IT Continuity in the Face of Mishaps

IT Continuity in the Face of Mishaps

William H. Friedman (University of Central Arkansas, USA)
Copyright: © 2009 |Pages: 7
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-855-0.ch025
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Abstract

This chapter is management oriented. It first proposes a general theoretical context for IT disasters within the wider class of all types of disasters to which a business is subject—whether caused by natural or human action. After this theoretical discussion, numerous practical and proactive prevention methods then are suggested that can be applied both before and after an IT disaster. Implementation of these measures should contribute greatly to reducing both the occurrence of disasters and the damage that might be wrought by most adverse events not under our control.
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Introduction

Adversity planning has come to the forefront of the public’s concerns because of both the scope and frequency of news making natural disasters. “Ordinary” computer and networking failures, no matter how far reaching the consequences and importance of the entities affected, are reported with such regularity as hardly to cause a stir in the public arena—except among those affected, for example, the investment community (Campbell, Gordon, Loeb, & Zhou, 2003; Cavusoglu, Mishra, & Raghunathan, 2004). Both these realizations point to the need for reassessing the nature of past and probable future problems as well as instituting effective preventive and recovery measures. A theoretic context is provided for the subsequent discussion of disasters.

This chapter considers topics related to disasters in a natural progression:

  • What we think about disasters in general and why we need to revise the conventional “wisdom” about disasters

  • Why disaster matters so much—its consequences

  • Legal requirements and methods for disaster planning

  • How to be successful in minimizing loss from a disaster and instituting controls

  • Ensuring physical security

  • Post-disaster IT` continuity and recovery

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Revising Common Assumptions About Disaster

First we need to revise our assumptions about disasters:

  • 1.

    Catastrophes occur independently of one another. Comment: Any given disaster may be due to a cause that does not disappear after the first strike. Malware creators propagate their exploits in waves.

  • 2.

    Disasters tend to repeat themselves with only minor differences.

  • 3.

    In the short term, the chances of experiencing a calamity are low.

  • 4.

    It is unlikely that a calamity like the last one will occur any time soon.

  • 5.

    The number of calamitous events in any narrow timeframe or given place will be constant over time

With knowledge gained through bitter and repeated experience, organizations would do well to call into question the guiding assumptions mentioned above and consider the following points (which counter the above assumptions):

  • 1.

    Weather, seismic, and especially socially caused traumatic events seem to feed off one another.

  • 2.

    Greater communication and transportation resources are now available to ill-intentioned people. Comment: Even without any apparent communication, a relatively recently noted phenomenon is the simultaneous discovery and creation of new behaviors—both good and ill—in geographically separated locales. Ideas, which crop up in one place, may arise in another at approximately the same time. This situation is evidently part of nature. For instance, Japanese primatologists observed a single macaque monkey who learned how to wash sweet potatoes before eating them and that this learned procedure spread to the entire troupe (Narby, 2005). Other instances of primate learning have spread to other locations without any apparent communication.

  • 3.

    Increased extremism and climatic changes (brought about by greater industrial activity, perhaps) trigger more human-made disasters.

  • 4.

    Ideologically motivated damage and employee sabotage are increasingly the norm.

  • 5.

    One calamitous event can be seen to stimulate a recurrence rather quickly. An instability here and now augments instability later and nearby.

  • 6.

    The pace of adverse happenings is quickening.

  • 7.

    New kinds of items causing disaster are emerging, for example, denial of service attacks, rootkits.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Failback: Resumption of operations at restored site of disaster.

Rootkit: Software that introduces and hides running programs, either legitimate or illegitimate from the operating system and may take control of a computer. A rootkit is notoriously difficult to detect and remove (Poulsen, 2003).

Security of a System: “An objective measure of the number of its vulnerabilities and their severity;” also the ability to detect, anticipate, and avoid attack or calamity.

Exposure: Amount of possible financial loss in a disaster.

Champion: A person of prestige in an organization who can ensure that a project will progress as expected.

Hot Site: Backup site usually operated by a service company enabling a company to resume its IT processing. Data are transmitted to the site in real time, so the site has immediately current data. The hardware is already in place to continue processing.

Warm Site: Backup location where data are transmitted only periodically instead of continuously. The hardware is already in place to continue processing from the last transmission of data.

Risk: Probability of a loss; sometimes, the probability of a loss multiplied by the exposure.

IT: Abbreviation of information technology; the functional unit in an organization that processes data to yield information.

Open Source: The actual coding statements in a program are made publically available, without charge; responsible programmers are free to suggest, or in some cases, modify or add to the program.

Failover: Ability of a disrupted system to switch to a working system with seamless continuity.

Halon Gas: An agent for extinguishing fires without causing damage to equipment that water might bring about.

Close Source: A program with a restrictive license designed to maintain a degree of secrecy about the code; only the execution modules are distributed.

Cold Site: A relatively inexpensive alternative to other backup sites, since there is no hardware or transmitted data already in place to resume operations.

