Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Risk

3/3/2010
06:26 PM
George V. Hulme
George V. Hulme
Commentary
50%
50%

RSA: Experts Urge Cybersecurity Collaboration, Quality Assurance

An important theme within the conversation at RSA Conference 2010 has been finding ways for the government and private industry to better collaborate when it comes to fighting cyberthreats.

An important theme within the conversation at RSA Conference 2010 has been finding ways for the government and private industry to better collaborate when it comes to fighting cyberthreats.Part of the collaborative effort between government and the private sector must include increased transparency through data sharing. With more shared data about attack trends, mitigation techniques, and security strategies that worked (as well as those that did not) everyone should be able to more effectively protect their systems. "We must all partner together to make sure cybersecurity is secure," said White House Cybersecurity Coordinator, Howard Schmidt yesterday in his keynote address at the RSA Conference.

For the government's part in increasing transparency, Schmidt announced the availability of unclassified portions of the Obama administration's Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative (CNCI). InformationWeek's Thomas Claburn covered the event in this story that ran yesterday.

The unclassified CNCI document, available here, goes into some depth explaining the nation's effort to harden public and private networks.

During his presentation Schmidt also noted several times how "collective knowledge" is the most powerful tool we have available to us to combat cyberattacks. And another security expert I had the pleasure to speak with at the conference, retired Secret Service agent Robert Rodriguez, would certainly agree with Schmidt's sentiment. As chairman and founder of the Security Innovation Network (SINET), Rodriguez is currently working to help government agencies, system integrators and private industry to bridge the gap between Silicon Valley and Washington D.C.

An important part of filing that gap is making it easier for security vendors be able to reach the government market. "We need to capture the entrepreneurial spirit and innovation occurring in Silicon Valley and the IT security community and help the U.S. government become early adopters of the best-in-class technologies," Rodriguez said.

Helping the government find and eventually embrace that technology, as well as educating the IT security community on the varying needs of the U.S. government is one of the primary goals of SINET's IT Security Entrepreneur's Forum to be held at Stanford University March 16 and 17.

While leveraging the best security technologies is going to be a part of the solution to the current IT security crises we face - it isn't going to solve the problem by itself.

During the RSA Cryptographers' Panel, former National Security Agency technical director of information assurance Brian Snow urged IT vendors to build more secure and sustainable systems. "The cure is to ask vendors to start building more quality into their implementations," Snow said. "Building quality systems can be a commercial advantage. Don't just sit there until you see an attack underway to fix a problem."

It's a message Snow has advocated for some time. This [.pdf] is from a paper Snow published a number of years ago:

When will we be secure? Nobody knows for sure but it cannot happen before commercial security products and services possess not only enough functionality to satisfy customers' stated needs, but also sufficient assurance of quality, reliability, safety, and appropriateness for use. Such assurances are lacking in most of today's commercial security products and services.

Unfortunately, it's true of most of today's IT applications - not just security products. And it's way past time for this sorry condition to improve. And it's one that requires collaboration to fix, too. Because an effort nothing short of government agencies and large commercial IT buyers forcing vendors to build security assurance into their products - before acquiring them- will affect the change we need.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Commentary
How SolarWinds Busted Up Our Assumptions About Code Signing
Dr. Jethro Beekman, Technical Director,  3/3/2021
News
'ObliqueRAT' Now Hides Behind Images on Compromised Websites
Jai Vijayan, Contributing Writer,  3/2/2021
News
Attackers Turn Struggling Software Projects Into Trojan Horses
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  2/26/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win an Amazon Gift Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: George has not accepted that the technology age has come to an end.
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
How Enterprises are Developing Secure Applications
Recent breaches of third-party apps are driving many organizations to think harder about the security of their off-the-shelf software as they continue to move left in secure software development practices.
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2009-20001
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in MantisBT before 2.24.5. It associates a unique cookie string with each user. This string is not reset upon logout (i.e., the user session is still considered valid and active), allowing an attacker who somehow gained access to a user's cookie to login as them.
CVE-2020-28466
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
This affects all versions of package github.com/nats-io/nats-server/server. Untrusted accounts are able to crash the server using configs that represent a service export/import cycles. Disclaimer from the maintainers: Running a NATS service which is exposed to untrusted users presents a heightened r...
CVE-2021-27364
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. drivers/scsi/scsi_transport_iscsi.c is adversely affected by the ability of an unprivileged user to craft Netlink messages.
CVE-2021-27365
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. Certain iSCSI data structures do not have appropriate length constraints or checks, and can exceed the PAGE_SIZE value. An unprivileged user can send a Netlink message that is associated with iSCSI, and has a length up to the maximum length...
CVE-2021-27363
PUBLISHED: 2021-03-07
An issue was discovered in the Linux kernel through 5.11.3. A kernel pointer leak can be used to determine the address of the iscsi_transport structure. When an iSCSI transport is registered with the iSCSI subsystem, the transport's handle is available to unprivileged users via the sysfs file system...