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September 2012

Reflections on changing information security trends

When I started covering security in 2000, my day consisted of combing through an inbox full of alerts from Symantec, McAfee and many other security companies, staring down big, scary subject lines about viruses, worms, denial-of-service attacks and website homepages replaced with graffiti. That was the norm at the turn of the century for a security journalist. Hackers were bums, longhairs who fit the cliché of the basement-living, pasty-looking emo kid with too much time on his hands in the suburbs. Companies didn’t have online storefronts; they were just trying to keep their branding pages up and running. Hackers weren’t making money either. They were too busy being the kings and queens of IRC chat rooms to care about stealing credit card numbers, trade secrets and Gmail credentials. Information security trends have evolved as times have changed. The Internet has gone from AOL being everyone’s baby steps into using the Web, to the Internet potentially being the next military battlefield. Twelve years literally is a lifetime of ...

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