Fox Business News: Is Your Computer Network Safe?

Friday, March 19, 2010

There was a time not long ago when computer hacking brought to mind an image of an anti-social teenager hiding in his parents’ dark basement cracking code for the thrill of it and later posting his exploits online under a dangerous sounding nickname like “Plague.”

But recent hacks on some of the world’s most sophisticated technology companies have showcased another kind of cyber criminal, one that includes foreign governments and organized crime cartels, unconstrained by social norms and backed by nearly unlimited resources.

As attacks become ever more clever, is any computer user really safe?

“If you are dealing with a sophisticated nation state adversary then obviously there are a lot of resources they can bring to bear and it would be difficult for the private sector to face that sort of attack,” said Dmitri Alperovitch, vice president of threat research at McAfee Inc. (MFE: 40.3, 0.15, 0.37%) “Just like we don’t expect private sector companies to be able to face an armed attack by an army.”