TechRepublic: Vulnerability to security break-ins stays in the spotlight

“Security breaches are a top concern for information technology
managers. And no wonder–another vulnerability through which an
assault can be waged on corporate networks and applications turns
up nearly every day.”

“All is not bleak, however. … ‘The reality is that we’re not
seeing a lot of break-ins. No one has ever intercepted an Internet
transaction en route. This is a perceived problem,’ said Jeff
Tarter, editor and publisher of the Softletter newsletter in
Watertown, Mass.”

“Keeping an eye on the PC-based office files and managing PC
access procedures is probably a better way to protect against the
biggest threats: theft, disgruntled employees, and slipshod
password use.

‘The biggest risk to your systems is not a hacker coming in over
the network. It’s the loss or theft of the laptop computer at the
airport,’ said Scott McNealy, chairman and CEO of Palo Alto,
CA-based Sun Micro-systems, at an Aug. 31 press conference. ‘The
biggest security risk is the PC hard drive.’ “

“Java co-author and Sun evangelist James Gosling claimed shortly
after a June 10 worm attack disrupted many sites using Microsoft
products that such problems are the result of Windows’ and Windows
NT’s structure, and that UNIX, Linux, and Java environments are far
more immune to similar threats. ‘Those are Windows viruses, not
computer viruses,’ Gosling said.”

“Recent history shows that the weak security links are more
often like a chain link fence, with lots of holes to address at
once. And it’s often the number, not the severity, of the problems
that keeps IT manager up at night…”

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