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More Cyberattacks or Just More Media Attention?

We've failed to take cybersecurity seriously. Now we're paying the piper

3 min read

This has been a banner year for high-profile cybersecurity disasters, with no letup in sight. So far, there have been 251 data breaches—a record-setting pace. Sony's PlayStation and Entertainment Networks have been repeatedly hacked, with more than 100 million of the company's user accounts compromised and its online gaming halted for several weeks. A security breach at the Internet marketing company Epsilon resulted in millions of customers' e-mail addresses being taken from about 100 major corporations, including Disney Destinations in the United States and Dell in Australia. A cyberintrusion at Nonghyup, South Korea's main agricultural cooperative, crashed its banking systems for a week and kept 30 million customers from accessing their accounts. Blackmailers broke into the financial systems of Hyundai Capital, accessed the personal details of 1.75 million customers, and then demanded US $460 000 to keep the purloined information from being made public.

Then there are the targeted attacks against security vendors like Comodo and RSA. A hacker fooled a Comodo group affiliate into issuing Internet SSL certificates to some of the world's largest websites, including Google, Microsoft, Mozilla, Skype, and Yahoo. A partially successful attack against RSA's two-factor authentication security product SecurID, which is used by 30 000 organizations around the world, has led to "significant and tenacious" attacks against a number of major U.S. defense contractors, including the world's largest, Lockheed Martin.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar

You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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