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Microsoft software "riddled with vulnerabilities", trade body claims

Dept of Homeland Security should avoid Microsoft
Thu Aug 28 2003, 17:02
THE US Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA) has urged the US Department of Homeland Security to avoid using Microsoft software.

The Washington based association, which represents members that generate over $200 billion, has issued an open letter to Tom Ridge, Secretary of the department, urging him to review his decision to choose Microsoft for its desktops and servers.

It claims that last week's events relating to the Blaster and SoBig worms, have highlighted problems in cybersecurity.

The letter, from Ed Black, the association's president, said:"We believe that for software to be truly secure it must be well written from the outset with security considerations given a high priority".

It accuses Microsoft of being more interested in economic marketing and competition than security and said the lack of diversity within a network system "amplifies the risk emanating from any vulnerabilities that do exist".

It continues: "Our preliminary findings indicate the severity of the security problems relating to some Microsoft software".

The Blaster worm, it said, crashed the Navy Marine intranet*, the CSX railway system, Maryland's Dept of Motor Vehicles, Air Canada systems, and most seriously earlier this year a nuclear power plant was downed by Slammer.

Microsoft, it claims, isn't guiltless, because it is continuing to "create software riddled with obvious and easily exploited vulnerabilities". µ

* A SMALL correction here. The worm caused an intrusion, rather than a crash, on this particular network.

See Also
Homeland Security awards Dell, Microsoft $90 million contract


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