Monday, October 23, 2006

Microsoft and security: an impossible marriage?

During the last month's VI World Conference of Computer Law, Lilian Edwards gave a very insightful talk about the dangers possed by cyberthreats, which was followed by a discussion about what to do in that respect. Most participants favored some sort of regulation, altough there was no consensus about what type of it. The argument of imposing either civil or criminal liability into the software producers hit the argument of the complexity of their product and the impossibility of guaranteeing a fault-free software. But, for how long? It could be argued that at least there should be some sort of regulation impossing obligations to vertify that the proper care and skills are used. The obligation to provide the service with proper care and skills already exists in the English Supply of Goods and Services Act 1982 but it seems that there is a further need to certify it.
This week Microsoft released its new Internet Explorer version 7, with the motto "you wanted it easier and more secure" and today a flaw, a serious flaw, was already discovered. It is important to note that Microsoft threw a party in the Hack in the Box meeting in Malaysia to get help from the world's hackers to sort out its security problems but, according to The Tech Age "[a]n Internet Explorer 7 flaw, found just hours after the browser's launch, could result in sensitive data such as your internet banking details falling into the hands of criminals".
The topic of Internet personal security is now under the consideration of the UK's House of Lords and it seems that some legislative action might be proposed...will that be enough?

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