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September 2004

Security practitioners should demand security intelligence sharing

Here's a paradox we constantly deal with: Security is dependent upon communication, yet few are willing to talk about it. Security practitioners are among the tightest-lipped corporate beings in the world. Sure, put a bunch of propeller heads in a room together and they'll bad-mouth every Windows vulnerability they've ever come across. But don't expect specific, meaningful details about their companies' security programs. There are good reasons for shutting up. If you spill the beans about last week's security incident, you run the risk of diminishing shareholder and customer confidence--and getting fired. If you talk about your security architecture and strategy, you may reveal vital information to miscreants and hackers. And, if you boast about your security, you paint a big bull's-eye on your enterprise. Yet, when Information Security examined the state of critical infrastructure security (see "Mission: Critical"), we found that the key to protecting digital assets, and, ultimately, national security, is the open and ...

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