o fracasso da segurança (até agora)

Um editorial do blog Zero Day escrito por Michal Zalewski que dá razões para o fracasso da segurança... em criar sistemas seguros. Muito interessante:

Security engineering: broken promises
20 de Maio de 2010

On the face of it, the field of information security appears to be a mature, well-defined, and an accomplished branch of computer science. Resident experts eagerly assert the importance of their area of expertise by pointing to large sets of neatly cataloged security flaws, invariably attributed to security-illiterate developers; while their fellow theoreticians note how all these problems would have been prevented by adhering to this year’s hottest security methodology. A commercial industry thrives in the vicinity, offering various non-binding security assurances to everyone, from casual computer users to giant international corporations.

Yet, for several decades, we have in essence completely failed to come up with even the most rudimentary, usable frameworks for understanding and assessing the security of modern software; and spare for several brilliant treatises and limited-scale experiments, we do not even have any real-world success stories to share. The focus is almost exclusively on reactive, secondary security measures: vulnerability management, malware and attack detection, sandboxing, and so forth; and perhaps on selectively pointing out flaws in somebody else’s code. The frustrating, jealously guarded secret is that when it comes to actually enabling others to develop secure systems, we deliver far less value than could be expected.

So, let’s have a look at some of the most alluring approaches to assuring information security - and try to figure out why they fail to make a difference to regular users and businesses alike.