Re: [fw-wiz] Re: Ethics, morality and the industry

From: ArkanoiD (
Date: 11/10/04

  • Next message: ArkanoiD: "Re: [fw-wiz] Re: Ethics, morality and the industry"
    To: Mike Smith <>
    Date: Wed, 10 Nov 2004 19:41:02 +0300

    I *WAS* a "bad guy" for a long time. But they did never catch me, so my
    criminal record is clean ;-)

    I'd even say "bad" and "good" are just players in the game. And it would be
    unwise to blame black hats for lack of ethics: some of them follow their ethics,
    some do not. Just like white hats.

    There is only one problem with hiring ex-hackers as security professionals:
    most of them have no clue in creating reasonable treat models, must of them are
    just good in finding *vulnerabilities* and fixing those, but creating secure design
    may be beyond their abilities.

    On Thu, Oct 28, 2004 at 03:29:38PM -0400, Mike Smith wrote:
    > <de-lurk>
    > The man committed crimes, was caught and convicted, and served the time awarded
    > by various governments. From what I read, he has been clean for a quarter of a
    > century. Indeed, he has helped police authorities fight criminal activities
    > such as he once engaged in.
    > I guess the issue is how long does it take before one accepts that a convicted
    > person has truly reformed? If the answer is "forever," then what is the point
    > in ever letting him out of jail? Can criminals never acknowledge the error of
    > their ways and return to civilized society? Can we not learn anything from
    > them?
    > Here in Canada, for instance, a convicted person must serve his full sentence
    > and remain "of good conduct" for three to five years (depending on the offence)
    > afterwards, and then he can apply for a pardon, which sets aside his criminal
    > record (but does not destroy it; by the way, some offences, notably violent
    > ones, are not pardonable). The thinking is that the person has "paid his debt
    > to society" and is entitled to a relatively unfettered attempt to contribute
    > once again.
    > This is _not_ to suggest that I approve of hiring self-proclaimed ex-hackers as
    > security professionals. By and large, they have not "paid their debts." There
    > is no evidence or behaviour that would lead you to conclude they have reformed
    > their ways.
    > Disclosure: I'm planning on attending the CSI conference (if upper management
    > approves the travel request).
    > <lurk>
    > --- Paul D. Robertson wrote:
    > >
    > > This year's CSI conference features the self-advancing "Catch me if you
    > > can" guy, Frank Abagnale as a keynote speaker.
    > >
    > > Because of this, one of my co-workers, Bill Murray, has withdrawn from
    > > speaking, as has Howard Schmidt with the "people who commit felonies
    > > shouldn't profit from the results of their nefarious deeds, let
    > > alone be sponsored by the security industry" train of thought[1].
    > >
    > > Bill's done the same before with a different organization advancing Kevin
    > > Mitnick in the past. Personally, I think it's fantastic that there are
    > > still people in this world who are willing to take the moral high ground,
    > > and hold it.
    > >
    > > <snip>
    > =====
    > Mike Smith
    > "Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe."
    > H.G. Wells - The Outline of History
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