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Preventive Security Through Behavior Modification – Part 2

So how severe are punishments for IT crimes?

– a $100 billion solution

Gorka Sadowski, CISSP, Principal Solution Architect, LogLogic

In Part 1 we saw that Defensive Security is not enough to solve the $1 trillion Intellectual Property and IT theft and cybercrime problem.

This week, more about Preventive Security.

Preventive Security is a set of technologies and processes used to prevent security incidents from even being attempted. These include awareness and training programs, establishment of proper policies and procedures and the use of technology solutions in support of existing laws.

In fact, this is not very different from “regular” crime and how we deal with it. We arm ourselves with the means to catch the bad guys, we severely punish crimes and we let people know that crime is bad, that jail is also bad and that if they try and commit the crime they will be caught. This prevents most people from getting into trouble.

So how severe are punishments for IT crimes?

In a case tried in March of last year, “The Soup Nazi” hacker was indicted to 20 years in jail for being caught stealing credit cards numbers.  Other types of crime, such as employee embezzlement, intellectual property theft, insider trade, and other white collar crimes are also severely punished with jail time and severe fines.

Do these types of punishment act as a deterrent to electronic crime? Yes, they most certainly do, provided the bad guys know that they’ll be caught. Would-be attackers, like everybody else in the security business, play the odd games. I guess you could say that they too follow a risk management process!

“OK, I’m going to try this…I could get 20 years, but I’ll never get caught” will certainly trigger a different behavior than “Hmm, I’m not even going to try it…I will get 20 years for sure because I’ll get caught”.

So, as in “the real world,” severe punishment is not enough. We also need to deter would-be cybercriminals with a real fear of getting caught.

And what’s the surest way to catch bad guys?

The best way to catch bad behavior is to properly perform forensics. Simply put, computer forensics is the digital equivalent of traditional criminal forensics. If a crime has been committed then we need to find out who did it and how they did it. And the investigation needs to respect the digital integrity of evidence so that the case can be successfully prosecuted in a court of law.

Ask any computer forensics expert what their favorite, go-to data points are to solve a complex IT crime, and they’ll tell you “properly managed logs.”

Next time we’ll see the advantages of using logs to solve the IT crime and why properly managed logs can be a powerful deterrent to would-be thieves.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bill Roth

Bill Roth is a Silicon Valley veteran with over 20 years in the industry. He has played numerous product marketing, product management and engineering roles at companies like BEA, Sun, Morgan Stanley, and EBay Enterprise. He was recently named one of the World's 30 Most Influential Cloud Bloggers.