Maximum Security: Fourth Edition

Maximum Security: Fourth Edition
Sams; 4th edition | ISBN-10: 0672324598 | 976 pages | December 16, 2002 | CHM

Security is an enormous task, the amount of information in this book, both written and referenced, is intimidating. Furthermore, the reality that it is necessary for your survival can raise your blood pressure and the number of hours you lay awake at night. Fortunately, it is not necessary to do it all at once and there are software tools that can make the scanning for security problems much easier.
This book contains complete descriptions of the most common forms of computer security problems, including how attackers use the weaknesses and links to additional information. Computer security is an area of computing that is very close to the shadowy world of spies and secret agents. Fourteen contributors other than the lead author are listed on the inside front cover, four of which are not pictured. The lead author is also listed as anonymous.
In terms of content, the descriptions are complete, both in coverage and detail. Somewhere, somehow, the people who manage the IT facilities at organizations must make contact with the material in this book and it is as good a place as any to do so. The authors also do an excellent job in aggregating references to more detailed explanations of the various areas of security. You could literally spend weeks following all the research paths listed for most of the topics.
The only people who can afford to do nothing are those who have nothing. Everyone else should read this book and take the appropriate actions to protect themselves.

There is no task more daunting than one that is fundamentally impossible, extensive and yet necessary. Computer security is like that, as the only secure computer is one that is disconnected from all power sources. The moment it is powered up in a mode that allows useful work to be done, it becomes vulnerable. Furthermore, the number of ways it is vulnerable is effectively infinite, meaning that the number is so large and complex, that it is not possible to handle them all. Finally, it is necessary, as the world is full of a large number of people whose sole purpose in life seems to be to cause as much damage and frustration as they possibly can. Therefore, there is no choice but to apply as many security features as possible to all our computer systems.
This book is an overview of the primary aspects of computer security. Split up into the six broad categories: security concepts, hacking 101, a defender's toolkit, weapons of mass destruction, architecture, platforms and security; and security and integrated services, there is also an extensive bibliography of websites, books and software. If you are interested in an overview of computer security, then this book will provide it.
However, the main value that readers will get from the book is from the links to more detailed information. It invaluable in tracking down detailed information concerning topics such as specific types of distributed denial of service attacks, steganography, password cracking dictionaries and communication protocols. The encyclopedia form of the book makes it very valuable as a primary initial reference.
Useful as an overview for people seeking their first knowledge of computer security, this book will also have value for the IT worker who needs pointers to specific information regarding computer security.

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