Information Warfare: October 7, 2002


Military and government cyberwarriors have, collectively, made several startling discoveries in the last year or so. First has come the realization that not much progress is being made to protect government and military networks using the traditional methods (of asking Congress for more money, trying to train more military network technicians or hiring more civilian consultants.) Then came the fact that about 20 of the hundreds of network vulnerabilities (poorly written software that lets hackers get inside other people's computers) are responsible for about 80 percent of the hacker attacks. The conclusion from these two items was that, we will get a lot more protection for our money if we go after the top 20 vulnerabilities. This list, like a best seller list, changes slightly from month to month, so you'll always be busy, but you'll always be blocking the easiest way in. Attempts to fix larger number of vulnerabilities tend to overwhelm the undermanned government and military Internet support staffs. As the old battlefield maxim goes, "he who tries to defend everything, defends nothing."


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