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Table of Contents
Preface
Jatinder N. D. Gupta, Sushil Sharma
Acknowledgment
Jatinder N. D. Gupta, Sushil Sharma
Chapter 1
Xin Luo, Qinyu Liao
In computer virology, advanced encryption algorithms, on the bright side, can be utilized to effectively protect valuable information assets of... Sample PDF
Ransomware: A New Cyber Hijacking Threat to Enterprises
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Chapter 2
Joon S. Park
E-commerce has grown immensely with the increase in activity on the Internet, and this increase in activity, while immeasurable, has also presented... Sample PDF
E-Commerce: The Benefits, Security Risks, and Countermeasures
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Chapter 3
Pamela Ajoku
Even though weapons and money are considered important factors for running a modern world, at the end of the day, it is all about controlling and... Sample PDF
Information Warfare: Survival of the Fittest
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Chapter 4
Gaeil An, Joon S. Park
In this chapter, we discuss the evolution of the enterprise security federation, including why the framework should be evolved and how it has been... Sample PDF
Evolution of Enterprise Security Federation
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Chapter 5
Roy Ng
The hypergrowth of computing and communications technologies increases security vulnerabilities to organizations. The lack of resources training... Sample PDF
A Holistic Approach to Information Security Assurance and Risk Management in an Enterprise
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Chapter 6
John D’Arcy, Anat Hovav
A number of academic studies that focus on various aspects of information security management (ISM) have emerged in recent years. This body of work... Sample PDF
An Integrative Framework for the Study of Information Security Management Research
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Chapter 7
Aditya Ponnam
Organizations worldwide recognize the importance of a comprehensive, continuously evolving risk assessment process, built around a solid risk... Sample PDF
Information Systems Risk Management: An Audit and Control Approach
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Chapter 8
Udaya Kiran Tupakula
In this chapter we discuss Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks in networks such as the Internet, which have become significantly prevalent... Sample PDF
Distributed Denial of Service Attacks in Networks
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Chapter 9
Andy Luse
This chapter describes various firewall conventions, and how these technologies operate when deployed on a corporate network. Terms associated with... Sample PDF
Firewalls as Continuing Solutions for Network Security
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Chapter 10
Jamie Twycross
The immune system provides a rich metaphor for computer security: anomaly detection that works in nature should work for machines. However, early... Sample PDF
An Immune-Inspired Approach to Anomaly Detection
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Chapter 11
Wasim A. Al-Hamdani
This chapter introduces cryptography from information security phase rather than from deep mathematical and theoretical aspects, along with... Sample PDF
Cryptography for Information Security
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Chapter 12
Carlo Belletini
The chapter introduces and describes representative defense mechanisms to protect from both basic and advanced exploitation of low-level coding... Sample PDF
Memory Corruption Attacks, Defenses, and Evasions
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Chapter 13
Dalila Boughaci, Brahim Oubeka, Abdelkader Aissioui, Habiba Drias, Belaïd Benhamou
This chapter presents the design and the implementation of a decentralized firewall. The latter uses autonomous agents to coordinately control the... Sample PDF
Design and Implementation of a Distributed Firewall
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Chapter 14
Tom Coffey
This chapter concerns the correct and reliable design of modern security protocols. It discusses the importance of formal verification of security... Sample PDF
A Formal Verification Centred Development Process for Security Protocols
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Chapter 15
Ahsan Habib
This chapter develops a distributed monitoring scheme that uses edge-to-edge measurements to identify congested links and capture the misbehaving... Sample PDF
Edge-to-Edge Network Monitoring to Detect Service Violations and DoS Attacks
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Chapter 16
Doug White, Alan Rea
Hard disk wipes are a crucial component of computing security. However, more often than not, hard drives are not adequately processed before either... Sample PDF
A "One-Pass" Methodology for Sensitive Data Disk Wipes
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Chapter 17
Lijun Liao
This chapter deals with the issues concerning e-mail communication security. We analyze the most popular security mechanisms and standards related... Sample PDF
Securing E-Mail Communication with XML Technology
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Chapter 18
Li Yang, Raimund K. Ege, Lin Luo
This chapter describes our approach to handle security in a complex Distributed Virtual Environment (DVE). The modules of such an environment all... Sample PDF
Aspect-Oriented Analysis of Security in Distributed Virtual Environment
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Chapter 19
Information Availability  (pages 230-239)
Deepak Khazanchi
This chapter describes the concept of information availability (IAV) which is considered an important element of information security. IAV is... Sample PDF
Information Availability
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Chapter 20
Siraj Ahmed Shaikh
The purpose of this chapter is to introduce the reader to the research area of formal analysis of authentication protocols. It briefly introduces... Sample PDF
Formal Analysis and Design of Authentication Protocols
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Chapter 21
Rajeev R. Raje, Alex Crespi, Omkar J. Tilak, Andrew M. Olson
Component-based software development offers a promising technique for creating distributed systems. It does require a framework for specifying... Sample PDF
Access Control Frameworks for a Distributed System
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Chapter 22
Manish Gupta, JinKyu Lee, H. R. Rao
The Internet has emerged as the dominant medium in enabling banking transactions. Adoption of e-banking has witnessed an unprecedented increase over... Sample PDF
