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October 2004

Application Vulnerability Development Language: Why is it important for security?

Picture a United Nations meeting. Sitting around a huge table is a bunch of diplomats wearing upside-down headphones (yes, I know they're called "translators"). Each delegate is among his country's political and cultural elite. He's intelligent, articulate and uniquely positioned to represent the interests of his nation to the international community. And yet, without the upside-down headphones, he might as well be deaf and dumb. It's the translator that allows him to understand and be understood. Network security is like a U.N. meeting without the upside-down headphones. We've got all these intelligent devices that perform unique and important functions, but there's no lingua franca that allows them to understand each other. Sure, they can talk to "neighboring" devices in the same way that delegates from England can talk to those from Australia and the U.S. But in the network world, most security devices are incapable of communicating beyond that. The Application Vulnerability Description Language (AVDL) is an example of how a ...

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