Pages: 132 Published: February 2019 ISBN: 9781680506341 Edition: 1
Simple Practices for Defending Your Systems
by Roman Zabicki
Most security professionals don’t have the words “security” or “hacker”
in their job title. Instead, as a developer or admin you often have to
fit in security alongside your official responsibilities — building
and maintaining computer systems. Implement the basics of good security
now, and you’ll have a solid foundation if you bring in a dedicated
security staff later. Identify the weaknesses in your system, and defend
against the attacks most likely to compromise your organization, without
needing to become a trained security professional.
Computer security is a complex issue. But you don’t have to be an expert
in all the esoteric details to prevent many common attacks. Attackers
are opportunistic and won’t use a complex attack when a simple one will
do. You can get a lot of benefit without too much complexity, by putting
systems and processes in place that ensure you aren’t making the obvious
mistakes. Secure your systems better, with simple (though not always
Plan to patch often to improve your security posture. Identify the most
common software vulnerabilities, so you can avoid them when writing
software. Discover cryptography — how it works, how easy it is to get
wrong, and how to get it right. Configure your Windows computers
securely. Defend your organization against phishing attacks with
training and technical defenses.
Make simple changes to harden your system against attackers.
You don’t need any particular software to follow along with this book.
Examples in the book describe security vulnerabilities and how to look
for them. These examples will be more interesting if you have access to
a code base you’ve worked on. Similarly, some examples describe network
vulnerabilities and how to detect them. These will be more interesting
with access to a network you support.
Roman Zabicki works at Stripe as a member of the application
security team. He has a BA in computer science from the University of
Chicago. He’s a lifelong Chicagoan and lives in Chicago with his wife,
Marnie, and their children.