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[FYI] (Fwd) IP: Nation's banks create private computer security system

------- Forwarded message follows -------
Date sent:      	Fri, 1 Oct 1999 22:41:04 -0400
To:             	dcsb@ai.mit.edu, Digital Bearer Settlement List <dbs@philodox.com>,
From:           	Robert Hettinga <rah@shipwright.com>
Subject:        	IP: Nation's banks create private computer security system

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Date:  1 Oct 99 19:13:56 EDT
From: ROBERT HARPER <robert-harper@usa.net>
To: Ignition Point <ignition-point@precision-d.com>
Subject: IP: Nation's banks create private computer security system
Sender: owner-ignition-point@precision-d.com
Reply-To: ROBERT HARPER <robert-harper@usa.net>


  Nation's banks create private computer security system
  6.33 p.m. ET (2240 GMT) October 1, 1999

  By Ted Bridis, Associated Press

  WASHINGTON (AP) - The nation's banking industry has quietly
  wired itself a $1.5 million private computer network to
  share information anonymously about electronic threats from
  rogue employees, software bugs, viruses and hackers, the
  Treasury Department said Friday.

  The Financial Services Information Sharing and Analysis
  Center is the result of orders from President Clinton to
  better protect America's most important industries from
  cyber attacks. It's in a secret location known to only about
  a half-dozen people, but it's believed to be nestled among a
  corridor of high-tech firms in northern Virginia.

  Similar centers are planned in the coming months for seven
  other industries, including telecommunications, oil and gas,
  electrical power, transportation and America's water supply

  This summer, the White House announced its plan to create a
  government-wide security network to protect its most
  important nonmilitary computers.

  "New threats call for new types of solutions,'' said
  Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, adding that banking
  officials need to learn about viruses and malicious software
  that disguises itself as innocuous code.

  Only licensed banks and other government-regulated financial
  firms that become subscribers will be able to exchange
  information or tap into this network's details of known
  security threats. Urgent alerts will be sent by e-mail,
  pager and cellular phones to a bank's experts - who will pay
  $13,000 to $125,000, depending on how many employees are
  using it.

  "Every day, everywhere, people are trying to break into
  financial institutions - and sometimes from within financial
  institutions - trying to take money they're not authorized
  to have,'' said Kawika Daguio, vice president of the
  Washington-based Financial Information Protection

  Names and other identifying details will be stripped from
  submissions to ensure anonymity and encourage honesty - and
  partly so rival banks don't misuse the information and
  regulators can never know a specific financial institution
  was having problems.

  "Once we demonstrated that you could have an anonymous
  capability so you can't trace it, most institutions stood up
  immediately and said, `Let's go do this,''' said Bill
  Marlow, executive vice president for Global Integrity, the
  consulting company in Reston, Va., that built the center.

  Organizers said 16 financial institutions - with a total of
  $4.5 trillion in assets among them - have so far joined the
  network, with 500 to 1,000 more expected to join in the next
  18 months.

  One of the center's greatest strengths, say organizers, will
  be its ability to notice trends: A report by one bank of a
  hacker sniffing around its network becomes more onerous if
  dozens of other banks also report noticing exactly the same

  "Not a day goes by without seeing alerts about security,
  vulnerabilities in the products we use or news stories about
  Internet sites being compromised,'' said Steve Katz of
  Citigroup Inc., the center's coordinator. "What might appear
  to any one company as a random event might be more
  significant if looked at in the aggregate.''

  Although the Treasury Department helped organize the center,
  government leaders said U.S. agencies won't eavesdrop on the
  threat information disclosed by banks. However, the
  government will volunteer details about security problems
  through the FBI's National Infrastructure Protection Center.

  "If they choose to give information to the government,
  that's nice,'' said Richard Clarke of the National Security
  Council. "The government, however, will share information
  with them ... both classified and non-classified

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Robert A. Hettinga <mailto: rah@ibuc.com>
The Internet Bearer Underwriting Corporation <http://www.ibuc.com/>
44 Farquhar Street, Boston, MA 02131 USA
"... however it may deserve respect for its usefulness and antiquity,
[predicting the end of the world] has not been found agreeable to
experience." -- Edward Gibbon, 'Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire'

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