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January 2004

Business continuity roles improve security incident management

Click to enlarge. Doubleclick to restore. Perhaps a phone call in the middle of the night: "We've got a bit of a mess here, Dave. That new worm blew our primary and backup e-mail servers out of the water, and I've had to take us off-net for an hour or two. I hope it's not longer than that. Oh, by the way, the customer care intranet will be disconnected until we can get the staff out there to disinfect about 30 or 40 machines tomorrow or maybe Monday. Is that going to be a problem for anyone?" Is this how security incidents are handled at your organization? If your security incident management is solely or primarily the responsibility of your IT managers, it's a good bet you're not adequately prepared for events that may disrupt business, or, in a worst-case scenario, shut it down. It's time to reinvent the process, from the top down. (See the Incident Response Matrix above for suggestions.) That scenario isn't at all far-fetched. Last January's SQL Slammer worm crashed thousands of networks worldwide. Last August, Blaster and ...

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