Bruce Schneier is a renowned American cryptographer and computer security professional. He is also known a prolific author. He is known to be the best person to answer every query about security and has earned a pseudonym as ‘Security Guru’. he did masters in computer science and soon started raising his intellect on network security and published various books. His first best-seller was the ‘Applied Cryptography’ where he explained the science behind secret codes. This book was well-appreciated as it was very informative for both aspiring cryptographers and the masses. His next book ‘Secrets and Lies’ on network and security was termed as a jewel box filled with useful surprises. Apart from books, he also publishes a free monthly newsletter called ‘Crypto-Gram’. He discusses the latest trends in the security world in this newsletter. Every word of wisdom that he expresses through his writings, books, interviews, newsletters and blog has a large readership. Go through the thoughts and quotes by the well-known cryptographer which reflects his immense intellect on technology and computer security. Here are few thoughts and quotations by Bruce Schneier on technology, internet, Google, espionage, dystopia, freedom and observation.
The more we expect technology to protect us from people in the same way it protects us from nature, the more we will sacrifice the very values of our society in futile attempts to achieve this security.
Despite fearful rhetoric to the contrary, terrorism is not a transcendent threat. A terrorist attack cannot possibly destroy our country's way of life; it's only our reaction to that attack that can do that kind of damage.
When a big company lays you off, they often give you a year's salary to 'go pursue a dream.' If you're stupid, you panic and get another job. If you're smart, you take the money and use the time to figure out what you want to do next.
Air travel survived decades of terrorism, including attacks which resulted in the deaths of everyone on the plane. It survived 9/11. It'll survive the next successful attack. The only real worry is that we'll scare ourselves into making air travel so onerous that we won't fly anymore.
When people are scared, they need something done that will make them feel safe, even if it doesn't truly make them safer. Politicians naturally want to do something in response to crisis, even if that something doesn't make any sense. But unfortunately for politicians, the security measures that work are largely invisible.
The mantra of any good security engineer is: 'Security is a not a product, but a process.' It's more than designing strong cryptography into a system; it's designing the entire system such that all security measures, including cryptography, work together.
For if we are observed in all matters, we are constantly under threat of correction, judgment, criticism, even plagiarism of our own uniqueness. We become children, fettered under watchful eyes, constantly fearful that-either now or in the uncertain future-patterns we leave behind will be brought back to implicate us, by whatever authority has now become focused upon our once-private and innocent acts. We lose our individuality, because everything we do is observable and recordable.
Hardware is easy to protect: lock it in a room, chain it to a desk, or buy a spare. Information poses more of a problem. It can exist in more than one place; be transported halfway across the planet in seconds; and be stolen without your knowledge.
History has taught us: never underestimate the amount of money, time, and effort someone will expend to thwart a security system. It's always better to assume the worst. Assume your adversaries are better than they are. Assume science and technology will soon be able to do things they cannot yet. Give yourself a margin for error. Give yourself more security than you need today. When the unexpected happens, you'll be glad you did.
Terrorism isn't a crime against people or property. It's a crime against our minds, using the death of innocents and destruction of property to make us fearful. Terrorists use the media to magnify their actions and further spread fear. And when we react out of fear, when we change our policy to make our country less open, the terrorists succeed -- even if their attacks fail. But when we refuse to be terrorized, when we're indomitable in the face of terror, the terrorists fail -- even if their attacks succeed.
The real targets of terrorism are the rest of us: the billions of us who are not killed but are terrorized because of the killing. The real point of terrorism is not the act itself, but our reaction to the act. And we're doing exactly what the terrorists want [...] Our politicians help the terrorists every time they use fear as a campaign tactic. The press helps every time it writes scare stories about the plot and the threat. And if we're terrified, and we share that fear, we help.
The whole notion of passwords is based on an oxymoron. The idea is to have a random string that is easy to remember. Unfortunately, if it's easy to remember, it's something nonrandom like 'Susan.' And if it's random, like 'r7U2*Qnp,' then it's not easy to remember.