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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Access Control: An Introduction To Access Control

The Problem

Your building is secure at night, but during the day there are several doors that have to be open. Anybody could walk in. What can you do?

The Solution

You need an Access Control System.

What is an Access Control System?

Access Control is an electronic security system which permits or restricts access to specific areas of a premises. It not only protects property against unwanted visitors but ensures the safety of both the property and of the people inside.

In simple terms, an Access Control System provides control of entry (or exit) through nominated doors via a control panel and some form of electric locking facility.

An Access Control System can be as simple or as complicated as you wish but in each case, the solution will always provide an easy passage for permitted persons around the building.

Door Entry or Access Control?

Door entry is commonly associated with a single door or gate, whereas access control is more suited to multiple doors or entry points.

Access Control can also incorporate a host of other features which enhance other areas of the business.

Access Control / Door Entry Technology

There are a number of ways that a permitted user can open a door that is fitted with a system.

PIN Code Entry

The most common unit is the keypad system. This comprises a control unit with a series of numbered push buttons, or a touch-sensitive pad, connected to the lock release mechanism via a control unit located at the entrance.

Magstripe (also called Swipe Card) Readers

Each entry point has a card reader and the user “swipes” an encoded card similar to a credit card to gain entry.

This technology is widely used and there are many choices of manufacturers.

Proximity Readers

Rather than swiping the card or tag, it is simply presented to a reader which typically will see the card at a distance of about 100mm. This is a fast, non-contact, method of entry.

Long Range Readers

Long range proximity readers (of approximately a meter or so) automatically unlock or open a door when it detects the card.

This is particularly suitable for compliance with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) as no action is required by the card bearer.

Smartcard Readers

For systems that use cards or tags, these cards can also carry additional information which can be used for other building services – – for example, time and attendance functions, integration with payroll systems, car park management and even vending machine applications.

Biometric Readers

A Biometric Reader system uses unique human characteristics – such as finger prints or a retina scan – to clearly identify those who are permitted access.

As there are no cards or tags which can be stolen or lost, or open to misuse, this type of system significantly increases the level of security.

What about Visitors?

You will want to welcome most of those who visit your premises, so it must be easy for them to let you know they are there.

The three most common means of attracting attention are:

• A simple door bell system which alerts your staff to the fact that there is someone waiting outside.

• An audio intercom panel which allows the visitor to have a direct conversation with a member of your staff and, if appropriate, the door can be remotely released.

• An audio intercom panel with a camera facility which allows your staff to see who wants to enter the building before permitting access.

Once access has been permitted, the visitor can either be escorted around or issued with a card or pin number for the duration of their visit.

Things to Consider

When planning an access control system, you should consider the following:

• How many entry/exit points
• Where are these located>
• Level of security desired
• The movement of staff around the building
• Method of operation
• Future growth of building
• Turnover of employees
• Disability access
• Interface with other systems – for example, the fire alarm

As with any type of security system, it is sensible to employ a company that you can trust. Make sure you use a NSI (NACOSS) approved organisation; this will ensure that your system will be designed and installed by professionals.

About the Author:

Pete Childs is the Sales Manager of Christie Intruder Alarms (CIA) Ltd, Security House, 212 - 218 London Road, Waterlooville, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO7 7AJ, UK CIA specialises in installing Security Systems including Intruder Alarms, Fire Alarms, CCTV and Access Control and Physical Security (Safes & Locks)

The ISO27001 Certification Process

Some of the most common questions pertaining to the 27000 series of standards relate to the certification process for ISO27001. This page is intended to help address some of these.

In a nutshell, the following diagram explains the logical flow of the process itself:

ISO27001 Certification Process

The process starts when the organization makes the decision to embark upon the exercise. Clearly, at this point, it is also important to ensure management commitment and then assign responsibilities for the project itself.

An organizational top level policy can then be developed and published. This can, and will normally, be supported by subordinate policies. The next stage is particularly critical: scoping. This will define which part(s) of the organization will be covered by the ISMS. Typically, it will define the location, assets and technology to be included.

At this stage a risk assessment will be undertaken, to determine the organization's risk exposure/profile, and identify the best route to address this. The document produced will be the basis for the next stage, which will be the management of those risks. A part of this process will be selection of appropriate controls with respect to those outlined in the standard (and ISO27002), with the justification for each decision recorded in a Statement of Applicability (SOA). The controls themselves should then be implemented as appropriate.

