Back from vacation

Well, I’m back from a nice trip to visit family in beatiful Scottsdale, Arizona.  I lived in Scottsdale for about 5 years prior to moving to the Seattle area.  The Valley of the Sun is about the nicest place on earth this time of year, with high temperatures in the low 70s and lows that…

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Are Fingerprints a Good Authentication Factor?

My previous post refered to a new keyboard that Microsoft is now selling that has a fingerprint reader.  The software and hardware in this package combine to allow fingerprint-based authentication to replace passwords for various systems.  Apparently, the software stores encrypted copies of your password, and decrypts and enters them when require after the right…

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Bill Gates and Strong Authentication

Bill Gates is talking about strong authentication, and people are (grudgingly) agreeing with him.  If Microsoft really starts to push biometrics (several new Microsoft hardware products have been announced employing fingerprint technology) and/or smart cards, the industry might start moving this direction more quickly.  I can tell you as a person responsible for security on…

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“National Treasure” and Bowling

I saw “National Treasure” with one of my kids this weekend.  I love movies that have conspiracies, secret societies, etc. such as this.  If the conspiracies involve the Knights Templar or the Freemasons (and don’t most of them?!), even better.  I strongly recommend that you see this movie, it’s fun, has a lot of history, and…

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2 Week Recap

Today is the end of my second week at Microsoft.  I thought I’d take a moment to recap some of my impressions. Interesting things I’ve done so far: Experienced Microsoft NEO (New Employee Orientation), which they say is like “drinking from a firehose”. Had lunch with Robert Scoble, Microsoft Geek Blogger (http://scoble.weblogs.com) and generally interesting…

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True Information Security?

I was chatting with my boss the other day, and he mentioned how experts were saying that security has moved to the host.  He was referring to the fact that in the past, most security was provided at the network perimeter, using firewalls originally, then moving to intrusion detection and prevention systems, VPNs, and so…

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Technical Snafu! Please Repost Comments!!!

I was wondering if anyone was reading my posts, because I hadn’t received any comments in well over a week.  I was actually thinking of writing a post entitled “Blogging To Myself”, since no one seemed to be reading or responding to what I was posting… Well, it finally dawned on me what the problem was. …

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Maintaining your security skills

I spent a year and a half leading a large web-based identity management and single sign-on project for a Seattle-based bank.  It was a really fun project, and the project was very successful, but it was only marginally a security project.  Obviously there was a security component to the project, but IdM and SSO were…

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My new Microsoft TV cable box

Well, yesterday was the first day that Comcast was making the new Microsoft TV-based DVR available to customers, so of course I rushed over there to pick one up.  So, how do I like it, you ask?  I’d say my initial impression is very favorable.  Pros: You can flip through the channels much faster than…

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How to get started in online social networking

I’ve had some people get in touch with me about wanting to get started with social networking sites, and wanting to link to me.  Some people will link to anyone that asks, and taht is certainly one way to work things.  I would rather link only to people I know pretty well.  This increases the…

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