Document Actions

Open Source Software: The Silent Threat at the Heart of the Cyber Security Crisis

Huffington Post - Today, the government launches its cyber security conference following the 'disturbing' number of attacks suffered by government systems. It's good that they recognise there is a serious problem here - though I suspect it's because they know the average voter might suddenly start to care about tech issues following the recent revelations. As soon as the papers get wind of stories about 'hacking', people are bound to ignore the bland reality in favour of an imaginary thriller movie, possibly starring William Hague in a full-length leather trench coat.

Indeed, according to the ICO annual track, protecting personal information ranks as the joint-first public social concern, equal to crime prevention. This is something which is extremely important to a lot of people, and the government are aware that they need to do more.

However, for all that this signals a step in the right direction, the conference - and discussions about online security in general - need to recognise a deep-seated issue in the way we do business and store information online. I'm referring to the popularity of open source software, currently favoured by a range of e-commerce business and governmental services thanks to low associated costs and apparent convenience.