Computer Security

Summary

Computer security ensures that data in the computers can not be read or modified by any users who do not has authorization. To achieve this, data encryption and passwords are often involved. Data encryption translates data into a unintelligible form, and deciphering mechanism is needed to acquire the original data. A password refers to a secret word or phrase that let user access to a certain program or system.

Hackers

Computer security developed this fast, this long, because of the action of hackers. Here are some examples:

Kevin David Mitnick

He was born in 1963. He was the most-wanted hacker of United States, but now he runs a security company.

Not only does he master the technique of computer and programming, he is an expert of social engineering:manipulating people to do what you want, like giving out passwords and other infos that give him the access to sensitive information on networks.

In a video, he told a story of pranking on a security guard in a phone company at 2:30am.

He conducted his first big hacking in 1979, when he was 16 by breaking into DEC's computer network and copied their software. And then he was sentenced to 12 months jail for this crime.

Mitnick was arrested by the FBI on February 15, 1995 at his apartment in Raleigh, North Carolina. (BTW, Feb.15 is my birthday.)

Kevin Poulsen

Poulsen managed to stole classified information from the Air Force, and finally get sentenced to 51 months for his crimes.

After giving up hacking, Poulsen became a journalist working for Wired magazine as a senior editor.

Robert Tappan Morris

Morris is the son of an ex security scientist of National Security Association. However, in 1988, while still studying in Cornell University, Morris released possibly the first computer "worm" to the internet. It infected 6,000 Unix-based computers, many of which suffered serious damage.

Robert Tappan Morris is now a tenured professor at MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.

Links

Questions

  1. How to improve the security by improve people's knowledge about social engineering?
  2. Why is Quantum computing impossible to decipher?
  3. What is the Law in Qatar about hacking crime?