Pick Your Poison

Andrew cut his teeth as a systems administrator at the University of California, learning the ins and outs of server migration, Windows desktop management, Unix and Novell administration. After a tour of duty as a team leader for PC Magazine's Labs, Andrew turned to system integration - providing network, server, and desktop consulting services for small businesses throughout the Bay Area. With eWEEK Labs since 2003, Andrew concentrates on wireless networking technologies while moonlighting with Microsoft Windows, mobile devices and management, and unified communications. He produces product reviews, technology analysis and opinion pieces for eWEEK.com, eWEEK magazine, and the Labs' Release Notes blog. Follow Andrew on Twitter at andrewrgarcia, or reach him by email at agarcia@eweek.com.
By Andrew Garcia  |  Posted 2007-02-08 Email Print this article Print

In the RSA 2007 conference titled Securing End Points with Network Solutions, Tipping Point's Senior Product Manager Robert Albach Sr. posed a real doozy of a question: "Would you rather have your company a) infected by a widespread, debilitating worm or b) lose critical data going out of the network?" Pretty much all the audience members that voted chose the worm. Albach pointed out that a worm could be more personally humiliating or cause more long hours, since it would be highly visible to coworkers and bosses. But a data loss had much more potential for regulatory and compliance problems that could cause the company bad press, lawsuits or fines. But where do corporations spend more money and time? Deploying and maintaining anti-virus, anti-spyware, IDS/IPS and behavioral defenses to combat the worm? Or deploying information leak prevention technologies -- either at the network (like Vontu) or at the endpoint (USB controls, mobile encryption or other info leak protections like Workshare Protect)? An interesting quandary, especially since it was posed by a man working for a company that defends against the former. Where do you stand? Which would you choose?

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