Companies Fight Endless War Against Computer Attacks

Companies Fight Endless War Against Computer Attacks
Companies Fight Endless War Against Computer Attacks 

The New York Times
January 17, 2010 

The recent computer attacks on the mighty Google left every corporate 
network in the world looking a little less safe. 

Google's confrontation with China - over government censorship in 
general and specific attacks on its systems - is an exceptional case, of 
course, extending to human rights and international politics as well as 
high-tech spying. But the intrusion into Google's computers and related 
attacks from within China on some 30 other companies point to the rising 
sophistication of such assaults and the vulnerability of even the best 
defenses, security experts say.

"The Google case shines a bright light on what can be done in terms of 
spying and getting into corporate networks," said Edward M. Stroz, a 
former high-tech crime agent with the F.B.I. who now heads a computer 
security investigation firm in New York.

Computer security is an ever-escalating competition between so-called 
black-hat attackers and white-hat defenders. One of the attackers. main 
tools is malicious software, known as malware, which has steadily 
evolved in recent years. Malware was once mainly viruses and worms, 
digital pests that gummed up and sometimes damaged personal computers 
and networks.

Malware today, however, is likely to be more subtle and selective, 
nesting inside corporate networks. And it can be a tool for industrial 
espionage, transmitting digital copies of trade secrets, customer lists, 
future plans and contracts.


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