Biometrics still lagging as passwords reign supreme

Posted on 27 March 2015 in Human ID, Cyber

The adoption of biometric authentication methods has not been as fast as many people had predicted, new research has suggested.

Cyber security: invest now or pay later

Posted on 20 March 2015 in Cyber

Attempting to tighten the proverbial purse strings is increasing the risk of organisations falling foul of cyber crime attacks, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has said.

New report examines risks associated with rise of biometrics

Posted on 13 March 2015 in Human ID

MPs have advised the government that it ought to publish a strategy of what it intends to do with biometric data as the technology becomes increasingly commonplace.

Cyber security vs cyber crime: the battle that will never end?

Posted on 06 March 2015 in Cyber

All the work the Government is doing to equip itself in the battle against cyber crime is making a difference, a new report has shown, but it says that there is still more work and funding required to enhance cyber security further across the UK.

Soft target: Why are SMEs falling behind on cyber security?

Posted on 26 February 2015 in Cyber

Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK are not overly concerned about cyber security, new research has shown.

The value of variety in the fight against cyber crime

Posted on 20 February 2015 in Cyber

In the war against cyber crime - a fight that organisations around the world seem to be actively involved in right now - there is a need to collaborate. More than that, if this war is to be successful it is imperative that the best talent is encouraged to enter the world of cyber security, so their abilities can be harnessed towards creating the next generation of tools and technologies to combat malicious cyber attacks.

Biometrics to boom as terror threats grow

Posted on 12 February 2015 in

The global threat of terrorism has and is continuing to irrevocably change the world around us; it is fundamentally altering the way that individuals and organisations act and think.

Cyber crime: the fastest growing threat on the planet

Posted on 05 February 2015 in Cyber

Cyber crime is the fastest growing threat on the planet, the director general of the National Crime Agency (NCA) has said.

Cyber London programme to make UK world leader in cyber security

Posted on 29 January 2015 in Cyber

A new scheme called Cyber London (CyLon) is going to be launched later this year with the view to making the UK a world leader in cyber security.

Biometrics could replace passwords by 2020, research suggests

Posted on 22 January 2015 in Human ID

As biometrics becomes increasingly commonplace in the world around us, new research has suggested that Britons could soon be replacing their passwords with biometric authentication.

White House unveils proposals for tighter cyber security measures

Posted on 16 January 2015 in Cyber

US president Barack Obama has revealed that he wishes to tighten the country’s cyber security following a number of recent attacks on US organisations.

UK’s first cyber security MBA launched by Coventry University

Posted on 09 January 2015 in Cyber

A new online master’s degree has been launched, which is aimed at boosting the UK’s cyber risk management skills in the years to come.

New cyber system to protect drones from hackers

Posted on 30 December 2014 in Defence and Security

A new system has been developed that aims to protect military drones from cyber attacks, therefore protecting the highly sensitive data that many of them store on board.

2014 Border Control & Biometrics Market Assessment published

Posted on 22 December 2014 in Human ID

A new report into the present and future role of biometrics in security settings such as border controls, has been published by Research and Markets.

Chinese cyber attacks ‘could shut down US infrastructure’

Posted on 19 December 2014 in Cyber

Cyber attacks originating from China could shut down infrastructure in the US, according to the head of the National Security Agency.

Multimodal biometrics systems becoming increasingly sophisticated

Posted on 20 November 2014 in Human ID

Border control agencies across the globe are now making increasing use of biometrics in order to allow for accurate and speedy identification of citizens and foreign travellers.

US military facing new ‘malvertising’ cyber threat

Posted on 24 October 2014 in Cyber

A series of major US military contractors have been targeted of late in a new wave of cyber crime - malware disguised as online advertisements.

Voice biometrics enjoying rise in popularity across the globe

Posted on 17 October 2014 in Human ID, Defence and Security

Governments and businesses across the world are turning to voice biometrics in order to crack down on fraud, identity theft and data or material theft.

US Army looks to create a more secure cyber space

Posted on 09 October 2014 in Cyber

The US Army has recently awarded a computer science professor an Army research grant in order to allow her to work on boosting cyber security across the organisation.