The certification process itself can then be embarked upon via a suitable accredited third party.

ISO/IEC 27001

ISO/IEC 27001
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
(Redirected from ISO 27001)

ISO/IEC 27001 is an information security management system (ISMS) standard published in October 2005 by the International Organization for Standardization and the International Electrotechnical Commission. Its full name is ISO/IEC 27001:2005 - Information technology -- Security techniques -- Information security management systems -- Requirements but it is commonly known as "ISO 27001".

It is intended to be used in conjunction with ISO 17799, the Code of Practice for Information Security Management, which lists security control objectives and recommends a range of specific security controls. Organizations that implement an ISMS in accordance with the best practice advice in ISO 17799 are likely simultaneously to meet the requirements of ISO 27001, but certification is entirely optional.

This standard is the first in a family of information security related ISO standards which are expected to be assigned numbers within the 27000 series. Others are anticipated to include:

ISO/IEC 27000 - a vocabulary or glossary of terms used in the ISO 27000-series standards
ISO/IEC 27002 - the proposed re-naming of existing standard ISO 17799
ISO/IEC 27003 - a new ISMS implementation guide
ISO/IEC 27004 - a new standard for information security measurement and metrics
ISO/IEC 27005 - a proposed standard for risk management, potentially related to the current British Standard BS 7799 part 3
ISO/IEC 27006 - a guide to the certification/registration process
ISO/IEC 27799 - a guide to ISO 27001 for health sector organizations
ISO 27001 was based upon and replaced BS 7799 part 2 which was withdrawn.

Several ISO affiliated national standards bodies have published localized versions of the standard. Generally speaking, these are simply language translations which retain the information content of ISO 27001.

The ISO 27000-series information security management standards align with other ISO management systems standard, such as those for ISO 9001 (quality management systems) and ISO 14001 (environmental management systems), both in terms of their general structure and in the nature of combining best practice with certification standards.

Certification of an organisation's ISMS against ISO/IEC 27001 is one means of providing assurance that the certified organisation has implemented a system for the management of information security in line with the standard. Credibility is the key advantage of being certified by a respected, independent and competent third party. The assurance it provides gives confidence to management, business partners, customers and auditors that the organization is serious about information security management - not perfect, necessarily, but at least on the right path to continuous, managed improvement.

Organizations may be certified compliant with ISO 27001 by a number of accredited certification bodies worldwide. Certification against any of the recognized national variants of ISO 27001 (e.g. the Japanese version) by an accredited certification body is functionally equivalent to certification against ISO 27001 itself. Certification audits are usually led/conducted by ISO 27001 Lead Auditors.

In some countries, the bodies which verify conformity of management systems to specified standards are called "certification bodies", in others "registration bodies", "assessment and registration bodies", "certification/ registration bodies", and sometimes "registrars".

ISO/IEC 27001 certification usually involves a two-stage audit process:

Stage 1 is a "table top" review of the existence and completeness of key documentation such as the organization's Security Policy, Statement of Applicability (SoA) and Risk Treatment Plan (RTP).

Stage 2 is a detailed, in-depth audit involving testing the existence and effectiveness of the ISMS controls stated in the SoA and RTP, as well as their supporting documentation.

Certification renewal involves periodic reviews and re-assessments to confirm that the ISMS continues to operate as intended.

Need For A New Anti-Virus Model

This is the second in a series of articles highlighting reasons why we need a new model for anti-virus and security solutions.

Reason #1: the Basic Model

Anti-virus software vendors still rely on yesterday’s methods for solving today’s problems: they wait for the next virus to wreak havoc and then produce a solution. That worked for a long time when a virus would take years to traverse the world. But in this fast-paced Interet-crazed world we live in today, this type of solution is no longer applicable. Now a virus can traverse the world and infect millions of computers in minutes.

In the good old days a virus traveled by floppy disk. Put a floppy in your computer and save some data to it and the virus would infect the floppy. Then unwittingly put the infected floppy in another computer and presto the new computer would become infected. (I’m skimming over a lot of detail here to make a point). So the virus’ progress was slow and steady. Anti-virus vendors had time on their side. They had the time to get a copy of the virus, dissect it, run it through a series of tests to come up with a signature string (see below for definition), put the string into a database of strings to search for when scanning your hard drive (and floppies) and release the new database to the public. Ten years ago this system worked very well.

