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Security Maven Calls for Internet 'Disease Control' Agency

The dominance of Windows in the marketplace continues to represent a threat to the safety and security of the Internet and is a problem that must be addressed at the highest levels of government, a noted security researcher said in his keynote speech at the Black Hat Windows conference here Thursday. Dan Geer, one of the authors of last year's controversial paper on the subject of the Windows monoculture on the Internet, said that the assertions in the paper and his speech are not new and are beginning to draw the attention of legislators and government officials in the United States and abroad.

"This wasn't a shot out of the dark. It's not a new idea, even though in some sense I got fired publicly because I said this," said Geer, who was fired as the chief technology officer of security consultancy @stake Inc. following the paper's publication. "This is a problem that demands attention on the national government scale and maybe the world scale. It is an idea whose time has come." Geer, who is now heading his own risk management firm and is also chief scientist at security vendor Verdasys Inc., said that Windows' dominance is only part of a complex equation that has led to this state of affairs. Also contributing to the problem is the relative lack of skill of most PC users and the number of current vulnerabilities in Windows.

News source: eWeek

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