Dont Forget Cyber-Security
Opinion: The feds lag on cyber-security.Sept. 11, 2001, one of our nations darkest hours, was one of the finest hours for IT and IT professionals. In eWEEKs coverage following the terrorist attacks, our lead headline read, "IT puts N.Y. back in business." Financial organizations such as the New York Board of Trade, whose home in the 4 World Trade Center building was crushed under the South Tower, were doing business less than a week later because of the foresight of people such as NYBOT Executive Vice President of Operations Pat Gambaro and Senior Vice President of IT Steve Bass. IT was not the target that day; buildings and people were. In the aftermath of human tragedy, it was easy to dismiss the importance of data, storage and networkswhich are, after all, inanimate. But IT operations and corporate data continue to face a threat from terrorism that could cripple the nation. So far, its a threat that the federal government has given only token attention. We think that is a mistake.
The holes in our nations IT infrastructure are there. eWEEK reported in its Sept. 4 issue that Sandia National Laboratories has a large staff (known as its Red Teams) dedicated to finding and fixingor helping local governments and companies throughout the country to fixsecurity vulnerabilities in power, water, data and financial systems. "Its clear that the threat and risk level has never been higher for cyber-security," said Michael Skroch, leader of Sandias Red Teams, in Albuquerque, N.M. "And its not getting better."