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Enemies disguised as friends.

The Cold War has ended, but all is not well. According to speakers at the International Security Systems Symposium and Exhibits in October, the United States may have to make some new friends.

Speaking on the opening day of the conference, former CIA Director Richard Helms said, "If the United States is going to remain competitive with Japan and the European countries, it is going to have to do things differently."

Helms said a good computer security system is no guarantee against espionage. All the information contained on a computer is, at some point, in another form. Whether the information is printed out and given to the wrong person or talked about in the wrong place, he explained, companies are more at risk of losing information by mistake than by purposeful attack.

"The ball is in industry's court," he said. American companies must respond to the threat of industrial espionage with or without the help of government.

Richard Mainey, IBM's director of security, agreed: "Business has the ultimate responsibility."

Mainey described how IBM handles the worldwide threat to its security. Every IBM employee must fully understand the basic security program. Information security and awareness is one of the primary responsibilities of all IBM managers.

"We must keep people sensitized," Mainey continued. Management must remain focused, even in times of recession when productivity becomes so important.

Helms warned that the primary threat comes from the governments of competing businesses. Whether those countries are US allies makes little difference.

That threat was clearly illustrated by Stanislav Levchenko, a former KGB major who defected to the United States in 1979. Speaking at the conference, Levchenko predicted that because the Soviet Union is in such poor financial condition, it will begin to exploits its newly developed friendly ties with foreign governments and businesses to commit industrial espionage.

He said that Soviet intelligence is presenting its new face as more cautious, less aggressive, and more foreign-policy oriented. However, Levchenko does not think the intelligence structure will change.

"I just came here to warn.... Soviet intelligence was never in better shape then it is now," he said.
COPYRIGHT 1991 American Society for Industrial Security
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:industrial espionage and computers
Publication:Security Management
Date:Dec 1, 1991
Previous Article:A plateau in software pirates' pillage.
Next Article:Networked for crime.

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