Optics, photonics confirmed as key focus area by House of Representatives

Posted on 02 October 2014 in Electro Optics

Optics and photonics have been named as areas for the US to focus on in the near future by the recently passed Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation (RAMI) Act.

Synthetic skin developed by MOD scientists to aid decontamination testing

Posted on 25 September 2014 in Defence and Security

A synthetic skin has been developed by Ministry of Defence (MOD) scientists which looks set to make the testing of chemical weapons for decontamination far more realistic.

Global electro-optics market driven by surveillance systems, report finds

Posted on 19 September 2014 in Electro Optics

According to a new report, the global electro-optics market looks set to expand dramatically over the coming few years as a result of a rise in the usage of such systems in surveillance operations.

Photonics innovation funding called for by US Senate

Posted on 16 September 2014 in Electro Optics

A draft bill introduced recently by the US Senate’s Commerce, Science and Transportation chairman Jay Rockefeller has called for more funding for optics and photonic technology across the country.

EO / IR capabilities seen as ‘critical’ for military

Posted on 05 September 2014 in Electro Optics

The military are starting to realise that electro-optical (EO) imagery and infrared (IR) imaging are critical to operations.

Cyber security contest run by US Air Force hits UK

Posted on 05 September 2014 in Cyber

A US Air Force cyber competition has come to the UK as a result of a new partnership between a US defence contractor and the UK’s Cyber Security Challenge.

US military’s ‘cyberwarriors’ trial cyberwar game

Posted on 22 August 2014 in Defence and Security

The US military’s top ‘cyber warriors’ took part in a top secret war game exercise which saw a team of active-duty troops compete against several teams of reservists.

SPIE Optics+Photonics 2014 exhibition held this week

Posted on 21 August 2014 in Electro Optics

The SPIE Optics + Photonics 2014 exhibition takes place this week until today, Thursday 21 August 2014, and hosts 181 firms showcasing solutions in optical components, laser systems and more.

Global electro optics market set to grow at 2.98pc CAGR

Posted on 13 August 2014 in Electro Optics

A new report has revealed that the global electro optics market is tipped to register a CAGR of 2.98 per cent to reach $14.03 billion by 2020.

Global drone market ‘set to double’

Posted on 31 July 2014 in Electro Optics, Defence and Security

The unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) – or drone – market is expected to almost double worldwide in the next 10 years.

On-board technology, such as Electro-Optic/Infrared Sensors (EO/IR), will play a key part in the expanding demand from both defence and civil buyers around the globe, according to a new report.

Photonics in the spotlight at global laser and electro-optics event

Posted on 11 July 2014 in Electro Optics

More than 5,000 people attended a major six-day event focusing on the development of lasers and electro-optics for use in a range of sectors from medical therapeutics to computers.

Govt ‘must learn from private sector’ approach to cyber security

Posted on 10 July 2014 in General

The British Government needs to learn from the private sector’s approach to cyber security, both in the way it tackles the issue and the data it protects, according to a sector leader.

US Army leaders highlight vulnerability to cyber attacks

Posted on 26 June 2014 in Defence and Security

The vulnerability of the US military to cyber attacks has been highlighted at a forum hosted by The Association of the United States Army Institute of Land Warfare, at which discussions were held on the best way to improve resistance to such attacks.

Have you got what it takes to defend your assets in cyberspace?

Posted on 19 June 2014 in General

A new Cyber Defence Capability Assessment Tool is to be delivered by APMG International in partnership with the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and its technology transfer company Ploughshare Innovations Ltd.

US military steps up cybersecurity investment

Posted on 05 June 2014 in Defence and Security

The US military’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has announced that it plans to maintain its investment in cybersecurity and improve the focus of its research.

SPIE DSS: Sensing Technology proves popular

Posted on 29 May 2014 in Electro Optics

Ploughshare recently exhibited at SPIE DSS, held earlier this month at the Baltimore Convention Center, the annual engineering and scientific event on optics, infrared, imaging, lasers and sensing.

