On Cyber Patrol

April 2008


OK, listen up: Spot quiz. From the choice of acronym definitions below, select the ones that are correct, relevant, applicable and necessary for your immediate task set and strategic objectives. You will do this with someone barking/whining/sobbing/screaming in your ear, a flood of e-mails marked urgent clogging your mailbox, your phone(s) and Blackberry all going off simultaneously (with an embarrassing ring tone) and someone yelling to see you front and center immediately. For those in theatre, we’re going to lob a mortar round or two nearby for added excitement. 

March 2008


It is easy to say, if he had just used common sense he wouldn’t have lost his Common Access Card (CAC). She should have had the common sense not to leave her thumb drive in the coffee shop. What is common sense? It’s the knowledge and experience we start to develop as soon as we are born. For example, the pot on the stove is hot: don’t touch it; the ice is slippery: walk carefully; the information is sensitive: encrypt and protect it, etc.

February 2008


Imagine you have two cabinets in your kitchen. One is labeled “Poisons,” and the other is marked “Tasty Treats.” Okay, it’s a strange kitchen. On the counter below are two identical containers. They are identical in every way—same weight, same size and same appearance. Neither container is labeled. One of the containers is near the cabinet that says Poisons, the other is near the cabinet that says Tasty Treats. It might be a fair guess that the one near the Treats cabinet is just that—something good to eat. The other one must be for rattraps.

January 2008

It seems so innocent, downloading a game or other entertainment to pass the time during a tedious or stressful deployment. Yet, some of the dangerous cyber-critters that hitch a ride on many of those “fun” downloads make the fleas your dog brought home last summer seem like a welcome addition to the household.

December 2007

Many threats you can recognize instantly. For example, the drunk driver careening towards you, the group of armed men forming on a nearby rooftop, a snarling dog with its ears back or your sister-in-law and her eight kids pulling into your driveway. Well, maybe the in-law and her brood are not really threats, but at least you can see them coming. Cyber threats are more insidious. They can surprise you like high blood pressure or a spot inspection.

November 2007

A recent study showed that people have two great fears at work: failure and the boss.  That's no big surprise.  SPAN>It was that way in our parents' day.  The way they handled it was to think before they acted so that mistakes were reduced and the boss was kept happy. Now these classic fears have a new critical factor – time and how little of it there seems to be. SPAN>