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Spyware, Viruses, & Security forum

General discussion

What should I tell the board about viruses?

by Donna Buenaventura / March 29, 2004 10:48 AM PST

Present virus information in risk management terms

This issue should be presented in risk management terms when you talk to top management. In a straightforward and honest manner, you should present a summary of the threats, vulnerabilities and consequences using detailed examples from recent experiences within the company and across the industry.

Threats should be in terms of classes of actors (individuals, groups, nature) with capabilities and intents to use viruses. Vulnerabilities should be identified in terms of which computer systems and resulting business functions are susceptible to viruses; and consequences should be couched in terms of the potential harm that can befall the company as a result of viruses exploiting these vulnerabilities.

Consequences should be in business terms, including but not limited to the harm to the brand, the direct and indirect effects of corruption, the loss of availability, and the use of company systems by attackers after the virus is granted access, and loss of confidentiality.

1. Use familiar business language and keep it simple
2. Explain the need to be prepared for trouble
3. Use language the board will understand
4. Illustrate the risks to the business of poor security
5. Explain your defences to a worst-case attack scenario
6. Talk about the operative effects of downtime

Computer Weekly

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