Hacker blogger Quinn Norton is getting a lot of coverage with her blog claiming that the Internet is broken. She argues that every computer and every piece of software we use is vulnerable to hackers because of terrible security flaws. Norton blames these flaws on the fact that developers who face immense pressure to ship software quickly.
Norton says that those bugs may have been there for years unnoticed, leaving systems susceptible to attacks. One of her hacker mates accidentally took control of more than 50,000 computers in four hours after finding a security vulnerability. Another one of her colleagues accidentally shut down a factory for a day after sending a “malformed ping.”
She said that the NSA wasn’t, and isn’t, the great predator of the internet, it’s just the biggest scavenger around. It isn’t doing so well because they are all powerful math wizards of doom. The other problem is software is too complicated and the emphasis placed on security too light.
“The number of people whose job it is to make software secure can practically fit in a large bar, and I’ve watched them drink. It’s not comforting. It isn’t a matter of if you get owned, only a matter of when,” Norton said.