US ability to counter cyber threats hindered by acquisition rules

Posted on 22 May 2014 in Defence and Security

Current acquisition rules surrounding the buying and operating of programmes to fight cyber-crime are hindering the US military’s ability to respond at the speed needed to prevent such issues, experts say.

Military satellite communication terminals open to cyber attacks, report finds

Posted on 07 May 2014 in General

Satellite communication terminals, used heavily by the US military, are vulnerable to cyber-attacks, according to a new report.

‘Deal Day’ to link military with cyber, robotics innovators

Posted on 01 May 2014 in Electro Optics, Defence and Security

This month’s ‘Deal Day’ will see the US Defense Department matched with small firms and entrepreneurs working on innovations that may be of use to the sector.

Global Military Electro-optic Infrared Systems Market 2014-2018 report released

Posted on 24 April 2014 in Electro Optics, Defence and Security

A new research report has been released detailing predictions for the future of the electro-optic infrared systems market across the global military sphere.

Better cyber security called for by head of US National Security Agency

Posted on 17 April 2014 in Defence and Security

The director of the US National Security Agency has urged Congress to pass new laws relating to protecting the country’s cyber assets.

SPIE Photonics Europe 2014 focuses on technology transfer

Posted on 10 April 2014 in Electro Optics

This year’s SPIE Photonics Europe will showcase a range of technology transfer developments across the electro optics arena, all of which are helping to drive economic vitality across the region.

National defense expert hired by UDCSI to lead new cybersecurity initiative

Posted on 03 April 2014 in Defence and Security

The University of Delaware Cybersecurity Initiative (UDCSI) has confirmed that it is bolstering its efforts to resolve cyber issues facing corporate America with the appointment of a national security expert.

Global photonics sales to outpace GDP growth by 50pc, Photonics Congress says

Posted on 27 March 2014 in

Photonics was named as a ‘key driver of innovation’ at last month’s Photonics Congress 2014, with experts predicting that the sector would enjoy an average annual growth rate of one-and-a-half times that of global GDP growth.

Global laser market set to grow, photonics event claims

Posted on 07 March 2014 in General

The global laser industry looks set to grow by as much as five per cent over the course of this year, according to new research presented at a recent photonics event.

Silicon photonics gets £6m funding to be brought to mass markets

Posted on 28 February 2014 in Electro Optics

Funding of more than £6 million has been awarded to the University of Southampton so that researchers can bring silicon photonics to the mass marketplace.

UK’s Zepler Institute explores next generation autonomous technologies

Posted on 21 February 2014 in

A range of the most technologically-advanced aerospace and autonomous developments in the UK were showcased at the University of Southampton earlier this month, drawing representatives from the aerospace, marine and defence sectors.

New photonics R&D ideas sought by UK military

Posted on 14 February 2014 in Defence and Security

The UK Government is keen to boost its photonics-based sensors for military applications and its Technology Strategy Board is due to make a call for related research proposals this month.

Ploughshare at Photonics West

Posted on 07 February 2014 in

Photonics West, the largest photonics and laser event in the world is being held this week in San Francisco, California, and will bring together a range of exhibitors and innovators from all branches of the photonics community, including developers of biomedical optics and optical MEMs.

US military electro-optic spend to hit £13.5bn over coming decade

Posted on 23 January 2014 in Defence and Security

The global electro-optic market is set to expand hugely over the coming years, with US military forces set to spend £13.5 billion on electro-optical systems and technology over the next decade, new research has confirmed.

Demand for electro-optics rising rapidly in US

Posted on 09 January 2014 in General

Such is the increasing demand for optics and photonics applications in a range of sectors across the US that The National Center for Optics and Photonics Education (OP-TEC) has confirmed new funding to encourage students to choose a career in photonics.

Biometrics taking off in airport security checks

Posted on 06 January 2014 in General

Almost 3 in 10 of the world’s airports now use some form of biometric technology or computer-aided identification, a rise of 10 per cent on 2008.

