The Edges of Technology
A few stories from the headlines have attracted my attention these last few weeks. “New Trojan viruses that reside on computers and send the computers information of to an unknown server ‐ excellent tools for spying on businesses.” “Government web traffic hijacked to Chinese servers.” And an endless parade of vehicles recalled because of software issues.
When technology works right, it’s great ‐‐ but when it goes bad, it’s often worse than never having had that technology at all. The failures come from many areas, but all of the failures have common roots. Insufficient testing, and testing done in controlled environments. Testing anywhere outside of the real world environments where the equipment will be expected to perform is not proper testing. While these incidents all are software or computer related, the same failures occur in other systems ‐‐ and for the same reason.
As business and technical professionals, we need to think clearly about what we are creating, what it is supposed to be, and how it will be used. We also need to think about how our creations can be misused or improperly used.
As a note, antiviral and malware programs are only effective against 24% of attacks. So right now the game is to the hackers.
Nothing is ever foolproof. Bigger, better, and more sophisticated fools are minted each and every day.