How to Live with Malware Infections

Get used to it: Malware can't be completely blocked or eliminated. But you can manage your PCs, mobile devices, and networks to function despite being infected

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"We believe that compromise is inevitable, and in order to manage the risk, we need to improve survivability and increase our flexibility," says Malcolm Harkins, vice president of the IT group and chief information security officer at Intel.

The redesign is based on four pillars:

  • A "dynamic trust calculation" that adjusts users privileges as their level of risk changes
  • A segmentation of the IT environment into multiple "trust zones"
  • A rebalancing of prevention, detection, and response controls
  • A clear recognition that users and data must be treated as security perimeters and be protected as such

Living with infection is a fact of life Malware is pervasive and is getting increasingly sophisticated. For many organizations, living with viruses, worms, and other types of malware is becoming a fact of life. In a sense, computer technology is catching up to the reality that biological systems have long had to manage.

As Intel's Harkins says, "I always assume that there is some level of compromise, [and] organizations who think they are malware-free -- or ever will be -- are not adequately understanding the true nature of information risk."

That doesn't mean your systems and applications can't continue to function well and support the business. By taking the right steps, your organization can operate a generally healthy IT environment despite malware intrusions.

This story, "How to live with malware infections," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Follow the latest developments in computer security at InfoWorld.com. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

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