August 1, 2001
"Incident Response" Like E.R. for I.T. Attacks
Sebastopol, CA--Seventy percent of businesses reported I.T. security
breaches in 2000, and the rate is on the rise.
Is your organization ready to respond to such an incident head-on? Will
you be able to tell whether an incident is an attack or a glitch in the
system? Do you know how to assess the possible damage from an incident?
A just-released book, Incident Response
by Kenneth R. van Wyk & Richard Forno (O'Reilly, US $34.95), shows you how
to answer questions like these and create a plan for exactly what to do before,
during, and after an incident.
"Incident response is often something that's thrown together as
necessary when there's a crisis," says Forno. "As a result, the
response is often chaotic and not useful if the victim company wants to
seek legal recourse against the alleged source of the attack. Incident
response needs to be integrated with the total security and operations
process for the organization--it can't be thrown together or operate in
"Incident response needs to become as much a part of our professional
lives as ambulances or fire departments are in our personal lives,"
adds van Wyk. "Incidents need to be handled in a business-like and
efficient way, as you would expect from a fire department or
The authors of Incident Response
draw on years of experience developing and taking part in incident response
teams at the highest levels of government and business. They guide you through
both the technical and administrative details of effective incident response
planning as they describe:
- What incident response is, and the problems of distinguishing real
risk from perceived risk
- The different types of incident response teams, and advantages and
disadvantages of each
- Planning and establishing an incident response team
- State of the Hack information about different types of attacks
- Recommendations and details about available tools for incident
- Resources available to incident response teams
"There has been an ever-increasing number of incidents that have had
high levels of impact," explains van Wyk. "In my view, many companies
are missing the principal point of incident response--that the business
is the patient in an emergency room. The incident response team needs
to ensure that the patient survives. All solutions, whether they are
technical, or whatever, need to flow from that basic premise. Far too
many companies miss that point entirely."
Response shows how to put in place an incident-response
process that is as planned, efficient, and businesslike as any other I.T.
operation in a mature organization. Incidents happen, and being able to
respond to them effectively makes good business sense.
By Kenneth R. van Wyk & Richard Forno
0-596-00130-4, 234 pages, $34.95
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