Ploughshare CEO Pete Hotten provides company introduction

Posted on 23 December 2013 in Defence and Security

Ploughshare CEO, Pete Hotten, presented recently at DPRTE, you can view and listen to the presentation on YouTube.

Military forms partnership with GM to create hydrogen powered cars

Posted on 20 December 2013 in General

A partnership has been announced between the US Army and General Motors (GM) to develop hydrogen fuel cells which will then be used to power military vehicles and GM cars.

‘No sand’ mat used for beachgoers snapped up by military

Posted on 13 December 2013 in Defence and Security

An innovation that is successfully straddling the commercial and military markets is a mesh mat that was originally designed for beachgoers and is now being used by the Australian military in combat zones.

Camping equipment straddles military and commercial use

Posted on 06 December 2013 in General

Innovator and producer of tents and sleeping bags, Cam Brensinger, has shown how a product designed for the military can be ideal for commercial use too.

Montana military wives turn military surplus materials into fashion items

Posted on 29 November 2013 in Electro Optics

A pair of military wives have worked to turn surplus military materials into new fashion items such as handbags, as well as providing jobs for others in their situation.

Soldiers to identify challenges and suggest solutions for new online resource

Posted on 21 November 2013 in Defence and Security

The Army’s Rapid Equipping Force (REF) has launched a new online platform aimed at tapping into soldiers’ expertise and seeking out innovative approaches to problem solving across the military.

Biotech innovators’ expertise sought by Defense Research Agency

Posted on 16 October 2013 in Defence and Security

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), is moving ever more aggressively into biotechnology, as it helps to fund research including a new device for medical testing, in a bid to ensure that the US never falls victim to technological surprises.

Military towing invention creates ‘magic hinge’ - what could you do with it?

Posted on 11 October 2013 in General

We have an Innovation Challenge this week - what can you do with our ‘Magic Hinge’?
Watch the video on YouTube to see it in operation…

Military focuses on energy efficient innovations

Posted on 09 October 2013 in General

The United States military is committed to lowering its carbon footprint, and has been doing so in a number of ways, from new innovations to aggressive restructuring of the current energy output across numerous military energy efficiency initiatives.

Aerospace and its place in the military and commercial spheres

Posted on 02 October 2013 in General

There is a huge level of crossover amongst the military and commercial spheres when it comes to the aerospace sector. While the military has always been keen to maintain the edge when it comes to aerospace innovation, the links to the commercial marketplace are never far away.

Wearable computers: a glimpse into the future for both military and commercial

Posted on 23 September 2013 in Defence and Security

Wearable computers are no longer confined to science fiction movies – rather they are now a realistic option for use across both the commercial and defence sectors.

Explosive detection kit created by India’s DRDO launched in US

Posted on 16 August 2013 in Defence and Security

An explosive detection kit no larger than a cigar box, has been developed by India’s Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) and is now to be launched in the US to assist with the fight against terrorism.

Planting the seed: taking innovation back to the beginning

Posted on 17 July 2013 in General

Whilst the focus is almost always on the commercial development and marketing of a product, Government research and a set of ideas contributed by the public are often behind so many of the inventions that we now take for granted.

Old military supplies turned into fashionable items

Posted on 12 July 2013 in Electro Optics, General

A female army intelligence officer is making a splash in the fashion world by recycling discarded army supplies into trendy bags.

Innovation event to be hosted by young military leaders

Posted on 21 June 2013 in Defence and Security

A conference aimed at highlighting and encouraging innovation in the military sector is to be held in Chicago in October this year.
The Defense Entrepreneurs Forum (DEF2013) will be hosted by and aimed at young, emerging military leaders. Held at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business from 12 to 14 October 2013, the event will aim to promote innovation within the military as well as collaboration with civilian partners.

