virus


Bob Walsh (walsh@endor.harvard.edu)
8 Nov 88 13:48:42 GMT


Since the virus reportedly includes a quick implementation of a password
cracking scheme, since the cracker did not personally aggressively eradicate
it from the internet that night (eg., by using a copy of the virus to
distribute its own fixes or by personally submitting an explanation, fixes,
and an apology), and since it has taken almost a whole week to learn the
facts, I believe that he should NOT be held up as a role model. The mistake
may not be wholly innocent.

The act was unfortunate. Increasing the security of the Internet is a
beneficial side-effect, but could have been achieved another way.

I agree that there are many individuals who work in a positive fashion
who unfortunately go unrecognized at times like this. The cracker possessed
no special skills; others could have done the same thing if given the
inclination. It is a lack of possession (of judgement over an interval of
time) which sets him apart.

If an RFC is developed, I believe it should include the issues raised in
a very pithy tcp-ip article sent yesterday, which included a discussion of
potential ramifications for the Internet, society's view of computers and
computer scientists...



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