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9/8/2006
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Intel Cuts 10,500 Jobs In Continuing Restructuring

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Airing Dirty Security Laundry
2. Today's Top Story
    - Intel Cuts 10,500 Jobs In Continuing Restructuring
    Related Stories:
    - Intel Market Share Slid To Four-Year Low In Q2: Report
    - Brief: Dow Corning Ships Solar-Grade Silicon
3. Breaking News
    - Vista RC1 Still Not Ready For Prime Time, Partners Say
    - Trojans Fire Zero-Day Attack At Microsoft Word
    - IRS Gives Away $318 Million Because Of Bungled Software Upgrade
    - Firefox Gains Share, IE Loses
    - Dual-Core CPU Buyer's Guide
    - Telephone Telepathy: I Was Just Thinking About You
    - Matsushita Recalls 6,000 Notebook PC Batteries
    - MySpace To Let Musicians Sell Tunes Directly To Members
    - Minneapolis Goes Wi-Fi, With WiMax To Follow
    - IBM Once Again Looking To Software For Growth
    - Mobile Companies Develop New, Faster 4G Technology
4. Grab Bag
    - Apple Cell Phone Nears Debut: Analyst (Forbes.com)
    - Microsoft Releases 'WinFX' As .Net 3.0 (BetaNews)
    - iPod Factory, Newspaper Apologize To Each Other (Associated Press)
5. In Depth: Security
    - Web Apps Come Under Attack In Perverse Coming Of Age
    - More Businesses Deploy WLANs Throughout Buildings
    - The Dark Side Of SOA
    - Network Access Control Systems: Helpful, But There's Room For Improvement
    - CA Names Windows Component As Virus, Then Recants
    - FBI Prepares For Phase One Of Controversial Sentinel Program
6. Voice Of Authority
    - Indian Schools Ditch Microsoft For Linux, Kill Golden Goose
7. White Papers
    - Market-Driven Product Management
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"Security is mostly superstition. It does not exist in nature. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold." -- Helen Keller


1. Editor's Note: Airing Dirty Security Laundry

Everyone in IT needs to read this article about security alerts and how they're created, sometimes in the self-serving interests of the vendors involved.

It's not a new problem, of course, but I'm glad to see this issue being held up to the light. Kudos to reporter Kevin McLaughlin and our sister publication CRN for doing so.

Given how much we've all come to rely on security alerts, and how often IT organizations prioritize their daily workloads around them, it's a problem that's both broad and deep. And it's about time the industry as a whole started talking about this particular elephant in the living room.

The essence of the problem, as I see it: Some suggest that vendors that make their living by selling security software or hardware should not also be in the business of telling customers how serious a particular issue is.

The security vendors, in turn—okay, let's name names: primarily McAfee and Symantec—respond that since they're in the business of fixing software that "breaks" due to bugs and viruses, they're in a particularly good place to know how critical an issue is, especially when compared to other issues of a similar ilk.

I can see this point, but I believe it essentially boils down to an old IT issue. Companies that consult shouldn't also be in the business of selling hardware and software. Now most of us old warhorses know this isn't necessarily always the case and that even supposedly unbiased advisers can have an agenda, whether it's to keep selling more services or just to have fun watching the sparks fly. It also doesn't help when those of us in the media jump all over every security warning, bulletin, and "survey." (News bulletin: "Security vendor says security problems are getting worse." Um, hello? What else would we expect them to say? Even if it's true, there's an appearance of a conflict of interest here, and all of us would be much better off by foreswearing 95% of these types of stories.)

As all this is happening, new security problems keep appearing, from AT&T's recent Web site hack to organizations' concerns about Web applications in general and service-oriented architectures in particular.

Okay, so we know what's wrong. How to fix it? Well, for starters we do have organizations including Secundia, the SANS Institute, and, despite its flaws, the CERT. These groups aren't being paid by any particular vendroid to say anything and are, as far as I can determine, as free of product hype as possible. In other words, if all three of these groups start screaming "Danger, Will Robinson," I'd submit it's time to pay attention to the issue at hand. If they disagree, which the CRN story says they're doing more frequently these days, there's another way to think about it.

Ultimately, it's up to each of us to know our own environment and to keep the perpetual index finger in the air to know what's going on. We all need to be smart, stay informed, and understand our systems well enough to figure out what needs fixing first, or risk being out of business. No vendor, well-intentioned or not, can make these decisions for us; we need to take this responsibility for ourselves. No one else knows what an acceptable level of risk may be for each of us. That's something IT and the business units need to work on and agree upon together.

So what do you think? Is this controversy about security alerts something to pay attention to, and if so how do you do that? Or is it a nonproblem of the industry's own making that a little or a lot of common sense will go a long way in resolving? To respond or to read more, please see my blog entry.