But now everyone is connected via the Internet. Now, using email as a transport point, it doesn’t take years to gather momentum, instead it takes a matter of minutes. And here is where the model breaks. Step back and ask yourself the following question: if vendors can catch “known and unknown viruses” as their literature states, how then is it that we continue to have virus problems?

The answer lies in the fact that virus authors have been more creative in coming up with new ways to infect and wreak havoc and the software industry has not responded in kind, preferring to stay embedded in its old fashioned methodologies.

Why don’t the old ways work any more, you might ask? It’s relatively simple. Let’s go through the steps.

A virus author unleashes NewVirus via email. He mass mails his virus to thousands of people. Some, not all, unwittingly open the attachment thinking it’s from a friend or the subject is so enticing that they are fooled into opening it without thinking it’s a problem (cf. nude pictures of Anna Kournikova). The email attachment immediately starts emailing everyone in his contact list and embeds itself into his operating system so that it’s activated every time he turns on his computer.

The folks he emails in turn get fooled into thinking the email is valid and they open the attachment. Very quickly all hell breaks loose. Agencies which monitor Internet traffic see problems arising with the sudden spikes in email traffic and they begin to get calls or emails alerting them to the fact that there’s a new problem. Samples are obtained and sent off to anti-virus vendors. They pass the emails through a series of tests to analyze what exactly the virus does and how it does it. Additionally analysis is performed to extract a unique string of 1’s and 0’s to identify this attachment as none other than NewVirus. This is called the signature string. It’s important that whatever string is arrived at does not exist in any other program or piece of software; otherwise, you will get what is commonly called a false positive.

Quick digression on “false positives”: if a vendor arrives at a unique string that just happens to be embedded in Microsoft Word, then every time a user runs a scan of their hard drive, Microsoft Word will be identified as being infected with NewVirus. Users will uninstall Word and re-install only to learn that they are still infected. There will be complaints; the vendor will be forced to re-assess the signature string and re-release his list of strings and admit the error.

Typically signature strings are matched against a whole boatload of commonplace software just to protect against this occurrence, but it still happens and vendors learn to add new software to their test beds.

OK, so the vendor has arrived at a signature string. Next? Implement the string into their string database so that when their scanners are scanning they will match what’s on your hard drive to what’s in the database. After the database has been updated they release the database to their customers in what’s commonly called a “push” where they send the updates to their primary users.

If you did not buy into this service, you must know enough to log into your anti-virus vendor and update your software so that you stay current.

So where are we? The bad guy –or problem teenager- has unleashed NewVirus. NewVirus has infected thousands of computers; vendors have been alerted; NewVirus continues to infect; solutions are achieved and “pushed” to corporate clients; NewVirus continues to infect hundreds and thousands of computers; corporate clients breathe a sigh of relief and alert their users as to the new threat.

Thousands, if not millions, of computers become infected and need to be cleaned because the best way to solve the virus problem is to wait for each new virus to come along and solve on a case by case basis.

But if you sat back and said: what if? What if you categorized all the things a virus can do (or could do), built a series of computers to allow any email attachment or program to have full rein of a computer (much like it would have on your own computer – such a computer is called “honeypot”) and then analyze that computer for unwelcome behavior?

That would be a true pre-emptive strike against all malicious software. This is the behavior-based model. Such a model would actually protect you unknown viruses, along with all the known 70,000 viruses.

In part 2 we’ll discuss the risks and security failures of having distributed vendor software on your desktop.

About the Author:

Tim Klemmer CEO, OnceRed LLC Tim Klemmer has spent the better part of 12 years designing and perfecting the first true patented behavior-based solution to malicious software.

Article Source:

Risky Business: Security Software Testing

This is the fourth in a series of articles highlighting reasons why we need a new model for anti-virus and security solutions.

Reason #3: Security Software Testing
Ever ask yourself the following question as you’re standing in the aisle at CompUSA or Best Buy: how well will this piece of software work with my other programs? Probably not. There is a high expectation that whatever piece of software you buy will work acceptably on your computer and won’t infringe on other programs.

Games, word processors, spreadsheets, music players are just those types of self-contained software programs that you wouldn’t expect any trouble from. And for the most part, you don’t experience problems.

