy Eddie
Rear Admiral
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Re: I'm issuing new orders...

chrinFinity wrote: View Post
newtype_alpha wrote: View Post
Hell, for safety sake it should probably monitor their vital signs at all times and sound an alarm in sickbay whenever any of them have a problem.
Now THAT is a damn good idea!

Officer level thinking, Crewman newtype_alpha. Do you have any medical training? We have a job opening in sickbay.
Actually, it's ADMIRAL newtype. And no, my area of expertise is information technology.

Speaking of which, it occurs to me Starfleet's information warfare systems (along with electronic warfare in general) are slipshod at best. I've recently encountered a mission log from the USS Voyager where the ship's operations officer was successfully and repeatedly overridden by a two year old girl working on a keypad she barely knew how to read. In a way this turns out to be a GOOD thing since the operations officers were under alien influence at the time, but it mirrors a similar incident where an angry Hirogen was able to access the ship's comm system using a keypad in the mess hall and actively prevent the Ops officer (the SAME ops officer) from blocking his access. That also mirrors incidents on the Enterprise-D where a 20th century stockbrocker was able to not only access a comm panel to harass the ship's command officers, but was able to gain access to the bridge -- during a yellow alert, no less -- and stand there for several seconds without anyone noticing him.

Simple access controls are called for. I wouldn't advocate anything so mundane as a login name and password (although that would certainly help) but it occurs to me that shipboard sensors and user interfaces are sophisticated enough to obtain biometric data from anyone attempting to use them to confirm that they really ARE authorized to access those systems. Something as simple as a fingerprint or voiceprint analysis would at least force would-be hackers to obtain and then spoof those signatures in order to gain access, which if nothing else would give security teams a few minutes to react to potential breaches. Just for starters (of course, simply locking doors to sensitive parts of the ship is a long overdue security measure, especially for ships with children aboard).

The other side of this is that we either need operations officers who have at least basic training in information technology (or at least, enough knowledge of their own systems that they will not be locked out by children and/or aliens who otherwise have no knowledge of their systems), and as a backup, subroutines for the main computer that would allow it to automatically intercept such hacking attempts before they can interrupt bridge control.
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