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Copyright: Dr. Nikolai Bezroukov 1994-2013. Unpublished notes. Version 0.80.October, 2013
Contents : Foreword : Ch01 : Ch02 : Ch03 : Ch04 : Ch05 : Ch06 : Ch07 : Ch08 : Ch09 : Ch10 : Ch11 : Ch12 : Ch13
Chapter 7: Network worms
The excessive centralization trend in IT that was dominant in recent years shoudle be viewed under the angle of network worms attack. Recent concentration of key elements of IT infrastrcture in one (major) datacenter makes such a datacenter perfect target for work attack.
For example centralization of Lotus Notes as a corporate mail platform makes infrastructure more vulnerable to any problem that creates a network congestion like network worms (or other disruption of links between major hubs).
The utopia of creating a "universal PC image" should probably be abolished. The problem with a standard corporate image is that it replicates flows very effectivly and taking into account private parching mechanism that many deploy it is a step to a problem. In all cases that I know patching quality was inferiour to simple application of Microsoft automatic patch policy.
For example secondary infection with Bozori by corporations who previously had suffered from Zotob, demonstrated that despite high visibility and additional management efforts for the initial worm, there were enough unpatched PCs for this new strain to infect initial set of PC to create a critical mass that was enough to propagate it to all major sites: Bozori was not limited to one site.
In a sense the patching that was performed for Zotob was the best possible with the current technology and the results suggest that the technology used was completely outdated and inadequate.
If the first wave of the worm were destructive (like Chernobyl virus of few years ago was), the results for any large corporation would be pretty grim. It's pure luck that all network worms that we encountered were essentially a training exercise for IT staff (or proof of the concept, if you wish), not a real threat.
None of them was explicitly designed to cause damage. So the main negative effects the past were mainly due to panic and overreaction. which are amplified via centralization as one panicked idiot at central site can do more damage than any number of works in 10 years.
But in the future things might change. They are already changing in Middle East. Unfortunately a possibility that in the future a worm can be released by a terrorist group with the explicit aim to damage as many corporate PCs as possible can not be completely discounted.
Unless patching technology is dramatically improved and some more or less modern technology implemented, large corporation that entertain illusion that they pricy package for applying patches works are highly vulnerable to any new network worm that uses any future remotely exploitable Microsoft patch within a couple of weeks from its release. People on all levels of IT management should clearly understand this fact.
One simple solution would be a switch to using Microsoft update site for up to 80% of PCs (users can enter this list voluntarily; some already did :-) or implementing an internal automatic update site. I think that in any large corporation that are less then 20% of PCs that are really "special" in a sense that they can be negatively affected by "blind" Microsoft updates.
Groupthink : Two Party System as Polyarchy : Corruption of Regulators : Bureaucracies : Understanding Micromanagers and Control Freaks : Toxic Managers : Harvard Mafia : Diplomatic Communication : Surviving a Bad Performance Review : Insufficient Retirement Funds as Immanent Problem of Neoliberal Regime : PseudoScience : Who Rules America : Neoliberalism : The Iron Law of Oligarchy : Libertarian Philosophy
War and Peace : Skeptical Finance : John Kenneth Galbraith :Talleyrand : Oscar Wilde : Otto Von Bismarck : Keynes : George Carlin : Skeptics : Propaganda : SE quotes : Language Design and Programming Quotes : Random IT-related quotes : Somerset Maugham : Marcus Aurelius : Kurt Vonnegut : Eric Hoffer : Winston Churchill : Napoleon Bonaparte : Ambrose Bierce : Bernard Shaw : Mark Twain Quotes
Vol 25, No.12 (December, 2013) Rational Fools vs. Efficient Crooks The efficient markets hypothesis : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2013 : Unemployment Bulletin, 2010 : Vol 23, No.10 (October, 2011) An observation about corporate security departments : Slightly Skeptical Euromaydan Chronicles, June 2014 : Greenspan legacy bulletin, 2008 : Vol 25, No.10 (October, 2013) Cryptolocker Trojan (Win32/Crilock.A) : Vol 25, No.08 (August, 2013) Cloud providers as intelligence collection hubs : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : Inequality Bulletin, 2009 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Copyleft Problems Bulletin, 2004 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Energy Bulletin, 2010 : Malware Protection Bulletin, 2010 : Vol 26, No.1 (January, 2013) Object-Oriented Cult : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2011 : Vol 23, No.11 (November, 2011) Softpanorama classification of sysadmin horror stories : Vol 25, No.05 (May, 2013) Corporate bullshit as a communication method : Vol 25, No.06 (June, 2013) A Note on the Relationship of Brooks Law and Conway Law
Fifty glorious years (1950-2000): the triumph of the US computer engineering : Donald Knuth : TAoCP and its Influence of Computer Science : Richard Stallman : Linus Torvalds : Larry Wall : John K. Ousterhout : CTSS : Multix OS Unix History : Unix shell history : VI editor : History of pipes concept : Solaris : MS DOS : Programming Languages History : PL/1 : Simula 67 : C : History of GCC development : Scripting Languages : Perl history : OS History : Mail : DNS : SSH : CPU Instruction Sets : SPARC systems 1987-2006 : Norton Commander : Norton Utilities : Norton Ghost : Frontpage history : Malware Defense History : GNU Screen : OSS early history
The Peter Principle : Parkinson Law : 1984 : The Mythical Man-Month : How to Solve It by George Polya : The Art of Computer Programming : The Elements of Programming Style : The Unix Haterís Handbook : The Jargon file : The True Believer : Programming Pearls : The Good Soldier Svejk : The Power Elite
Most popular humor pages:
Manifest of the Softpanorama IT Slacker Society : Ten Commandments of the IT Slackers Society : Computer Humor Collection : BSD Logo Story : The Cuckoo's Egg : IT Slang : C++ Humor : ARE YOU A BBS ADDICT? : The Perl Purity Test : Object oriented programmers of all nations : Financial Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : The Most Comprehensive Collection of Editor-related Humor : Programming Language Humor : Goldman Sachs related humor : Greenspan humor : C Humor : Scripting Humor : Real Programmers Humor : Web Humor : GPL-related Humor : OFM Humor : Politically Incorrect Humor : IDS Humor : "Linux Sucks" Humor : Russian Musical Humor : Best Russian Programmer Humor : Microsoft plans to buy Catholic Church : Richard Stallman Related Humor : Admin Humor : Perl-related Humor : Linus Torvalds Related humor : PseudoScience Related Humor : Networking Humor : Shell Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2012 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2013 : Java Humor : Software Engineering Humor : Sun Solaris Related Humor : Education Humor : IBM Humor : Assembler-related Humor : VIM Humor : Computer Viruses Humor : Bright tomorrow is rescheduled to a day after tomorrow : Classic Computer Humor
The Last but not Least
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