Security software, on the other hand, by its very nature is more invasive and more likely to intrude on your way of computing. First and foremost, all good anti-virus software packages install on-access/on-demand scanning. This means that every time you start up a program, every time you access a document or spreadsheet, every time you access a directory in Explorer, the anti-virus program will scan it for viruses. Unfortunately, the consequence of this is that it slows down your computer. Unfortunately still, all vendors set on-access/on-demand scanning up as the default when you install the software. They have to.

When you install security software it has to install itself in such a way that it will always have the upper hand when new programs are run on a PC. Why? For the simple reason that you are installing this software to protect you from bad software. Security software tries to analyze anything you do on your computer and decide if it is a good thing or not.

But will the software make good decisions? Will this software cooperate with other programs? Security vendors have spent years perfecting their testing and testing against enormous suites of commercial software. But they can’t test every combination of software, every different version of software (there are still PCs out there running DOS 3.0 programs). They have to concentrate on mainstream. The problem is they may have no idea that your video card in combination with those two older games you installed will wreak havoc with their detection algorithms.

We see this all the time. Users send in emails or write notes in newsgroups complaining that such-and-such a package is preventing them from installing a new game or that such-and-such version is saying that their new game is infected.

Or worse still, things just don’t work the same anymore since the software was installed. Downloads become more tedious because instead of just clicking download, now users are forced to answer questions about each download or approve downloads.
So what’s the answer? The answer as we have been touting in these series of articles regarding security software is to move to a more centralized approach. Instead of installing scanning software on your computer, install behavior-based software on an off-site testing server that receives test requests from the email server. All emails are routed through the testing server.

This then can be expanded to include web traffic that runs on a 10-second delay much like talk radio. You connect through the internet, all subsequent downloads, ActiveX controls, etc. are routed via a testing server and then arrive on your PC or are halted and removed and you receive the appropriate message.

In the time that it takes to receive a file, it can be tested, and trouble software can be detected. This approach works for detecting everything from viruses to worms to spyware. You as a user notice no long waiting, no downtime, no drag, and no incompatibilities.

About the Author:

Tim Klemmer CEO, OnceRed LLC Tim Klemmer has spent the better part of 12 years designing and perfecting the first patented behavior-based solution to malicious software.

Article Source:

Risks Of Desktop Software - 2

This is the third in a series of articles highlighting reasons why we need a new model for anti-virus and security solutions.

Reason #2: the Desktop Security Software Risks

The risks of placing software on the desktop are such that I will be breaking this article into two parts.

There are many advantages to putting security and anti-virus software on the desktop. They range from efficiency to money. Under previous ways of thinking if I can capture security and virus problems at the desktop I can prevent them from going any farther. That works well in a non-connected environment. In the connected environment it makes more sense to centralize the software and monitor connections in and out. Basically “firewall” all the appliances from each other.

In a previous article we discussed the security risks inherent with desktop software designed to be the protection layer between you and all those bad people out there on the Internet. Here now we will discuss some more mundane issues regarding the risks of putting security software on the desktop:


Drag steals clock-cycles from your processes so that it can run in a higher priority mode. Anti-virus software especially places a drag on your computer. Depending on your settings (and the default settings are usually very aggressive), every time you run a program or open a file, real-time file scanning takes place and your files are scanned for viruses. This slows down your processing. Accessing larger files takes longer. You can see a discernible lag time between when you start a program/open a file and when you can actually access it.


After the obvious issue of “drag” is compatibility. Often security and anti-virus rules get in the way of your doing business on your computer. While you may get away with using older versions of such packages as Word, Sims, Photoshop, etc. on your computer with the new XP operating system, it’s unlikely your security software will be completely compatible. Why? Many packages rely on very low-level functionality to be able to do the tasks they set out to do. Anti-virus packages have to be able to operate at a level closer to the hardware than most packages. They need to do this to prevent virus software from taking precedence from them. While many packages offer backward-compatibility the opposite is not true: forward-compatibility. There are several reasons for this: a package written for Windows 98 will not anticipate all the changes to the operating system that are implemented for Windows XP. While your Win98 anti-virus program may work under XP, it won’t work at its peak performance. It can’t. It’s just another reason for centralizing your security. By siphoning all your traffic through a security screen at your ISP, for instance, you offload the need for updates and staying up-to-date on your security software. This then becomes the job of the service provider.


