ACM interview with Eugene H. Spafford

As a pioneering Internet security researcher and a well-known skeptic about achieving truly secure systems, are you optimistic about efforts to build a more secure network? No, I’m not. I see two problems associated with this approach. First, any significant network that is developed will need to accommodate existing (legacy) systems in some manner, and be operated by some of the same people we have now — there is simply too much invested in legacy systems. This will lead to participating organizations continuing to make poor choices about their priorities for security (and privacy). Many security problems come about because of user error, misconfiguration, poor patching, indirect attacks, and a failure to properly prioritize and fund appropriate safeguards — it isn’t only the design of the networks. A new set of network protocols and connections will not address the full range of issues.

via March 11, 2014: People of ACM: Eugene H. Spafford — Association for Computing Machinery.

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