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October 2005

On The Radar: Tools to survive the security wilderness

On a recent visit to Alaska, where nature manifests its power on an awe-inspiring scale, the unspoiled mountains, glaciers and clear air made me think about the basics, including the basics of security. Walking across glaciers is risky and requires constant vigilance to avoid cracks and crevasses. But, with the right tools and expertise, you can navigate the treacherous landscape with relative ease. The same holds true for security. In order to gain confidence and ensure vulnerabilities don't fall through the cracks, you'll need the proper instruments. A precheck routine will provide an inventory of what's on the systems you want to protect--the OS, applications and services--and what services are visible. A good set of scripts for checking host security from the inside is also important. The Center for Internet Security (CIS), at, provides free system configuration guides and scoring scripts that cover Windows, Solaris, Linux, IOS and other platforms, and even a few critical applications such as Web servers ...

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Features in this issue

  • Security Seven Awards

    Seven winners. Seven verticals. Countless achievements.
    Education: Dave Dittrich
    Financial Services: Christofer Hoff
    Telecommunications: Edward Amoroso
    Government: Charles McGann
    Energy: Richard Jackson
    Manufacturing: Hans-Ottmar Beckmann
    Health Care: Patrick Heim
    Profiles by Michael S. Mimoso, Bill Brenner, Herman Mehling, Susan Hildreth, Mark Baard

  • Antispyware: Blue Coat Systems' Spyware Interceptor SI-1

    Blue Coat Systems' Spyware Interceptor SI-1

  • SQL Server 2005 Premieres

    Next month, Microsoft adds a star-studded cast of security features to its database system.

Columns in this issue