Microsoft's Charney Talks Up Security

    Date03 Jun 2004
    Posted ByAnthony Pell
    This article is mostly about Microsoft and their security woes. Unexpectedly, however, Linux security tools make a significant cameo. Check out this money-quote:

    Two IT administrators of Windows-centric shops said they're using Snort, a Linux-based intrusion technology, to secure their infrastructures. Sourcefire, a commercial security offering, also makes use of Snort technology in its offerings. "There are better tools in the Linux world for this stuff, not just for intrusion detection but also for antivirus," said Vernon Butler, an IT manager at CWCapital, Needham, Mass. . . . Microsoft's security whistle-stop tour continued in Boston Wednesday with a company executive acknowledging that security is a cost center.

    Discussing how some have tried to position security efforts as potentially beneficial to the bottom line, Microsoft Chief Security Officer Scott Charney admitted he was cynical. "Security is a cost center. If there were no attacks, no one would bother," he told a few hundred IT professionals at the event.

    Charney likened the task of hardening a corporate network's defenses to bolstering airport security. Putting in metal detectors and training personnel is very expensive, "but having said that, you do it because you have to do it," he said.

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