Obama can't have a BlackBerry. Should your CEO?

Information security is not as strong as you may think, and the execs with the most sensitive data are juicy targets

American business is already under cyberattack, say two security experts who served on a congressionally sponsored study being conducted by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) to give recommendations to the next president regarding US cybersecurity.

The Threats Working Group, part of the Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th Presidency, issued its final report this week, with some startling insights into the depth and breadth of that threat.

Tom Kellerman, chairman of the Threats Working Group and vice president of security awareness at Core Security Technologies, says the US government has identified more than 100 countries that use military-level cybercapabilities to help their companies gain a competitive advantage. "Many of these countries endow [their] national corporations with cyberespionage capabilities so as to steal intellectual property for the sake of economic advantage," he says.

The plain and simple fact is that technology is completely interwoven into how government and corporations operate, says Amit Yoran, another member of the Threats Working Group and a former director of the National Cyber Security Division of Homeland Security. That technology -- communications technology, in this case -- is thus a key vector into discovering, and perhaps even manipulating, the information behind key industries. Protecting those industries' competitiveness is a key part of a country's national interest, he adds.

The communications revolution that lets people work almost anywhere and share information across public and private networks has helped many businesses be more agile as barriers to knowledge work are removed. But this "de-perimeterization of business" also means there are no borders that can be defended, says Phillip Dunkelberger, president and CEO of PGP, a point-to-point encryption vendor.

Private enterprise needs to meet the de-perimeterization security challenge with security systems as sophisticated as what cyberthieves use because cyberattacks can now do tremendous damage -- including taking down utility companies and banks and rendering them unable to distribute electricity or move money.

The Threats Working Group's Yoran says we need to think of our computer network as an aquatic environment. If you don't protect the entire aquatic ecosystem, you don't stand a chance of protecting the integrity of your own data inside it, he says.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags BlackberryBarack Obama

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ephraim Schwartz

InfoWorld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?