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«Securing Information in the Digital Age Information Security Policies This document presents a suite of integrated solutions which, together, offer ...»

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Growing numbers of users are less than entirely happy with the idea of a remote machine placing spurious files on their system, which may contain personal information including user IDs and passwords - especially when a credit card has been used for purchasing goods or services on-line. There is no obvious benefit to the user - the speed gains are marginal at best, and some users are now setting their browsers to reject Cookies, or deleting any received during the day, at close of business. For more information, visit www.cookiecentral.com/ Copy Protection Techniques used by software developers to (try to) prevent illegal use of their products. The unlicensed use of software (i.e. software piracy) is a major problem.

It is not difficult for an organisation to purchase, say, one licensed copy of a program and then install it on, say, 6 separate machines. Or install the program on a server and allow numerous users access through a network. This is illegal, rendering the organisation liable to prosecution - even if the installation was carried out without management’s knowledge.

Copy Protection comes in a number of forms :Moral; a legal copy comes with an End User Licence Agreement (EULA) which states the terms upon which the software may be used. The EULA usually includes a selection of dire threats concerning the possible actions which the software developers may take if unauthorised use of the software comes to their attention.

Physical, typically a Dongle or a Key Disk, one of which is supplied with the original program and must be physically present on/in a computer before the program will run. Quite effective but unpopular with users since, typically, a parallel or serial port or floppy drive will be used by the device, and hence is unavailable for other use.

Required Input; method used most commonly in games software, whereby the program will not run until it has been give a specific piece of information which is (or should be ) available only to the registered user. Typically this will be a particular word from a specific place in the official user manual, or a number from a code sheet. One copy of the manual or code sheet will have been supplied with the software and the required input will change each time the program is started.

This approach is quite effective, but since the manual may often easily be scanned also, it is not full proof.

Logical; a variety of methods used singly or in combination, including nonstandard formats of disks (to dissuade copying), machine-specific registration, installation counters, etc designed to minimise the risk of the program being installed on more than one machine.

Glossary 409 Copyright The UK Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988 states that “the owner of the copyright has the exclusive right to copy the work”. The function of copyright is to protect the skill and labour expended by the author, of a piece of work. As such, copyrighted material may not be printed, copied or distributed without permission from the owner of the copyright. In general, you cannot copyright facts but the consequential analysis, presentation and approach can certainly be copyrighted.

Especially when information is downloaded from the Internet, it is dangerous to assume that it is in the ‘public domain’ unless it is explicit on the point.

As soon as the author creates a ‘work’ (of whatever nature) which is original, a copyright automatically come into existence. The author is not obliged to register the work, although registration makes the copyright more visible.

To avoid any misunderstanding, all documents, reports, surveys etc should have the copyright owner affixed.

Corrupt Data Data that has been received, stored, or changed, so that it cannot be read or used by the program which originally created the data. Most common causes of corrupt data are disk failures (usually where the magnetic coating of the disk is breaking down, and the computer cannot read the disk properly) and power failures, where the computer loses power and shuts down unexpectedly with random writes to the hard drive, and loss of memory contents.

Cracker A cracker is either a piece of software (program) whose purpose is to ‘crack’ the code to, say, a password; or ‘cracker’ refers to a person who attempts to gain unauthorised access to a computer system. Such persons are usually ill intentioned and perform malicious acts of techno-crime and vandalism.

• Code breaking software. A piece of software designed to decipher a code, but used most often to ‘crack a password. Crackers operate quite simply by testing large numbers of possible passwords much faster than a human being could hope to perform. Passwords can be extraordinarily complex, but, given sufficient time, and sufficient computer power, ANY password can be broken - even one of 64 casesensitive characters. Companies are well advised to ensure that, to prevent system penetration by a Cracker, there is a limit on the number of password tries permitted before the system locks and notifies the Security Officer and/or Network Administrator. Three attempts is fairly standard; other systems may be less strict, while some high security installations will permit only one attempt before locking and generating security alert messages.

• Illegal entry into a computer system. These individuals often have malicious intent and can have multiple tools for breaking into a system. The term was adopted circa 1985 by hackers in defence against journalistic misuse of hacker. Contrary to widespread myth, cracking does not usually involve some mysterious leap of intuition or brilliance, but rather the persistent repetition of a handful of fairly wellknown tricks that exploit common weaknesses in the security of target systems. Accordingly, most crackers are only mediocre hackers.





Crackers tend to gather in small, tight-knit, very secretive groups that have little overlap with the huge, open hacker poly-culture; though crackers often like to describe themselves as hackers, most true hackers consider crackers a separate and lower form of life, little better than virus writers.

Glossary 410 Crash System Failure, often accompanied by loss of data. The term stems largely from the days of the first Hard Disks which were prone to physical damage. The gaps between the surface of the disk and the drive heads which read and write the data are so small (considerably less than the thickness of a human hair) that, if disturbed while in use, the heads would, literally, crash into the surface of the disk thereby ruining the surface and destroying program files and/or data. The heads had to be ‘parked’ in a safe position before the disk pack or computer was moved.

Manufacturing standards have improved dramatically since then, and true crashes are now quite rare, but the term remains as a general description of a system suddenly stopping for no immediately obvious reason.

