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Apple, Security, And Disturbing Questions

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In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Apple, Security, And Disturbing Questions
2. Today's Top Story: Google
    - Google CFO Warns Of Slow Growth
    - Google Expands Payment Services
3. Breaking News
    - Apple Unveils Intel-Based Mac Mini And iPod Boom Box
    - Oracle Patches E-Business Security Flaws Ahead Of Schedule
    - Research Group Warns Of New Mobile Device Threat
    - Cisco Says It Does Not Help China Block Speech
    - CBS Offers Mobile News 'Alerts'
    - Tech Convergence Makes A Comeback In 2006
    - Yahoo Limits Advertising With Competing Trademarks
    - India Readies High-Tech Manufacturing Policy
    - AOL Sues Over Identity Thefts, Uses New Law
    - Oracle Launches Free Database Version
    - Mobile Phone Sales Up 21% In 2005: Gartner
    - IBM Debuts Floating-Point Unit For PowerPC
4. Grab Bag: Blogging Phones
    - Sony Ericsson Launches Photo-Blogging Phones (PC Pro)
    - Coalition Representing 15 Million Fights AOL Plan (USA Today)
    - At One Billion, Music Sales By Download Come Of Age (Financial Express)
5. In Depth: Apple Security
    - Analyst Dings Security Vendors For Exploiting Apple Flaws
    - Apple May Be Going After OS X Hacker
    - Mac OS X Suffers From 'Critical' Flaw
    - Blog: A Club Apple Wants Out Of
6. Voice Of Authority: Regulations And Regulators
    - Down To Business: Time To Regulate The Regulations?
7. White Papers: CD/DVD Archiving
    - Selecting A CD/DVD Archive Solution
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"A committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled." -- Sir Barnett Cocks (1907 - 1989)


1. Editor's Note: Apple, Security, And Disturbing Questions

Troubling questions are being raised by one of the few meaningful security issues to impact Apple. As InformationWeek's Larry Greenemeier points out in a blog entry, "Some say the security research community is more dangerous than the hackers they warn against" because Mac exploits are being placed directly on the Web soon after the vulnerabilities are discovered. He quotes a security expert as saying that advisories sometimes serve as more of a publicity machine for the issuers than as a service to IT organizations.

Meanwhile, analyst Rob Enderle--one of the IT industry's chief pot stirrers--asserts that the security vendor community is, in effect, feeding itself with all the warnings it issues, Apple merely being the latest example. "By telling people about an exposure, you're telling someone else how to [exploit] it. I think security companies should spend more time catching criminals than telling them how to become one," the ever-provocative Enderle says. His view is, in turn, dismissed by Gartner security expert John Pescatore as so much old news. But if security vendors didn't derive at least some benefit from all the publicity surrounding vulnerabilities, they'd be far less proactive in dishing out the information, advice, and expertise every time a new one comes to light.

So all the disclosure of vulnerabilities that's come about in recent years does raise a legitimate issue of whether the availability of too much information--from researchers, vendors, blogs, and news stories by swarming journalists--only makes matters worse. What's your view? Would corporate (and personal) IT security be better served if researchers and vendors weren't so trigger-happy with the bulletins and reports? Or do we need all that information to keep even a half step ahead of the hackers? Weigh in at my blog entry, or respond to our poll.

Tom Smith
tsmith@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story: Google Expands At A Slower Pace

Google CFO Warns Of Slow Growth
Google said Web search advertising, which is responsible for 99% of Google sales, would depend on "organic" overall market growth or moves into new markets instead of improvements in its ad business, according to a report on CNBC financial television.

Related Story:

Google Expands Payment Services
Account-holders with Google can now use their credit cards to buy items listed in Google Base, and more payment services are coming.


3. Breaking News

Apple Unveils Intel-Based Mac Mini And iPod Boom Box
The Intel-based Mac Mini and speakers for the iPod are part of Apple's digital living room strategy, designed to allow consumers to use Apple products for all their video and audio needs.

Oracle Patches E-Business Security Flaws Ahead Of Schedule
The move marks the first time Oracle has notified customers of a security fix in an upgrade between its quarterly patch updates.

Research Group Warns Of New Mobile Device Threat
The proof-of-concept Crossover virus is named for its ability to cross-infect a Windows Mobile Pocket PC from a desktop computer, and then delete files on the mobile device.

Cisco Says It Does Not Help China Block Speech
A Cisco executive acknowledged that some of the company's products can be used to block political speech online, but that wasn't their original intent.

CBS Offers Mobile News 'Alerts'
A subscription wireless service for cell phones offers text with photos and video clips of both news and entertainment shows.

