7Profile: Michael Howard

Michael Howard is infectious. He’s a great educator, an energetic speaker, and after nearly 20 years is as passionate about his computer security specialty, secure code, as he was in the beginning. It’s hard to be around him more than a few minutes without you wanting to help make the world more secure one line of code at a time. He first gained worldwide notice for co‐authoring Writing Secure Code (https://www.amazon.com/Writing‐Secure‐Code‐Michael‐Howard/dp/0735615888) along with David LeBlanc and for being a significant part of the reason why Microsoft is hugely dedicated to writing more secure code. Howard, originally from New Zealand but now living in Austin, TX, has co‐written several books on writing more secure code and is a frequent blogger.

I asked Howard how he got into computer security. He replied, “I was working on very early versions of Windows NT for Microsoft. I was doing fairly low‐level stuff like access control, cryptography, and custom GINAs (graphical interfaces which used to be the way you logged into and authenticated by Microsoft Windows and other authentication providers). This really led me to start thinking about security‐as‐a‐feature ...

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