Oracle Patches Get Bad Rap
On the surface, a recently published survey by the Independent Oracle Users Group (IOUG) bears some seemingly frightening numbers. According to the study, which was conducted during the middle of 2008, 26 percent of 150 respondents admitted that their respective companies require the quarterly Oracle patches to be applied upon release. Nineteen percent said their companies don't have any policies at all
Proving The ROI
With budgets and IT staff stretched to thinner levels than ever, change is going to come slowly this year and proving the ROI of each project is going to be critical not only to enable the approval of the next project, but possibly to keep your job.
PCI Compliance Questions? You're Hardly Alone.
The more companies breached, the likelier we are to hear more clamor for for tighter, stricter, tougher compliance standards for companies handling customer credit card information. But some feel it will take a lot more breaches before standards get a lot tighter.
Better Storage Practices To Improve Backup
Backup is the thorn in the side of many otherwise smoothly running IT operations. There is probably little coincidence that the newest hire is almost always assigned the backup process or the ramification for missing the assignments meeting. The truth is that backup should be simple -- all you're doing is copying data to tape. The problem in general has nothing to do with the backup process, it has more to do with how primary storage is managed and optimized.
IR/Forensic Favorites Get Streamlined
A couple of my favorite incident response and forensic tools were recently updated with some great new features to help streamline their use. The first two tools are from Mandiant and work hand-in-hand, Memoryze and Audit Viewer. If you've not used Memoryze yet, it deserves your attention. I've found it to be extremely useful in incident response situations dealing with malware.
Consumer Password Status Quo
So what's it going to take for consumers to take security seriously? Apparently a lot more than the nearly 10 million cases of identity fraud and massive breaches at their favorite discount retail chains. If they haven't already had their credit card accounts compromised, most everyone knows of someone who has. But apparently that's not incentive enough for them to
Breach! More Payment Processor Problems
The news of another -- another! -- payment processor data breach makes it clear that the crooks have selected processing companies as the battleground of choice in their efforts to grab your customers' credit card information.
Tool Validation: Trust, But Verify
I received a lot of great feedback after my Friday post about WinFE, the bootable Windows Forensic Environment. The biggest question was whether it really is treating the drive as read-only. In my closing, I said I'd do more testing than just building the CD and making sure it booted up in my virtual machine environment. As security professionals and forensic investigators, don't you all validate your tools befor
TCG Drive Encryption Goes Mainstream
The Trusted Computing Group's newly released specifications for the management of hard drive encryption are now being adopted by a number of vendors -- Seagate arguably the most prominent, but also including Fujitsu, Toshiba, Hitachi, Wave Systems, CryptoMill, WinMagic, Secude, and McAfee.
WinFE: Windows Bootable Forensic CD
I've been using the Helix incident response and forensics LiveCD since it was first created. It has been an invaluable tool, but sometimes it falls short on hardware support for various SATA/SAS and RAID controllers. In those situations, creating a forensic image came down to a "best effort" exercise during which I did my best to prevent modification to the original evidence while still getting an image I could analyze later. WinFE is here to help.
'Sexy View' Malware Targets Symbian
The worm targets Symbian OS S60 3rd Edition handsets, and it can send a user's contacts, phone number, and other sensitive information to a remote server.
CAPTCHA Cnondrum: Automated Attacks Trump Human-Entry Defenses
Automated attacks aimed at bypassing CAPTCHA -- those squiggly characters you have to enter to access some blogs and e-mail -- are getting better and faster at overcoming anti-spam defenses. In other words, the machines are beating us at what was supposed to be our game.
Conficker's Three-Way Knockout
Malware analysis is a highlight of what I do, but it's not something I get to do on a weekly basis. The cases I deal with are a bit sporadic and clustered, showing an obvious ebb and flow based on current trends. This is one of those heavy times, thanks to Conficker and its friends.
Data Compliance: Massachusetts Law Has National Implications (If It Ever Gets Finished)
Massachusetts' decision to revise its exceptionally tough new data privacy law (which will exert effects far beyond the Commonwealth's borders) has a lot of businesses (not to mention their lawyers and compliance advisers) wondering just what to do and when. How do you know what to comply with, and what to finesse? How far do you go in complying with a law that may be changed in the next few months?
Smartphone Threats Intensify
Enterprise data at risk, according to new McAfee report, which shows mobile device manufacturers seeing more malware attacks than ever before