Researchers Demonstrate Cloud Computing Power Can Be Stolen from Browsers

By

As Amazon and Google duke it out in the cloud infrastructure pricing wars, computer scientists from the North Carolina State University and the University of Oregon say it’s possible to conduct large-scale cloud computing tasks anonymously – for free – by abusing cloud-based browsers such as Amazon Silk, Cloud Browse, Opera Mini and Puffin, according to media reports.

William Enck, an assistant professor of computer science at N.C. State, and his five co-authors describe in the paper, “Abusing Cloud-Based Browsers for Fun and Profit,” is a technique they call a Browser MapReduce (BMR).

“MapReduce, developed by Google, is a way to handle the parallel processing of large data sets. Browser MapReduce involves the aggregation of free JavaScript processing offered by cloud-based browsers, in conjunction with a scheduling scheme to work around the computational limitations imposed by cloud-browser providers, to perform MapReduce jobs,” Information Week reported.

As the paper’s abstract explained, several cloud-based Web browsers have become commercially available in response to the surge of smartphones and mobile devices.

“These ‘cloud browsers’ assemble and render Web pages within the cloud, executing JavaScript code for the mobile client,” the abstract said.

The paper explores how the computational abilities of cloud browsers may be exploited through BME architecture for executing large, parallel tasks.

In related news, full adoption of cloud computing continues to be hindered by innovation and security concerns. A recent study by the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) and ISACA the Information Systems Audit and Control Association revealed organizations feel the lack of innovation and security issues will hamper full adoption if things don’t change, TechZone360 reported.

The study was conducted with 250 participants in almost 50 countries around the world with representatives from 15 industry segments including service providers, consultants, integrators and users.

The most glaring result validating the lack of innovation was revealed by 24 percent or almost one in four of survey respondents stating they don’t see any or limited levels of innovation. Regarding the maturity of cloud computing, nearly all the participants said it was far from that goal in fact stating some aspects of the technology was still in its infancy.




Edited by Rich Steeves
Get stories like this delivered straight to your inbox. [Free eNews Subscription]

Executive Editor, Cloud Computing

SHARE THIS ARTICLE
Related Articles

Why Block Websites? Understanding the Reasons

By: Contributing Writer    5/6/2024

The internet is such an expansive network where every click can lead to information, entertainment, or opportunities for productivity. However, this a…

Read More

ChatGPT Isn't Really AI: Here's Why

By: Contributing Writer    4/17/2024

ChatGPT is the biggest talking point in the world of AI, but is it actually artificial intelligence? Click here to find out the truth behind ChatGPT.

Read More

Revolutionizing Home Energy Management: The Partnership of Hub Controls and Four Square/TRE

By: Reece Loftus    4/16/2024

Through a recently announced partnership with manufacturer Four Square/TRE, Hub Controls is set to redefine the landscape of home energy management in…

Read More

4 Benefits of Time Tracking Software for Small Businesses

By: Contributing Writer    4/16/2024

Time tracking is invaluable for every business's success. It ensures teams and time are well managed. While you can do manual time tracking, it's time…

Read More

How the Terraform Registry Helps DevOps Teams Increase Efficiency

By: Contributing Writer    4/16/2024

A key component to HashiCorp's Terraform infrastructure-as-code (IaC) ecosystem, the Terraform Registry made it to the news in late 2023 when changes …

Read More