Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 41

and awareness (71.3 percent),
information infrastructure
(52.8 percent), personnel
department background checks
(52 percent), purchasing and
acquisitions (38.5 percent), and
IT department baseline documents (37.1 percent). See the
results in Figure 5, page 40.
Significantly, 82.2 of respondents have an information
security policy or policies, 83.5
percent also have a monitoring
and audit policy in place, and
73.8 percent regularly perform
audits. Whether this referred
to internal or external auditing
wasn't addressed in the survey,
but Sardino recommends regular
internal and external audits.
As he explains, "If you're the
one who created the policies,
you think they're wonderful.
Having a neutral outsider look
at security policy and controls
can help organizations be more
vigilant in fighting threats. You
have to expect the policies to
change, much as the threat
landscape changes, which is
fairly regularly. When you do
make changes or updates, make
sure they're implemented as soon
as possible."

The Good and the Bad
Yes, the bad guys are out
there, waiting for even the
slightest security lapse to
pounce. Organizations can take
steps, however, to lessen those
risks-employing encryption,
promoting education for both
system administrators and end
users, and regularly auditing and
updating policies.
The one thing they can't do is
become complacent. Threats are
becoming evermore common and
sophisticated, so no matter how
good their current security plan
is, it's likely to become outdated
in short order.
"You have your standard
threats-phishing, spyware,

malware-but thanks to
automation, threats beyond
those are becoming more
dangerous. Unfortunately, many
developers aren't taking the
many ways someone can corrupt
their applications into account.
It's never going to stop. We need

to more fully educate people and
deploy the best tools we can,"
King says.
Jim Utsler is a senior writer for
IBM Systems Magazine and has been
covering technology for more than
20 years.

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