Protecting Against the Weakest Link: Information Security in the Age of WikiLeaks (Whitepaper by intimus Consulting)

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WikiLeaks has come to international prominence (or notoriety, depending on the perspective) for its work in publishing private, secret and classified materials obtained via leaks from government sources. A Whitepaper by intimus Consulting

WikiLeaks has come to international prominence (or notoriety, depending on the perspective) for its work in publishing private, secret and classified materials obtained via leaks from government sources.WikiLeaks has published top-secret information from the U.S. military’s wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and has also shared thousands of pages of U.S. State Department cables with the world. The U.S. government and other governments around the world are learning that in the age of WikiLeaks, no secret is safe. What does this mean to international companies or organizations? This white paper shows a few lessons of WikiLeaks for information security leaders in today’s business and government organizations.

Information travels fast

In 1971, U.S. military analyst Daniel Ellsberg, having grown disillusioned with his country’s war in Vietnam, decided to leak a set of confidential military documents called “The Pentagon Papers” to the New York Times and other newspapers.
The Pentagon Papers was a secret official history of the U.S. government’s decision-making and escalating involvement in the Vietnam war; its publication helped to decisively turn public opinion against the war and led Daniel Ellsberg to be prosecuted for espionage (he was later released following a mistrial).
In 1971, leaking such a vast quantity of sensitive information was a complex and time-consuming process. Daniel Ellsberg spent hours secretly making photocopies of over 7,000 pages of documents, which he covertly delivered (in person) to contacts at various newspapers and in the U.S. Senate. In 1971, it took time and effort and physical space to manage so many thousands of pages of information.
Today, in the Age of WikiLeaks, information is practically invisible, travelling over broadband and cloud applications. Instead of Ellsberg’s copy machine and stacks of paper documents, WikiLeaks traffics in secure servers and encrypted e-mails. Instead of being shared with a few newspaper reporters, confidential information today can be posted online and be viewed instantly by millions of people worldwide.
The information that any company or organisation would most like to keep secret can be disseminated, copied and shared more widely and easily than ever before.

Therefore they should have information security protocols in place to keep up to speed with these latest developments.

The full Whitepaper can be read and downloaded under http://www.intimus.com

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Dagmar Strunz
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