By Severin Walker (M3AAWG Chairman)
This February, M3AAWG awarded Cristine Hoepers, Ph.D., the general manager of CERT.br, the Brazilian national Computer Emergency Response Team, with the annual Mary Litynski Award. Now in its tenth year, this award honors the memory of Mary and the work she did to shape M3AAWG into the leading organization that it is today, one that is dedicated to fighting online abuse such as malware, DDoS attacks, election security attacks, and more.
Dr. Hoepers has been general manager of CERT.br, which is maintained by the non-profit Brazilian Network Information Center (NIC.br), since 1999. Her work in incident management, Internet best practices development, and information security training has reduced online abuse in Brazil and across Latin America, and increased Internet resilience.
From 2005 to 2013, she led the technical coordination of anti-spam efforts in Brazil, with a focus on minimizing the abuse of open proxies and open relays, as well as reducing direct delivery via botnets. Dr. Hoepers also researches the use of honeypot technology to better understand attackers’ tools and behavior. She earned her Ph.D. in applied computing at the National Institute for Space Research in São José dos Campos, SP, Brazil.
We sat down with Dr. Hoepers in San Francisco to learn more about her professional journey, discuss the state of online abuse in Brazil and explore how regions around the world are coming together to fight emerging threats.
What led you to join the fight against spam in Brazil and how that started at CERT.br?
What do you think developing nations that face similar issues in online abuse can take away from the work your team is leading in Brazil?
What would you like to see M3AAWG and LAC-AAWG (Latin American and Caribbean Anti-Abuse Working Group) work on in the near future?
How does your team convince the ISPs in your region that incident response is important? How do you lead them to making that justification?
What do you think makes M3AAWG and LAC-AAWG unique in the industry?
Photo by NASA on Unsplash