Crawler Also known as a Web Crawler, but sometimes described as an Agent, or a Bot. In essence a Crawler is a highly specialised search engine, designed to ‘crawl’ around the World Wide Web looking for particular pieces of information, addresses, references, etc., while the user is off-line, i.e. not connected to the Internet, and therefore not running up connection charges. The Crawler will search the Internet 24 hours a day, until the next time its user logs on, when the results/information obtained so far will be transmitted to the user, and the Crawler will continue.

Although not necessarily benign, Crawlers are not usually malevolent - merely seeking information rather than actively damaging systems - although the information concerned may be sensitive, classified, or confidential.

Crippled More commonly associated with software rather than hardware. The term indicates that the application is not capable of performing all functions normally expected of such a program, for example saving or printing files created by the user. Usually used in connection with shareware, or promotional software where some functions are deliberately crippled as an incentive for a user to pay for the fully-functional version.

Crippleware Shareware, or promotional software, which has been crippled, i.e. some functions, such as printing or saving files, have been disabled by the developer. Whilst logical from the developer’s perspective, its popularity has fallen, as it fails to allow the user to use the system properly and hence can avert sales, rather than promote them. Far better is the technique whereby the software is fully functional for, say, 30 days, and then refuses access until a licence string is entered. Even the removal of the software and a re-install will not result in a further 30 days.

Why? - because the developers are smarter than that! Upon installation, a tiny hidden file is created in a secret location. This file and its contents are read upon start up, and thus the user is forced to make a purchase decision.

CRT CRT stands for Cathode Ray Tube, and is the traditional means of displaying pictures on a monitor or television. Indeed, the old green monitors used with the first PCs were called CRTs. Today, workstation monitors still used an electron

–  –  –

Cryptography The subject of cryptography is primarily concerned with maintaining the privacy of communications, and modern methods use a number of techniques to achieve this. Encryption is the transformation of data into another usually unrecognisable form. The only means to read the data is to de-crypt the data using a (secret) key, in the form of a secret character string, itself encapsulated within a pre-formatted (computer) file.

Customise To modify a piece of standard software to suit some specific needs of the organisation. For example an accounting system developed to meet typical UK accounting requirements may need some customisation if bought by a user in a country with different accounting and reporting standards.

However, for such customisation to be possible would require, either access to the source code (unlikely, unless you developed it yourself, or are willing to buy the company), or are able to convince the software developers about the need to customise the software to meet your specific needs.

Cutover Sometimes known as ‘going live’. Cutover is the point at which a new program or system, takes over – perhaps from a previous version, and the old program is no longer used. On major developments, this point is reached when the new software has been written, tested, and run satisfactorily, in parallel with the old, for an agreed period.

Cybercrime Cyber crime is any criminal activity which uses network access to commit a criminal act. With the exponential growth of Internet connection, the opportunities for the exploitation of any weaknesses in Information Security are multiplying.

Cyber crime may be internal or external, with the former easier to perpetrate.

The term has evolved over the past few years since the adoption of Internet connection on a global scale with hundreds of millions of users. Cybercrime refers to the act of performing a criminal act using cyberspace (the Internet network), as the communications vehicle. Some would argue that a Cybercrime is not a crime as it is a crime against software and not against a person’s person or property.

However, whilst the legal systems around the world scramble to introduce laws to combat Cybercriminals, two types of attack are prevalent : Techno-crime. A pre-meditated act against a system or systems, with the express intent to copy, steal, prevent access, corrupt or otherwise deface or damage parts or all of a computer system. The 24x7 connection to the Internet makes this type of Cybercrime a real possibility to engineer from anywhere in the world; leaving few if any, ‘finger prints’.

• Techno-vandalism. These acts of ‘brainless’ defacement of Websites, and/or other activities such as copying files and publicising their contents publicly, are usually opportunistic in nature. Tight internal security, allied to strong technical safeguards should prevent the vast majority of such incidents.

Glossary 412 Cybersitter Also Net Nanny, a Cybersitter is a piece of software, originally designed for parents concerned about their children’s unrestricted access to the seamier side of the Internet, which can be used to block a users access to websites containing ‘dangerous’ or ‘offensive’ material.

Cybersitters are being used more widely, as companies realise that such material obtained by their staff and stored on a organisation computer could jeopardise system security as well as rendering the organisation liable to breaches of legislation, e.g. on defamation, data protection, the Official Secrets Act, morality, etc.

Conversely, to avoid the problems of civil/human rights breaches, constructive dismissal, labour tribunals, etc, companies need to exercise caution when dealing with staff found to be making ‘inappropriate’ use of Internet and E-mail facilities.

The dice are loaded.

CyberwarAlternative name for Infowar.

Cybrarian Contraction of Cyber-Librarian;

1 an individual responsible for care and control over, and extraction of data from, the organisation’s computer archives and electronic reference libraries.

2 an individual skilled (and possibly making a legitimate living) at obtaining information electronically from on-line sources in various parts of the Internet.

Data / Information In the area of Information Security, data (and the individual elements that comprise the data) is processed, formatted and re-presented, so that it gains meaning and thereby becomes information. Information Security is concerned with the protection and safeguard of that information which, in its various forms can be identified as Business Assets or Information Assets.

The terms data and information can be used somewhat interchangeably; but, as a general rule, information always comprises data, but data is not always information.

Data Capture The process of entering data into a computer system. This can be a manual process where data is entered through a keyboard, or by scanner, or other equipment, or may be automatic where a system is receiving a transmission from another program or computer.



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