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DR Debunks Security Myths

NEW YORK -- Data loss epidemics. Linux and the Mac OS as Windows insurance policies. Anti-virus software is 100 percent effective. In an industry rife with paranoia, new kinds of threats, and overheated vendor marketing, small wonder that enterprise security is beset by myth and misunderstanding, according to a story posted today on CMP Media's Dark Reading (Dark Reading) Website.

The "security epidemic" myth is one of ten prevailing myths identified in Dark Reading's story, "Top Ten Myths of IT Security," which debunks some of the conventional wisdom surrounding risks and practices in the IT security space.

To read the full story, please visit: Dark Reading.

"One of the problems with the enterprise security space is that it is inundated with fear and hype, yet some of the most critical threats are hardly reported," says Terry Sweeney, editor-in-chief of Dark Reading. "Our goal with this story was to identify the most overhyped and underreported aspects of IT security and present them in a clearer light."

The so-called "security epidemic" is one example. Corporations have become much more public about recent security violations, largely because of new laws that require them to notify users of potential data losses. But despite the increase in public disclosure, the actual incidence of security violations has not increased. In fact, a recent study by the Computer Security Institute and the FBI indicates that the number of companies reporting unauthorized use of their systems over the last 12 months has actually dropped, from 56 percent last year to 52 percent this year.

The story also debunks popular thinking about other IT security topics. For example, the notion that Linux and MacOS operating systems are inherently more secure than Microsoft's Windows has been disproved recently, as attackers have targeted these less popular computing environments. "Nothing is bulletproof," said one expert. "Nothing. Suck it up."

Dark Reading also offers some hard truths on antivirus tools: They don't stop new viruses. On the 20th anniversary of "Brain," the first reported virus, security administrators are still plagued by viruses, worms, and malware. Recent studies show that viruses are still by far the greatest cause of security-related financial losses – even though 98 percent of respondents have deployed antivirus software.

"Concepts like these are recognized as myths by some savvy security managers, but there is still a lot of misinformation out there," says Sweeney. "By drawing attention to these misconceptions, IT professionals and non-technical executives can clear the air and discuss issues and initiatives that will really make a positive difference to enterprise security."


Alix Raine
SVP Communications
CMP Technology
600 Community Drive
Manhasset, NY 11030
[email protected]

About Dark Reading
Dark Reading is the latest enterprise-focused Web publication to emerge from CMP Technology's business unit, Light Reading Inc. As the Web's only one-stop security shop, Dark Reading simplifies the challenges IT professionals face in keeping informed about the latest viruses, enterprise network security, and data privacy.

About Light Reading Inc.
Founded in 2000, Light Reading Inc. (Light Reading) is the ultimate source for technology and financial analysis of the communications industry, leading the media sector in terms of traffic, content, and reputation. It reaches an extensive audience of executives and technologists within the telecom and enterprise networking communities, as well as the financial/industry analysts and investors who track these sectors. Light Reading was acquired by United Business Media in August 2005, and operates as a unit of CMP Technology.

About CMP Technology
CMP Technology (CMP) is a marketing solutions company serving the technology industry. Through its market-leading portfolio of trusted information brands, CMP has earned the confidence of more technology professionals than any other media company. As a result, CMP is the premier provider of access, insight and actionable programs designed to connect sellers and buyers in ways that yield superior return on investment. CMP Technology is a subsidiary of United Business Media (UBM), a global provider of news distribution and specialist information services with a market capitalization of more than $3 billion.