Fri, Jul 20th 2007 3:22am
McAfee CEO Dave DeWalt has been pushing politicians to create new laws to deal with cybercrime. He says cybercrime is now a bigger business than illegal drug trafficking in the US, and that the punishment doled out to cybercriminals isn't an effective deterrent. He may have a valid point there, but new laws and sentencing guidelines don't seem to be the most effective potential tool against computer crimes -- particularly when much of this crime comes from overseas, where being caught and punished by a remote government isn't likely to stop many criminals. DeWalt says that the technical side of security is "pretty advanced", and that government is lagging. But if things really were so rosy in the computer security business, it doesn't seem like there would be much of a need for new laws. He mentions malware and phishing, two areas where he says new laws could help -- but both of these represent areas where security vendors could show some improvements too. Traditional methods, like blacklists, seem to be flagging, so some fresh thinking and innovation in the industry, not just a bunch of new laws, would be beneficial. There are some areas, though, where some stronger deterrents might be useful, such as in getting businesses and government to take the security of personal information more seriously.
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