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by CSO Contributor

New Criticism of Pre-War Intelligence; Second U.S. Arrest over Internet Virus; The World of Software Flaws; Nationwide Blackout in Italy; Gorilla Escapes Zoo in Boston

Sep 29, 20033 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

New Criticism of Pre-War Intelligence

According to todays New York Times, leaders of the House Intelligence Committee sent a letter to CIA head George Tenet saying there were “too many uncertainties” in the outdated and inadequate information underlying a National Intelligence Estimate that the administration used to justify the war. At the same time, the Times reports, officials confirmed that Mr. Tenet had asked the Justice Department to look into whether one or more administration officials had leaked information to the news media disclosing the identity of a covert C.I.A. agent. The Washington Post today reports that President Bush’s aides promised yesterday to cooperate with a Justice Department inquiry into the administration leak, but Democrats charged that the administration cannot credibly investigate itself and called for an independent probe.Second U.S. Arrest over Internet VirusBCC News story this morning, Seattle police arrested a youth in connection with the Blaster worm. The youth is charged with “intentionally causing damage and attempting to cause damage to protected computers,” because of suspicion he or she (identity not revealed) created the variant, RPCSDBOT. Although the extent of infection is not known, the variant is thought to have instructed infected computers to launch an attack on a Microsoft update page that would have fixed the flaw.

According to a

The World of Software FlawsNew York Times offers an overview of the state of computer security against viruses and worms. Starting with a description of Microsofts Security Response Center, it talks about the dynamic of patches versus malicious code, touches on the market dominance of Microsoft, and discusses government responses, including the consideration of legislation. It concludes with quotes suggesting the culture of the software industry must and will change from a make-it-fast-fix-it-later model.

An article in todays

Nationwide Blackout in, almost all of the country’s 57 million people were affected—more than in last month’s power collapse in the U.S. Northeast and Canada. But emergency services said the outages occurring when most people were asleep kept the casualty count low. Electricity was restored across Italy as investigations were under way into the cause of the country’s worst power failure since World War II. Storm-related damage to power lines in Switzerland is the leading explanation for the blackout. The BBC reports that energy officials have warned of serious deficiencies in Italy’s electricity system following the power cuts.

A nationwide power blackout hit Italy in the middle of the night Sunday, creating chaos, stalling lifts and stranding travelers. According to a story on

Gorilla Escapes Zoo in BostonThe Boston Globe today, a 300-pound, 5-year-old gorilla escaped from the Franklin Park Zoo last night just before closing time. More than 50 officials from Boston police, State Police, environmental police, the zoo and the Animal Rescue League swarmed the area around the zoo, closing streets all around Franklin Park. The gorilla, who had escaped his enclosure once before in August but returned on his own, this time left the zoo after one confrontation in which he bit an 18-year-old off-duty zoo worker and scratched the toddler who was with her. Both humans survived the ordeal, the Globe says. The gorilla was captured after about two hours, heavily sedated with tranquilizer darts, on a path on the outskirts of the park. Park officials say the animal would not be destroyed but also not displayed to the public for an uncertain time; meanwhile

According to a story in