[thelist] RE: [OT] blaster worm punishment

Ken Schaefer Ken at adOpenStatic.com
Sun Jan 30 03:03:23 CST 2005

: From: thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org [mailto:thelist-
: bounces at lists.evolt.org] On Behalf Of Mac Jordan
: Subject: Re: [thelist] RE: [OT] blaster worm punishment
: On Sat, 29 Jan 2005 23:46:13 -0800 (PST), Steven Streight
: <vaspersthegrate at yahoo.com> wrote:
: > I consider such acts to be home grown 
: > terrorism and similar to murder, downsizing, 
: > or offshore outsourcing of sensitive material 
: > (network security, medical records, government 
: > work, etc.) in purely detrimental effects 
: > for no good cause.
: I think you need to get a sense of proportion. 

I agree - murder is somehow morally, ethically or legally equivalent to

: Nobody need fall prey to these exploits if they use a 
: proper secure OS.

As long as humans write code, and as long as humans are fallible, software
will have mistakes. And mistakes will be exploited. No OS in the world, not
now or in the future, will protect you against that.

And that's assuming that the coder has a full grasp of the implications of
the code they are writing. How many people on this list post code that's
chock full of security holes? And even when intelligent, experienced people
write code: how many security systems and algorithms out there are eventually
shown to be flawed? 

: I blame Microsoft for most of this stuff -
: if they didn't release intrinsically insecure 
: operating systems, nobody would be writing 
: viruses.

People write viruses for any number of reasons. Some people do it for kicks.
Some people do it so they can sell "0wn3d" machines to spammers. Some people
do it so they can use those machines to host pr0n, warez or mp3s (how many
people on this list download stuff illegally - where do you think it comes
from?). Some people do it so they can then attack some other, more secure
system, and by using intermediaries, cover their tracks.

People don't write because the OS is insecure - that just gives them the
"opportunity". The motive (the reason why they do it, and not the vehicle
through which they do it) is something different.


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