Having the software on your desktop means you are responsible for maintaining that software. In the case of office productivity software or image editing software, if new versions come out with features you’re not interested in, you don’t update. With new viruses appearing on the landscape every day, you can’t afford not to continually update your software. If you don’t update for a month or two, you run severe risks of infection. You also will incur potential long update cycles as your software has to be upgraded to handle all the new threats.
This makes the desktop these days a somewhat ineffective solution. Nearly two-thirds of all the PCs that have anti-virus protection installed do not update their definitions regularly. These PCs might as well uninstall the software for all the good it’s doing them.

Lost Time

As mentioned in the above discussion, you can lose considerable time if you don’t update regularly. Long intervals between updates can translate into long update cycles. If you have a slow connection to a vendor, your down time is much longer as you have to wait for the files to be downloaded and then you have to wait for your software to update itself.


The better solution is to move to a centralized solution in which all the software, all the updates are the responsibility of the service provider. You pay for the service of having your email cleaned before you receive it. When email arrives at your service provider’s mailbox, it is checked for malicious tendencies and stripped if bad. You notice no long waiting, no downtime, no drag, no incompatibilities.

About the Author:

Tim Klemmer CEO, OnceRed LLC Tim Klemmer has spent the better part of 12 years designing and perfecting the first true patented behavior-based solution to malicious software.

Article Source:

Risks Of Desktop Software - 1

This is the second in a series of articles highlighting reasons why we need a new model for anti-virus and security solutions.

Reason #2: the Desktop Security Software Risks

The risks of placing software on the desktop are such that I will be breaking this article into two parts.

Fundamentally we think of having software on our desktops as a good thing. I love downloading or installing new packages and seeing what new creative things people do to the user interface or what they do to make certain aspects of my life easier or more fun.

But there are problems inherent with software that resides on the desktop, especially security software. All developers will know what I mean. First and foremost, desktop software can be reverse engineered. What’s that mean? Have you ever inadvertently double-clicked on a file and had garbage show up or seen something that looks similar to this?

The old hex dump. Programmers will know it well. We actually spend a good deal of time trying to read this stuff. Basically, if there are programs that can (and do) turn instructions like the following

If UserBirthDate < “01/01/1960” then
IsReallyOld = “Yes
IsReallyOld = “No”
End If

into something like the picture above, then the reverse is true: people have developed software that can take that gobbeldy-gook in the picture above and turn it somewhat into the if-statement I wrote out. The reversing software won’t know that I had an item called UserBirthDate, but it will know I was testing for a value of January 1, 1960 and it will be able to say that based on that value I set another item to Yes or No.

So now we install our fool-proof anti-virus software on our desktop (or our firewall for that matter). Well, so too can a virus author. And that virus author or hacker will also have gotten a copy of the latest reverse-engineering software from his local hacking site. He now goes upon his task of reverse-engineering the software and then trying to decipher the results. It’s not easy but it can be done. Unfortunately, vendors know this and understand this as an acceptable risk.

The problem here is that your security software is at risk. If your vendor codes an error, the virus author can and will detect it. For example, if your vendor should exclude a file from scanning, it’s possible the virus author will figure out which file (or type of file) that is and bury his code there. If the vendor excludes files from scanning or heuristics, it’s possible that virus author will figure out a way to corrupt that file.

That being said, there are other risks. As we have said, once software is on the desktop it affords virus authors an opportunity to reverse-engineer security software. The knowledge that reverse-engineering provides is invaluable to a virus author when building his next software attack. Third, virus authors can learn where the anti-virus vendors put there software and put the links to their software (directory folders, registry entries, etc.). This too is invaluable information. In fact, in some ways it teaches people intent on writing malicious software clues as to how to infiltrate the computers’ operating system, where registry entries need to be made to force software to be loaded every time a computer is started, etc.

This information is generally available all over the web and in manuals for operating systems, especially manuals on such subjects as the Windows Registry. But having the software teach you where things belong to be effective is powerful knowledge.

Lastly, and perhaps most significantly, is the issue of forebearance. The anti-virus vendors usually know more about the potential exploits inherent in programs than virus authors but they are bound by the fact that should they try to prevent them before the exploits occur, they could be branded as irresponsible for teaching virus authors about these very exploits.

