Cybercrime Fighter

By: Wedge Greene

This episode of Pipeline's fictional IoT series begins at Rachael’s house immediately following the conclusion of the cyber-attack on her suburban home and her corporation, North East Control Analytics.


With the potentially lethal cyber-attack seemingly behind her, Rachael begins cleanup and getting on with her life.  Jorge, the head of Sabre Gaming and her security black hat, reports in over the house system, leaving a video-message for Rachael.

“Hey Rachael, just wanted to let you know we downloaded your full backup from the secured cloud. We've used it to flash your car and we’ve finished reloading the house system.  It checks out, diagnostics look good and you should be good to go.  However, I you need to make an onsite check of the appliances; if undamaged, I suggest flashing them to factory and letting them relearn the house and your preferences and behavior patterns.  I’d like to think they weren't compromised, but better not to take any chances.” 

Alexia, the house AI, now back online, reports using its neurolinguistics program on dog language and posture interpretation.  Using the synthetic voice of her German Shepard, it translates for her loyal dog Toby: “Toby glad you are fine. Not yet safe. Not safe.  Toby cares for you.  Pack needs you. Toby uneasy, need to patrol and check outside scents. Check for danger.  Also hurt, need care.” 

Rachael is not sure if Toby means he is hurt or he knows she is hurt.  The animal language program is unspecific on that or maybe Toby is unspecific – it’s alpha release software, still learning and not yet up to truly Touring AI.  Rachael turns to Toby, “I’ll let you outside.  Be quick.  We are going for car ride.”  Toby leaps up and capers in a circle, then heads for his dog door which Alexia opens automatically.

Next, the Alexia connects a must-answer call from Rachael's medical service. “Sorry for the intrusion Ms. Greg, but your medical diagnostics just uploaded data which indicates a significant in-home accident.  Please confirm you are OK and can communicate.” Rachael goes to the master terminal and keys the two-way video. “ I'm just fine, thanks.  We did have an accident with runaway appliances, but its under control.” 

The call center agent reads the client emotions profile from her face-tracking agent software and begins reciting a ‘calm her down’ script. This just irritates Rachael. She explains to call center agent that it was not a household accident but a cyber home invasion.  The call center agent voice recognition software, responding to the term "home invasion" as programmed, automatically begins a link to law enforcement and asks for Rachael's confirmation. 

As Rachael doesn't want anyone looking too closely at her responses during the invasion, she declines the police connection with “things are under control here, my lawyer will provide a police statement within 24 hours.”  Next, she messages her corporate insurance company.  The message initiates a background process evaluating her history and risk profile while performing risk analytics in cloud.  Based on the analysis, the system determines that special treatment is needed due to the nature of the incident and her membership in a preferential client program.

Meanwhile, the call center operator, seeing Rachael’s bloody image on screen, links in a medical practitioner and selects for medical telepresence.  I new image appears on the screen.  “Hello Ms. Greg. I’m Nurse Practitioner Joyce. Are you suffering from any acute discomfort?” Watching her side display of Rachael’s real-time diagnostics, the nurse runs through a question-answer session prompted by her medical diagnostic assistance AI which Rachel grudgingly response to. 

At the end she says, “I see no clear evidence of concussion or other serious injury, but I’ve ordered rental of a BodyGaurd concussion monitor which your local pharmacy will dispense and hook up.  That head wound needs bonding and your policy includes cosmetic reconstruction.  I’ve set up an appointment in 30 minutes at the local clinic where you maintain skin tissue.  I’ve made a scan of the wound and they should have a patch and some new hair ready for manipulator bonding when you arrive. One of our best doctors will oversee via telemed and remote control the Da Vinci Medical Assistant.  Ms. Greg, can you reach the clinic on your own or do you need us to dispatch transportation?”

Rachael responds, “No, my car can drive me there.”

She tells the Alexia to program the car for auto drive to her clinic and then to continue to her vet for Toby, who will be coming with her.  “Alexia, call the vet clinic and make an emergency appointment for Toby. Request retrieval handling from an unmanned transport. Get him an overnight stay and request that they update me via my personal agent.”  Thinking about it, she does realize that now with her nerves steadying, the pain is now quite noticeable.  She calls Jorge, “Make sure my medical records have not been tampered with. I'm sending you a one-time usage key for your review.” Then heading to the car and calling the dog, she thinks, ‘Let’s get about getting over this.’


At the clinic, she is called by her insurance representative. Offline in outpatient surgery, her communications personal agent decides to intercept the call and accepts a voice message.  Finishing up with an infusion of nano-tech anti-bruising agents, Rachael reviews the recorded voice message with the attached meeting request: 

“We at Aetna Corporate Life respectfully requests that you visit one of our physical office locations as soon as possible. This visit is required under the terms of your policy and will severely impact our ability to process any related claims if you do not visit with us.  Also, we are sorry to inform you, but given the nature of the incident, we are requesting that you seal the premises digitally and physically, and not access your home again until the forensic evidence can be retrieved.  We’ve taken the initiative of securing a suite for you at the Four Seasons per your policy, which is conveniently located just down the street from our offices.”

Rachel is not happy about being restricted from her own home, but she orders an appropriate business suit tailored to her stored configuration by Amazon Overnight Apparel. Next morning, it will be delivered by drone to the hotel. 

The following morning, Rachel is patched, dressed, and satisfied she looks in command.  She walks over to the insurance building’s entry.  Her only complaint, while wearing the attached BioGard monitor glasses, is that she cannot use her Google glasses to interface with her personal agent.  She makes a mental note to send a message to BioGaurd about this shortcoming during her inevitable satisfaction survey. She will have to wing the meeting without metadata. Not good.


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