Incite 8/29/2012: Always on the Run

Wake up. Get the kids ready for school. Exercise (maybe). Drink some coffee. Write. Make calls. Eat (sometimes too much). Write some more. Make more calls. Drink more coffee. Think some big thoughts. Pick up the kids from some activity. Have dinner. Get the kids to bed. Maybe get back to writing. Maybe watch a little TV. Go to bed much too late. Wake up and do it again. That’s an oversimplified view of my life, but it’s not far off. But that isn’t a bad thing – I really enjoy what I do. I reflect at least daily on the deal I cut with Satan to be able to actually make a living as a professional pontificator. But I am always on the run. Until I’m not, because there are times when my frontal lobe just shuts down and I sit in a mostly vegetative state or pass out on our couch. There doesn’t seem to be much in between. Is it healthy? You know, running as fast as you can until you collapse and then getting up and running full tilt again? I’m no runner, but it doesn’t seem to be a prudent way to train or live. A mentor always told me, “It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon.” With ‘it’ being basically everything. Intuitively I understand the message. But that doesn’t mean anything changes. I still run at the razor’s edge of burnout and implosion, and every so often the machine fails. Yet I still find myself running. Every day. Consulting my lists and getting agitated when there isn’t structure to what needs to get done, especially at home. I’m constantly badgering the Boss for my list of house tasks every Saturday morning, so I can get running. Yet if I’m being honest with myself, I like my lists. More specifically, I like checking things off my lists. I like to feel productive and useful and getting things done helps with that. Again, that doesn’t mean that at the end of a long day or on Sunday afternoon I’m not slipping into that vegetative state. That’s how I recharge and get ready for the next day. This run, collapse, repeat cycle works for me. At least it does for now. In another 15 years, when the kids are out of college and fending for themselves, maybe I’ll have a different opinion. Maybe I’ll want to play golf, lounge by the pool, or sit in a cafe all day and read the newspaper. Or read whatever delivers news to me at that point in time, which is unlikely to be paper. Maybe I’ll just chill out, stop running, and enjoy the fruits of my labor. Then again maybe not. As I look back, I’ve been running at this kind of pace as long as I can remember. But it’s different now. Over the past couple years I stopped worrying about where I’m running to. I just get up every morning and run. Obviously I know the general direction my efforts are pointed in, but I no longer fixate on when I’m going to get there. Or if I’ll ever get there. As long as I’m having fun, it’s all good. And then a funny thing happened. I realized that I have a shot at hitting some of those goals I set many years ago. To actually get to the place I thought I was running to all this time. That’s kind of weird. What happens now? Do I set new goals? Do I slow down? Do I savor my accomplishments and take a bow? I’ll take D) None of the above. I think I’ll just keep running and wind up where I wind up. Seems to have worked out okay for me so far. –Mike Photo credits: Running originally uploaded by zebble Heavy Research We’re back at work on a variety of blog series, so here is a list of the research currently underway. Remember you can get our Heavy Feed via RSS, where you can get all our content in its unabridged glory. And you can get all our research papers too. Endpoint Security Management Buyer’s Guide Summary: 10 Questions to Ask Your Endpoint Security Management Vendor Platform Buying Considerations Pragmatic WAF Management Securing the WAF Application Lifecycle Integration Policy Management Incite 4 U Massive unpatched java flaw being exploited: First, just the facts. There is a massive remotely exploitable cross platform flaw in the latest version of Java. How exploitable? Just read David Maynor’s description of owning everything including OS X, Windows, and Linux. This is as bad as it gets folks. Here’s the drama: after FireEye posted some info, based on real world exploitations, the attack was quickly added to Metasploit and now any script kiddie can compromise nearly any vulnerable system they can get their hands on. I’m generally not thrilled when Metasploit adds exploit code for 0days without giving defenders any chance in hell of blocking or otherwise mitigating the problem. On the latest Network Security Podcast my co-host Zach mentioned that the exploit itself may have leaked from Immunity, who frequently includes 0days in their pen testing product and doesn’t notify vendors or wait for patches. Once again, we are shooting ourselves in the head as an industry because someone doesn’t like the smell of our feet. – RM Epic security research fail: You know those times when you aren’t paying attention to where you’re walking and you run into a pole? And when you get up you look around and hope no one is watching. That happened to FireEye’s research team last week when they inadvertently stumbled upon a honeypot set up by Kaspersky and made a big stink about a change in attacker tactics. It didn’t take long for the Kaspersky researchers to call them out, and within a few hours FireEye issued a retraction. As my kids say, whoopsie! But this is a manifestation of the race for something newsworthy to fill the media sites with fodder to

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