Tech Convergence Makes A Comeback In 2006
Signs of convergence are on display the world over, from the semiconductor industry in Asia to cutting-edge telecom development from Europe and the thriving U.S. Internet community experimenting with new products and services.

Yahoo Limits Advertising With Competing Trademarks
Yahoo plans to stop allowing advertisers to buy ads against searches on their competitors' trademarks. But Google continues the practice, and lawyers say it's undetermined whether the ads are legal.

India Readies High-Tech Manufacturing Policy
The Indian government will soon announce a policy that will enable it to take equity in and help boost the manufacture of high-tech products such as semiconductors, wafers, storage devices, and plasma and LCD panels.

AOL Sues Over Identity Thefts, Uses New Law
Three civil suits were filed under Virginia's new anti-phishing statute, the Federal Lanham Act, marking the first time an ISP has used the new law.

Oracle Launches Free Database Version
Oracle XE, available as a free 150-Mbyte download, is intended for developers, and there are hardware and memory constraints.

Mobile Phone Sales Up 21% In 2005: Gartner
The top six vendors accounted for 79% of worldwide mobile phone sales in 2005, to the detriment of smaller providers.

IBM Debuts Floating-Point Unit For PowerPC
The extension is designed to provide high-performance, low-power consumption for embedded applications.

All Our Latest News

Watch The News Show

In the current episode:

John Soat With 'Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler!'
More info unveiled about MSFT's "Origami Project," RFID worker shortage, and where is Jeeves?

Larry Greenemeier With 'Securing More Databases'
More and more banking databases are at risk. Is data encryption the answer?

Sacha Lecca With 'Graceful Technology'
Religion adapting to the information age, religious podcasts, and phones offering services for Muslims now available to the public.


4. Grab Bag: News You Need From The Web

Sony Ericsson Launches Photo-Blogging Phones (PC Pro)
They have a 3.2-megapixel sensor and a Xenon flash, but they're not digital cameras. They're Sony's latest mobiles in the form of the K800i and K790i.

Coalition Representing 15 Million Fights AOL Plan (USA Today)
A coalition of unlikely partners, including MoveOn.org, Civic Action, Gun Owners of America, and the Association of Cancer Online Resources, have joined forces to fight AOL's plan to charge businesses for commercial E-mail.

At One Billion, Music Sales By Download Come Of Age (Financial Express)
If you still think of online sales as a business on the fringe of the music industry, take another look. Digital downloads have become a force in the music world.


----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----

New From InformationWeek: Get Your News In A Flash--Literally
InformationWeek.com's latest service is automated E-mail news flashes. You pick the topic and the frequency (real time, daily, or weekly), and we'll do the rest. Sign up by following the link below and be one of the first to take advantage of this latest service.

Do You Access Our Content From A BlackBerry Or Treo?
Many of our readers do, and we want to ensure that you get the best experience in using our content. So we've created a PDA-friendly version of our news content, with similarly streamlined content pages, that should make the PDA experience a good one. Check out our latest enhancement.

-----------------------------------------


5. In Depth: Apple And Security

Analyst Dings Security Vendors For Exploiting Apple Flaws
Rob Enderle is convinced that security companies see Apple as their next big revenue opportunity.

Apple May Be Going After OS X Hacker
When the site of a hacker known among tech circles as Maxxuss went offline, it sparked speculation that its Internet service provider had pulled the plug at Apple's request.

Mac OS X Suffers From 'Critical' Flaw
Several security companies found a critical vulnerability in Apple's OS X that could let attackers cripple a Mac simply by duping users into visiting a malicious Web site.

Blog: A Club Apple Wants Out Of
Windows users most likely yawned at last week's warning that Apple's Safari Web browser contains a critical vulnerability that exposes Mac users to attacks using malicious Zip files with virus-laden payloads. Subsequent reports of an exploit that makes it possible to take advantage of this latest Mac OS X flaw surely elicited no sympathy from long-suffering Internet Explorer devotees.


6. Voice Of Authority: Regulations And Regulators

Down To Business: Time To Regulate The Regulations?
Regulations such as Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA, ITIL, and COBIT certainly do some good, ensuring uniformity, quality, transparency, privacy, and proficiency. But as they take on lives of their own, they instill a false sense of accomplishment. And they can chew up resources that would otherwise be driving new business.


7. White Papers: CD And DVD Archiving

Selecting A CD/DVD Archive Solution
Using recordable CD and DVD discs to archive data makes sense for a host of reasons. One leading provider of automated CD/DVD, Young Minds Inc., has a variety of CD and DVD recording solutions that fit most applications.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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