Computing Profession

CFP: Cybersecurity

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The cybersecurity panel ranged from discussion of national security threats and industry vulnerabilities to petty theft of individual users.

Herb Lin and Jeff Greene emphasized that the industry status quo is not stable. Companies are being aggressively hacked and will not simply sit still. They are moving towards more active defense methods of security. Herb Lin argued that the government either needs to get more involved to organize private sector self-help, and run the risk of being seen as sanctioning questionable reverse hacking actions, or the private sector will simply move ahead with more aggressive defensive tactics without any proper oversight.

Michelle Richardson highlighted the inability of Congress to pass comprehensive cybersecurity legislation in a meaningful way and addressed information sharing as a possible path forward. John Andrew emphasized the need for clear lines of communication between the industry and the government, as there are currently too many barriers to entry for many companies to truly engage in information sharing with departments like the DOD.

Looking towards more personal cyber-attacks, Jeff Greene of Symantec highlighted that security vulnerabilities are constantly evolving and moving to mobile platforms and smaller more trusted sites, as opposed to the obviously questionable adult and pirate websites. While these are often petty thefts of a couple hundred dollars at a time, some of these operations amass millions of dollars over the aggregate.

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