Johanna Ambrosio
jambrosio@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Intel Cuts 10,500 Jobs In Continuing Restructuring
The company expects to generate $5 billion in savings over the next two years by reducing head count to 92,000 by the middle of 2007.

Related Stories:

Intel Market Share Slid To Four-Year Low In Q2: Report
The company's share of the global chip market shrunk to 11%, down from 13% in the first quarter, according to iSuppli.

Brief: Dow Corning Ships Solar-Grade Silicon
The PV 1101-blend material has been tested at several customer production sites.


3. Breaking News

Vista RC1 Still Not Ready For Prime Time, Partners Say
The software has enough bugs that partners and analysts say it's only beta quality, not a release candidate, and they're skeptical Microsoft will be able to get Vista out the door by its November deadline.

Trojans Fire Zero-Day Attack At Microsoft Word
Attackers are exploiting a new unpatched bug in Microsoft Word 2000, and security experts' warning levels are on the rise.

IRS Gives Away $318 Million Because Of Bungled Software Upgrade
A government report is blaming a botched software project for the loss of $318 million, which the IRS mistakenly paid in bad tax refunds.

Firefox Gains Share, IE Loses
The alternative Web browser extends its inch-by-inch gains against Microsoft's market-leading Internet Explorer.

Dual-Core CPU Buyer's Guide
With Intel and AMD embroiled in a performance and price war, choosing a desktop processor can be tough. We make the decision easier with a guide to chip choices and specs, as well as pointers to some bargains.

Telephone Telepathy: I Was Just Thinking About You
An English scientist has run experiments on that "aha" feeling people get when they think of someone and then get a phone call or e-mail from that person.

Matsushita Recalls 6,000 Notebook PC Batteries
The battery supplier hasn't been identified, but Matsushita says it's not Panasonic or Sony.

MySpace To Let Musicians Sell Tunes Directly To Members
The social networking service will use tools provided by Snocap, a company that sells digital licensing and copyright management services. Snocap was co-founded by Shawn Fanning, who launched Napster in 1999.

Minneapolis Goes Wi-Fi, With WiMax To Follow
Suppliers BelAir Networks and US Internet say the deployment will cover a 54-square-mile sector of the city.

IBM Once Again Looking To Software For Growth
IBM has been on a buying tear, gobbling up four companies in one month and two dozen in the past two years.

Mobile Companies Develop New, Faster 4G Technology
4G will download a movie in 5.6 seconds and 100 songs in 2.4 seconds. Mobile telcos hope 4G will ramp up mobile phone usage in a way that 3G hasn't.

All Our Latest News


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4. Grab Bag

Apple Cell Phone Nears Debut: Analyst (Forbes.com)
The $200 phone's design will be similar to that of the iPod Nano, according to an American Technology Research analyst, and it will likely come in three colors: white, black, and platinum.

Microsoft Releases 'WinFX' As .Net 3.0 (BetaNews)
Microsoft released .Net Framework 3.0 over the weekend. The release, formerly called WinFX, consists of the various foundations that are intended to make developing for Windows Vista easier.

iPod Factory, Newspaper Apologize To Each Other (Associated Press)
How quickly things change. A week ago, the owners of the iPod factory accused by journalists of substandard working conditions retaliated against the reporters who broke the story—by suing them for a ton of money and freezing their assets. Now the factory owners have dropped the case completely, putting out a joint statement with the newspaper that employs the reporters.


5. In Depth: Security

Web Apps Come Under Attack In Perverse Coming Of Age
The growth in hosted software, plus attacks on AT&T's site and others, has IT managers worried about the vulnerability of Web applications.

More Businesses Deploy WLANs Throughout Buildings
Faster speeds, better security, and more applications spur deployment of pervasive wireless LANs.

The Dark Side Of SOA
Building a service-oriented architecture is harder and takes more time and money than expected, but businesses aren't giving up on the effort, according to a survey by InformationWeek Research.

Network Access Control Systems: Helpful, But There's Room For Improvement
Network access control, while not easy, lets more UC Berkeley students connect.

CA Names Windows Component As Virus, Then Recants
Computer Associates eTrust Antivirus software apparently thought a part of Windows Server 2003 was malware—then a short while later changed its designation.

FBI Prepares For Phase One Of Controversial Sentinel Program
A critical design review next month will determine whether the FBI will move forward with the program.


6. Voice Of Authority

Indian Schools Ditch Microsoft For Linux, Kill Golden Goose
Proving that $1.7 billion doesn't go as far as it used to in winning over foreign governments, a school district in the country is set to rid its computers of Microsoft Windows and install Linux instead. Paul McDougall explains.


7. White Papers

Market-Driven Product Management
This white paper introduces a framework for improving the earlier phases of product development, enabling organizations to develop the right products, with the right content, for the right market, at the right time.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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