October 21st, 2004, 06:03 PM
Hackers getting smarter, Microsoft CEO says
This seems to fit in the "uh huh" category... Are we sure that it's the fact that "hackers" got smarter? Maybe someone else got "dumber" along the way?
Source: The Globe and Mail
By MIKE SCHNEIDER
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — Microsoft Corp.'s chief executive believes it's naive to suggest the software giant can eliminate all security vulnerabilities in its various products even though engineers are trying hard to do so.
Hackers get smarter, too, Steve Ballmer told several thousand information-technology workers at the Gartner Symposium ITXPO.
But Mr. Ballmer said engineers were making progress, such as adding security enhancements to Windows Server 2003 when its next big update, Service Pack 1, comes out.
"I think we've learned a lot more about security basically than anyone else in the world," he said. "That's kind of the good news and bad news, being the position we've been in with our kind of market share."
Microsoft's operating systems run on more than 90 per cent of the world's personal computers. Even if Microsoft can make its products completely invulnerable, customers wouldn't upgrade all their systems, Ballmer said.
Mr. Ballmer also explained Microsoft's decision to drop an advanced file storage system from the 2006 release of its next generation of Windows, code-named Longhorn. The new file system, called WinFS, would allow a single search to find anything on a computer.
"It's making good progress but not good enough progress to make an '06 shipment," Mr. Ballmer said. "We thought we needed to get clarity, internally and externally, in terms of what we would be able to ship and when."
Last week, Google released its version of software that scours computers for information. WinFS will be included in later versions of Longhorn.
October 21st, 2004, 06:09 PM
Someone else getting dumber seem's more the pressing statement when it comes to Microsoft, however I have to second the statement that hacker's are getting smarter. Atleast this "generation" of them are, in terms of exploits and the coding/use/knowledge of them. It's also not the hardest thing to find them either.
October 21st, 2004, 08:04 PM
i was talking to a lad i know who works at microsoft and he said he ``tried their new search feature'' and that it is extremely fast! must have been with WinFS.
The new file system, called WinFS, would allow a single search to find anything on a computer.
Hmm...theres something a little peculiar here. Oh i see what it is! the sentence is talking about itself! do you see that? what do you mean? sentences can\'t talk! No, but they REFER to things, and this one refers directly-unambigeously-unmistakably-to the very sentence which it is!
October 21st, 2004, 08:08 PM
My theory is that hackers are not getting smarter they are getting more numerous. Due to the ever expanding useres of pc's and the internet. So you have a bigger pool of knowledge.
What happens if a big asteroid hits the Earth? Judging from realistic simulations involving a sledge hammer and a common laboratory frog, we can assume it will be pretty bad. - Dave Barry
October 21st, 2004, 08:20 PM
The knowledge pool definitely grows, not just with users but the resources that is provided and how easily it's provided to them.
October 21st, 2004, 08:21 PM
You mean to tell me that they didn't see this coming??? WOW someone must be sleeping in their job.
October 21st, 2004, 08:22 PM
Cybr1d: When it comes to Microsoft, I wouldn't doubt it if EVERYONE slept on their job.
October 21st, 2004, 08:40 PM
My view on it is that IT professionals and instructors don't differenciate what you use your new found info on. Wether black, grey or white hat usage. It's he who has the money that can sit in on any class ranging on any subject (which begs the question, who is sitting in on the IT security classes??)
October 21st, 2004, 10:40 PM
The problem really isn't that the "hackers" are getting smarter..... lets face it, buffer overflows and stack smashing has been around a long time now. Breaking program security has been around since programs began being distributed - that's where I started 20+ years ago....
The issue is party "bloat" and partly distribution.
When I started I had 1k, (yes folks, you read that right, one kilobyte), of RAM. My programs were _tight_, memory was a premium thing.... Then came the "standard" 640k... OMG.... I don't need to worry about memory usage, I don't have to limit user input etc. Now look.... Gig's of RAM... programmers just program - resources are irrelevant in the creation of the "masterpiece". Unfortunately, the lack of attention to the resources also leads to the lack of checking for acceptable input length etc.... Thus the issues that, with some of the memory monitoring tools available, make finding the "holes" rather easy.
Secondly, distribution...... When 50 people had computers they were the *geeks*. They always wanted the most up to date sh1t available and they got it..... They _updated_! Then computer's became affordable, (nay, essential), and now there are 50 billion computers out there. Most of the owners only have them so they can say they have one..... having the "latest and greatest" isn't relevant.... They have it, it works.... bingo.... a script kiddie heaven.....
Remember... there were no script kiddies 20 years ago..... You did it yourself or relied upon a friend that lived in the same village to do things for you....
The "hackers" are no smarter than they ever were..... they just have more opportunity.....
Don\'t SYN us.... We\'ll SYN you.....
\"A nation that draws too broad a difference between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools.\" - Thucydides
October 22nd, 2004, 01:48 AM
Opportunity is definitely the keyword here. TS has, once again, hit the proverbial nail on the head. And M$ shows once agasin why they are the "leaders" of the software world. Only the leader of something would be this far behind in terms of common sense.
Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attainable, more people would be content to be ignorant than would take even a little trouble to acquire it.
- Samuel Johnson