Implications of FFIEC Guidance on Authentication in Electronic Banking
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Chapter 23
Sue Conger
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Disruptive Technology Impacts on Security
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Chapter 24
Sushma Mishra
Internal auditing has become increasingly important in current business environments. In this era of the Sarbanes- Oxley Act and other similar... Sample PDF
Internal Auditing for Information Assurance
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Chapter 25
William H. Friedman
This chapter is management oriented. It first proposes a general theoretical context for IT disasters within the wider class of all types of... Sample PDF
IT Continuity in the Face of Mishaps
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Chapter 26
Yvette Ghormley
This chapter describes the tools that businesses can use to create a Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plan. Utilizing business modeling... Sample PDF
Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plans
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Chapter 27
Yvette Ghormley
The number and severity of attacks on computer and information systems in the last two decades has steadily risen and mandates the use of security... Sample PDF
Security Policies and Procedures
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Chapter 28
Arjmand Samuel
This chapter outlines the overall access control policy engineering framework in general and discusses the subject of validation of access control... Sample PDF
Enterprise Access Control Policy Engineering Framework
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Chapter 29
Sushil K. Sharma, Jatinder N.D. Gupta
The purpose of the information security policy is to establish an organization-wide approach to prescribe mechanisms that help identify and prevent... Sample PDF
Information Security Policies: Precepts and Practices
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Chapter 30
Paul D. Witman
This chapter provides a set of guidelines to assist information assurance and security researchers in creating, negotiating, and reviewing... Sample PDF
A Guide to Non-Disclosure Agreements for Researchers
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Chapter 31
Omkar J. Tilak
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Chapter 32
Arjan Durresi
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Spatial Authentication Using Cell Phones
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Chapter 33
Sushil K. Sharma, Jatinder N.D. Gupta, Ajay K. Gupta
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Plugging Security Holes in Online Environment
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Chapter 34
Erik Graham, Paul John Steinbart
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Six Keys to Improving Wireless Security
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Chapter 35
Robert W. Proctor, E. Eugene Schultz, Kim-Phuong L. Vu
Many measures that enhance information security and privacy exist. Because these measures involve humans in various ways, their effectiveness... Sample PDF
Human Factors in Information Security and Privacy
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Chapter 36
Wm. Arthur Conklin
Software defects lead to security vulnerabilities, which cost businesses millions of dollars each year and threaten the security of both individuals... Sample PDF
Threat Modeling and Secure Software Engineering Process
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Chapter 37
Christopher M. Botelho, Joseph A. Cazier
The threat of social engineering attacks is prevalent in today’s society. Even with the pervasiveness of mass media’s coverage of hackers and... Sample PDF
Guarding Corporate Data from Social Engineering Attacks
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Chapter 38
Tom Clark
Data storage is playing an increasingly visible role in securing application data in the data center. Today virtually all large enterprises and... Sample PDF
Data Security for Storage Area Networks
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Chapter 39
Edgar Weippl
This chapter outlines advanced options for security training. It builds on previous publications (Weippl 2005, 2006) and expands them by including... Sample PDF
Security Awareness: Virtual Environments and E-Learning
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Chapter 40
Manish Gupta
Enterprises are increasingly interested in new and cost effective technologies to leverage existing investments in IT and extend capabilities to... Sample PDF
Security-Efficient Identity Management Using Service Provisioning (Markup Language)
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Chapter 41
Dwayne Stevens, David T. Green
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A Strategy for Enterprise VoIP Security
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Chapter 42
Jose M. Torres
This chapter presents an Information Systems Security Management Framework (ISSMF) which encapsulates eleven Critical Success Factors (CSFs) along... Sample PDF
Critical Success Factors and Indicators to Improve Information Systems Security Management Actions
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Chapter 43
Rebecca H. Rutherfoord
This chapter will deal with issues of privacy, societal, and ethical concerns in enterprise security. Security for a company is defined as... Sample PDF
Privacy, Societal, and Ethical Concerns in Security
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Chapter 44
Rodolfo Villarroel, Eduardo Fernández-Medina, Juan Trujillo, Mario Piattini
This chapter presents an approach for designing secure Data Warehouses (DWs) that accomplish the conceptual modeling of secure DWs independently... Sample PDF
An MDA Compliant Approach for Designing Secure Data Warehouses
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Chapter 45
Hai Wang
This chapter introduces the survivability evaluation, especially on the corresponding evaluation criteria and modeling techniques. The content of... Sample PDF
Survivability Evaluation Modeling Techniques and Measures
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Chapter 46
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With the rise of the Internet, computer systems appear to be more vulnerable than ever from security attacks. Much attention has been focused on the... Sample PDF
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Chapter 47
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About the Contributors