Malware in the UbiComp world

Morton Swimmer IBM Research GmbH

While it is not the reality yet, Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp) and Ambient Intelligence (AmI) is on the distant horizon of modern computing and networking. Precursors to UbiComp and AmI can already be seen in recent developments of personal area networks (Bluetooth) and systems like the BlueRoom configurable office, to name two. The technologies fundamentally are game changers in computing, going way beyond what we've seen so far. However, very few details have been worked out in detail and it remains hard to predict which directions these technologies will eventually take amongst the various proposals currently being discussed.

In this paper, we will try to envision how UbiComp and AmI will affect security and the malware problem in particular. We will see aspects that make malware spread harder as well as others that will make it easier. Likewise, malware defence will probably become harder, even though some aspects of UbiComp will provide us with new ways of tackling the problem currently not useful or possible. We will also see how the transition to UbiComp and AmI will occur over time.


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