For example, when Microsoft first released the macro capabilities of Word, anti-virus vendors immediately realized the potential for danger in macros, but they were handcuffed. If they released software that disabled macros before the first macro virus was ever released, they would signal to virus authors the inherent destructive powers of macros. They chose instead to wait, handcuffed by the limitations of desktop software.

Until the Internet there really has been no better medium for delivering virus solutions than desktop software. It was relatively inexpensive to deploy (either market the software and sell it in stores or provide free downloads on bulletin boards and web sites). It is, however, expensive to keep updated in terms of time and effort, even with automated update systems.

The Internet caused several things to happen: by becoming a powerful medium for sharing files, whole families of viruses disappeared practically overnight (boot sector viruses, for example); by becoming the option of choice for sharing files, it was easier to infect a single file and have thousands download it.

A better solution is to place the security software in an offsite appliance of its own making. All Internet, intranet, networking connections flow through the appliance.

Selling off the shelf hardware appliances with built-in security software is better than a desktop software solution but it still suffers –to a lesser extent- from the pratfalls that desktop software falls prey to.

Even better is to create a service that a 3rd party vendor manages in a secure environment. In such an instance both the software and the hardware are away from the prying eyes of the malicious software authors. This further reduces the opportunity for malicious authors to discover the tricks and techniques employed by the security vendors to protect you.

About the Author:

Tim Klemmer CEO, OnceRed LLC Tim Klemmer has spent the better part of 12 years designing and perfecting the first true patented behavior-based solution to malicious software.

Article Source:

Careers In Information Security Course

Business processes depend a lot on data and information. Even information is equated with power and money. To preserve their valuable resources, big businesses require computer security professionals. Studying Information Security Course is the systematic approach to learn the hacking tricks in order to protect network users from hackers, malware, spyware, Trojans, hostile applications and viruses.

Information security deals with several ‘trust’. Though it is not confined to computers, today, most take information security for internet and computer security as computers have found utility in most of your processes. Information security applies to all aspects of safeguarding or protecting information or data, in whatever form.

There are cyber terrorists everywhere. And in the cyber world you will face the smartest of them as crackers (black hat hackers). The network threat is increasing day by day, so does the demand for qualified Information Security Professionals.

Information Security Course is lucrative for its career prospects and growth. On successful completion of course one can find good jobs in corporates as Chief Privacy Officer or Chief Security Officer.

However, to excel in IT Security, you should have that curiosity and programming skills.

The Need for Information Security Course

With the increased use of Internet in our day to day life, a virtual world has been created with immense possibilities. But this virtual is sometimes prone to real threats like hacking, cracking, theft etc. In such a scenario, Information Security holds immense importance. At this time when the businesses are going global and processes are controlled over network, there is a growing need for professionals to ensure network and data security. It will enable the tech-savvy people and professionals to address the emerging network security issues. Let’s discuss the following three major needs for information security course.

1. The development of information technology (IT) and increase in the number of open network bring various risks of interruptions, theft or alteration of data, impersonation etc. The computer systems are rapidly becoming critical.

2. If these risks occur and cause service interruptions, not only could the business of individual financial institutions be adversely affected, but the entire settlement system could be impacted. It is vital for each financial institution to become thoroughly cognizant of the importance of information security, to ensure sound development of the financial services sector, while reaping the benefits from the remarkable advance of the IT revolution. The future belongs to managing risk systematically throughout the organization in line with each situation, under the active involvement of management.

3. So there is much importance of information security and measures to assist financial institutions in implementing appropriate information security countermeasures and safeguards.

Benefits of Information Security Course

The basics of this course help you analyze risks to your networks and systems. Then you learn the steps to take in order to select and deploy the appropriate countermeasures to reduce network threats to your system and/or network. IT security course helps you:

• Analyze your exposure to information threats and protects your organization's systems and data.

• Reduce your susceptibility to an attack by deploying firewalls, data encryption/decryption and other countermeasures.

• Manage risks emanating from inside/outside the organization and from the Internet.

• Protect network users from malware, spyware, Trojans, hostile applications and viruses.

• Identify the information security risks that need to be addressed.

• Crack passwords.

• Restrict unwanted accessing of your computer and/or network. Find out system vulnerabilities.

