Five Years Ago

By Rich
From WORLD TRADE CENTER Gordon McCannel Aamoth, 32, New York, N.Y. Maria Rose Abad, 49, Syosset, N.Y. Edelmiro (Ed) Abad, 54, New York, N.Y. Andrew Anthony Abate, 37, Melville, N.Y. Vincent Abate, 40, New York, N.Y. Laurence Christopher Abel, 37 William F. Abrahamson, 58, Cortland Manor, N.Y. Richard Anthony Aceto, 42, Wantagh, N.Y. Erica Van Acker, 62, New York, N.Y. Heinrich B. Ackermann, 38, New York, N.Y. Paul Andrew Acquaviva, 29, Glen Rock, N.J. Donald L. Adams, 28, Chatham, N.J. Shannon Lewis Adams, 25, New York, N.Y. Stephen Adams, 51, New York,

Almost Forgot to (Virtually) Smash That Hard Drive

By Rich
A few months ago I picked up a Western Digital external hard drive at Costco since my MacBook’s internal drive was a bit stuffed with digital photos. The WD drive is a pretty nice USB drive and really portable. The problem? I started having some intermittent failures on the drive. Since this is where I now keep my wedding photos (backed up somewhere else, of course) I decided to return it before it totally died on me. I got the replacement drive, packed up the original, and heading to the shipping store… … where I realized I hadn’t wiped

It’s All About the Users (Interface)

By Rich
I’m sitting in the Martini Monkey in San Jose airport, by far the best airport bar in history and possibly my favorite bar anywhere in the US. This place is a seriously funky oasis for those of us banished to the purgatory of airport terminals and solitary $10 crap beers in our hotel rooms. Okay, I might be on my 2nd-ish beer. I just spent the past two days working with clients out in the Valley area. Both are security startups, both are in pretty exciting markets, and I’ve worked with both for a while now. One is about

Security is My Business, and Business is Good

By Rich
It’s been a while since Richard Stiennon and I worked together, and I’m learning one of the more enjoyable aspects of blogging is the opportunity to pick on him again. In a post today over at Threat-Chaos Richard states, Most of the premise of this week’s Security Standard conference in Boston appears to be that CIO’s, CSO’s and IT security practitioners have to treat security as a business process just like any other. My perspective is that treating IT security like a business process is like treating a tactical military strike force as a business.

Mac Wi-FI: Gruber Needs to Let It Go (and Maynor and Ellch Should Ignore the Challenge)

By Rich
Last Friday I was packing up for a weekend trip with my wife to Tuscon when my faithful RSS reader chased me down with the latest post on Daring Fireball. I ignored it over the weekend, but think it’s time for a response. John Gruber, ever the poker player (his words, not mine) issued an open challenge to Dave Maynor and John Ellch to crack a stock MacBook. If they win, they keep it. If they can’t break in, they pay Gruber the retail price. Today John Gruber followed up with this post, upping the ante a bit

Disclosure Humor

By Rich
Really amusing considering our current discussions: How to Handle Security Problems in Your Products This is from Thomas H. Ptacek who’s blogging at I’m not sure how old it is. Ptacek seems to think I’m smart (which I’ll never argue with) but have nothing new to say on disclosure. He’s probably right, but since we still don’t have industry consensus around disclosure there’s still words to be written, and old thoughts to be repackaged in new ways. This is a pretty old debate; one where I don’t expect resolution just

Totally Off Topic: A Very Sad Day

By Rich
There are very few genuine, passionate people in this world. Today, with the death of Steve Irwin, there is one less. Steve was a personal hero of mine. Not because of any crazy stunts, but because of his integrity, honesty, and utter dedication to his family and what he believed in. This is just a terrible loss and the only ones that matter now are his family. Although I never met Steve I was fortunate enough to visit

Just a Spoonful of Obscurity Makes the DefCon Level Go down!

By reppep
Rich, It feels heretical, but I can agree that obscurity can provide some security. The problem comes when people count on secrecy as their only or primary security. Jim: “Oh, we don’t have to encrypt passwords. Sniffing is hard!” Bob: “Hey, thank you for those credit card numbers!” Jim: “What?” Bob: “Ha ha, my friend Joe got a job at your ISP about a year ago, and started looking for goodies.” Vendor: “Nobody will ever bother looking in the MySQL DB for the passwords.” Cracker: “0WNED! Thank you, and let’s see how many of your users use the

Introducing Chris Pepper

By Rich
I’d like to take a moment and introduce a new contributor to Securosis. Chris Pepper is a senior systems administrator at Rockefeller University in NYC and longtime contributor to TidBITS and various other publications. Chris is one of the most knowledgeable sysadmins I’ve ever known and the first person I turn to when I need command-line support on various *nix flavors or Mac. Chris and I have been friends since sometime near the end of high school (we went to different schools). I was insanely jealous of his Apple Newton and after years of debate he’s the

Encryption is Cheaper than Destruction

By Rich
I like to think Richard Stiennon and I are good friends. He was at my wedding in Mexico. I took him and his son skiing up at Copper Mountain where I used to patrol. For a time he even rented space in my condo in Boulder while I was slowly moving to Phoenix. We’d swap my car out at the airport parking lot; it was very convenient. But I never suspected he was so violent. Goes to show you that you can never really know someone. It all started with this post on his blog where he advocates smashing
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