Economic impact of DOD Licensing revealed in new report

Posted on 06 June 2013 in Defence and Security

A recent study commissioned by the US Air Force, has revealed that active licensing agreements between the Department of Defense (DOD) and US industry partners have been responsible for major new economic activity and widespread job creation

Dstl: ploughing into the transferable technology market

Posted on 29 May 2013 in General

The MOD Defence Contracts Bulletin recently interviewed Pete Hotten, CEO of Ploughshare Innovations, about the vital role technology transfer can play in strengthening both national defence and economic performance, for full article

High school student’s refrigeration invention could have military applications

Posted on 26 April 2013 in Defence and Security

A solar-powered refrigeration cooler, invented by a US high school freshman, could potentially have military applications

Military oxygen device set to help children in developing countries

Posted on 12 April 2013 in General

A device designed to deliver oxygen to troops without the need for electricity now looks set to have a wider use and could help save children in the developing world.

New robotics research could change the face of technology

Posted on 05 April 2013 in General

Developments in the robotics field could lead to new medical and military technology, researchers have revealed.

Military using Second-Life-Style virtual worlds

Posted on 02 April 2013 in Defence and Security

The military is using virtual worlds, such as those seen in Second Life, in an increasingly wide range of ways

Firm behind hybrid airship designed for military mulls commercial markets

Posted on 21 March 2013 in General

A large hybrid airship that was designed by a British company for the US Army is currently developing commercial applications for its transport technology.

Making use of space technology to advance medical products

Posted on 08 March 2013 in General

The European Space Agency (ESA) programme is offering global firms the opportunity to make use of space technology to advance their own medical product offerings.

Military to benefit from new shock-absorbing shoe

Posted on 06 March 2013 in General

A new lightweight, shock-absorbing training shoe has been released by military technology firm Skydex Technologies, aimed at both the military and commercial markets.

Smart Mobile Identity (SMI) smart phones in development for military use

Posted on 22 February 2013 in General

The US Department of Defense has committed to developing smartphones with Smart Mobile Identity (SMI) technology, allowing physical features such as fingerprints to be scanned in order to verify the user’s identity.

HEROES initiative aims to improve troop safety

Posted on 14 February 2013 in Defence and Security

The University of Massachusetts Lowell has announced it is to launch a new initiative aimed at developing innovations designed to improve the safety of troops.

Diagnostic tool to protect military from bioterrorism in development

Posted on 07 February 2013 in Defence and Security

A diagnostic tool which could protect soldiers from bioterrorism is amongst the inventions that are being developed as future commercial projects by Arizona State University.

The role of an MoD scientist on the front line

Posted on 23 January 2013 in Cyber

BBC Radio 4’s Quentin Cooper recently interviewed DSTL’s programme leader for support to operations, Nick Barrett, about his role on the front line. The BBC’s Material World programme was keen to find out more about the role of defence scientists who follow troops on deployments and Nick was happy to give listeners an insight.

US satellite makers welcome revision of anti-arms trafficking laws

Posted on 11 January 2013 in General

On 3 January 2013, President Obama revised the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), which, since 1999, has classified satellites as weapons.

Have camouflage experts developed a material that could make soldiers invisible?

Posted on 04 January 2013 in Defence and Security

A Canadian camouflage specialist has invented a cutting-edge material that could make soldiers invisible, by bending light around them. The new technology could also have some commercial applications if it works as the creator describes.

MOD hosts successful Marketplace for SME innovations firms

Posted on 17 December 2012 in Defence and Security

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) has held its inaugural ‘Marketplace’ event to try to stimulate more relationships between small and medium sized businesses looking to design products for the armed forces that could have commercial applications.

US Department of Defense celebrates impact of HIV/AIDS research

Posted on 11 December 2012 in General

How the department’s innovations have helped to make the concept of the first AIDS-free generation a reality.

Mind-controlled prosthetic limb developed for military gets civilian seal of approval

Posted on 11 December 2012 in General

The first mind-controlled prosthetic leg, originally developed for the US military, is being widely welcomed into the civilian market, helping those who have lost limbs to walk, climb and play sports again.

Military innovation for bone conducting headphones proves a commercial success

Posted on 20 November 2012 in General

The ongoing innovation in the bone conducting headphones market illustrates how technology developed primarily for use by the armed forces can prove popular and beneficial to civilian consumers.