• Preventing unwanted network access with a personal firewall. Guard against network intrusions.

• Discover security best practices.

• Build a secure organization.

• Ensure network confidentiality.

About the Author:

The author is an acclaimed academician in technological subjects. After retirement he is working as a guest faculty in Canada and writes on network security issues. For more information please visits us at:
Read more articles by: Rose Mathew

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A Look At Information Technology Security For 2007

The world of computer security is a fascinating aspect and 2007 is not going to be any different, but it will be more interesting with the release of Microsoft Vista.

Large companies are looking to tighten the noose around those bad hackers, consumers are demanding more security and more privacy for there home computers, and who wouldn’t, credit card fraud and identity theft has not decreased it has only increased.

Hackers who like to hack into bank accounts are going to have a harder time doing that. Some online banking companies are asking there customers to take a further step in the login process when logging into there bank accounts. For example, some banks are asking there customers to enter their user ID on one page and then enter their password on the next page; this makes it more difficult for hackers. But don’t ever feel like you are safe, keep your guard up and don’t fall for any phony emails that ask you to go to a fake look a like bank website and enter your user name and password. If you do get one of those fake emails call your bank first, and ask them if they sent you the email, and you can also forward the email to the banks technical support team.

Thanks to companies like Webroot there are programs that can help you keep your computer secure and free of spy ware and ad ware, with their Spy Sweeper software which I highly recommend. Webroot also offers a great firewall that your computer should not be without. Go to AME Computers Spyware and Malware page for more information on these great products.

Another good move toward security and spam is that there are some ISP’s that are offering free spam filters, this helps cut down on the amount of junk mail reaching your inbox. The newer version of Outlook has built in junk mail filter, but what’s the point in having a filter if you have to go and filter through the spam filter that Outlook provides.

The flip side to all of this is the cost to consumers. Spyware and viruses can cost companies, and the average consumer thousands of dollars a year. Companies implementing new security hardware pass on those expenses to there customers, so it is not good for the consumer or the business. Microsoft Vista operating system has some built in features to help keep you safe; however there still may be a need for third party software to protect against spyware and viruses.

It’s a never ending battle between the good guys like Webroot and Lava Soft and the bad guys like the hackers and spammers. Do your part and fight the good fight.

About the Author:

Anthony Elias has been in the information technology field for over 10 years. If you need more information on computer software, hardware, networking spyware, and malware please visit us at

Read more articles by: Anthony Elias

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Computer Security - What Exactly Is It?

Although the term 'computer security' is used a lot, the content of a computer is actually vulnerable to only a few risks unless the computer is connected to others on a network. As the use of computer networks (especially the Internet) has increased dramatically during the past few years, the term computer security is now used to describe issues referring to the networked use of computers and their resources.

The major technical areas of computer security are confidentiality, integrity and authentication/availability.

- Confidentiality, also known as secrecy or privacy, means that the information you own cannot be accessed by unauthorized parties. Breaches of confidentiality range from the embarrassing to the disastrous.

- Integrity means that your information is protected against unauthorized changes that are undetectable to authorized users. The integrity of databases and other resources are usually compromised through hacking.

- Authentication means that an user is who he claims to be.

- Availability means that the resources are accessible by authorized parties. Examples of availability attacks are the 'denial of service' attacks.

Other important things that the computer security professionals are concerned about are access control and nonrepudiation. Access control refer not only to the fact that users can only access the resources and services they are entitled to, but also to the fact that they can't be denied to access the resources they legitimately expect. Nonrepudiation means that a person who sends a message cannot deny he sent it and vice versa.

In addition to these technical aspects, the concept of computer security is very large. Computer security's roots are drawn from disciplines like ethics and risk analysis and the major topics that are concerning it are computer crime (tries to prevent, detect and remedy attacks) and identity/anonymity in cyberspace.

Although confidentiality, integrity and authenticity are the most important things when it comes to computer security in general, for everyday internet users, privacy is the most important one, because many people think that they have nothing to hide or the information they give doesn't seem sensitive when they register with an internet service/site.

But remember that, on the internet, information is very easily shared among companies and small pieces of related information from different sources can be linked together to form something alot more complex about a person. Because of this, nowadays, the ability to maintain control over what information is collected about them, who may use it and how it can be used is extremely important.

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