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Thinking Security: Stopping Next Year’s Hackers by Steven M. Bellovin

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Chapter 2. Thinking About Security

“Think, youth, think! For know, Lensman, that upon the clarity of your thought and upon the trueness of your perception depends the whole future of your Patrol and of your Civilization; more so now by far than at any time in the past.”

Mentor of Arisia in Second Stage Lensman—E. E. “DOC” SMITH

2.1 The Security Mindset

I’ve often remarked that the best thing about my job is that I get to think evil thoughts and still feel virtuous about it. Remarkably, it isn’t easy. In fact, for most people it’s remarkably hard to think like a bad guy. Nevertheless, the ability to do so is at the heart of what security people have to do.

Bruce Schneier explained it very well in an essay a few years back [Schneier 2008]:

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