Liquid body armour could have purpose beyond military deployment

Posted on 13 November 2012 in Defence and Security

The US Army Research Laboratory’s liquid body armour, for use inside Kevlar vests, means much lighter, more flexible armour that could particularly benefit female soldiers.

Military researchers closing in on breast cancer vaccine

Posted on 02 November 2012 in General

One of the most promising new vaccine development projects being led by military researchers is to treat breast cancer and the trials have produced some very encouraging results so far.

Use of military-style drones for commercial and civil purposes could become commonplace

Posted on 26 October 2012 in Defence and Security

A recent report from the European Commission (EC) and support from police minister, Damian Green, suggests that law enforcement agencies and commercial enterprises could soon be regularly using military-style drone technology.

Can military-grade materials help reduce serious sports injuries?

Posted on 19 October 2012 in Defence and Security

The families of football players all over the US are welcoming new helmet modifications that use military-grade concussion reduction technology (CRT) to reduce the severity of head injuries suffered by sports men and women.

Military grip material used in successful cycling range

Posted on 10 October 2012 in General

Materials developed for military use can have some extremely valuable benefits to sportsmen and women, once licensed for commercial use. A great example is the new Connect Power Control (CPC) material used by Prologo in their latest saddles and gloves for cyclists.

Commercial infrared applications grow, but US export laws threaten developments

Posted on 03 October 2012 in Defence and Security

The global market for infrared (IR) imaging is growing all the time and some developments have the potential to save millions of lives. However, the US’s decision to review export laws on such technologies could threaten the commercialisation of military-developed IR innovations across the Atlantic.

US federal development labs strike commercialisation agreements

Posted on 25 September 2012 in Defence and Security

A US investment company has signed ground-breaking agreements with a number of state-run technology development centres, forming the first public-private partnership aimed at commercialising the Defense Department’s research and development resources.

Public sector medical research unlocking private sector opportunities

Posted on 19 September 2012 in General

Increasingly, private sector companies are closely following the innovations and breakthroughs being made in public sector research, crossing international boundaries to look for new solutions to commercialise and bring to market.
We came across an interesting example with the Health Protection Agency (HPA)

The value in defence IP for MoD and non-defence benefits

Posted on 13 September 2012 in Defence and Security, Cyber

The Defence Management Journal (DMJ) are running a very interesting article following an interview with Graham Farnsworth from Dstl’s IP Group, highlighting the value of the Intellectual Property that Dstl produces and Ploughshare manages commercially.
Definitely worth a read: ‘Serve and Protect’

The Naked Scientists Reveal All (about Super Bainite Steel)

Posted on 08 August 2012 in

Super Bainite Steel was recently profiled on you can listen, probably better than watching, to the podcast on:

Commercialising Hidden Technologies

Posted on 20 June 2012 in Electro Optics

Yesterday I was delighted to be able to present at a Materials KTN event entitled “Commercialising Hidden Technologies”.  The event focused on uncovering research that was developed for defence and security but had uses in other markets.

Can defence driven innovation be good for your business?

Posted on 24 May 2012 in General

Imagine being able to complement your R&D department and effort with the output of over 2500 scientists.
The requirements of the Ministry of Defence range across a variety of sectors and something once developed for a clear defence purpose can deliver new opportunities for companies in civilian applications and sometimes in quite diverse areas to their origins.

Armour with holes in!

Posted on 24 May 2012 in Defence and Security

What seems like a counter intuitive development is part of a new armour system developed by the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) and licensed to Tata Steel UK by Ploughshare Innovations.

Is Necessity the Mother of Invention?

Posted on 10 May 2012 in Cyber

Meeting the demands required for military equipment and support could definitely be considered to be driven by the expression ‘necessity is the mother of invention’. Meeting this need is the Defence, Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl),  the Ministry Of Defence’s Science and Technology experts.  The resulting pool of innovative technology is being made available to a wider audience by Ploughshare Innovations.
Its company title and ethos is inspired by the Biblical reference in Isaiah 2:4 of ‘turning swords in to ploughshares’ but Ploughshare has brought this up to date in providing technology transfer services to industry for the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), find out more…