Web Site Defacement Alerts Go Out

Several security vendors are issuing alerts that a hacker contest with the goal of defacing 6,000 Web sites will begin on Sunday.

The scoring rules for the contest put the lowest value, one point, on attacking Windows-based sites and the highest value, five points, on defacing HP-UX and MacOS sites. Defacements of Unix, Linux and BSD sites are worth two points and attacks on IBM AIX are worth three points.

Security vendor ISS, which warned its customers about the contest, is keeping its security alert level slightly elevated due to the hacker contest. ISS is at two on a scale where four is highest on its proprietary Internet Threat Level meter.

Security vendors warn that the most common hacker attacks involve well-known, and sometimes months-old, security vulnerabilities that vendors have already provided patches for. The best defense against events like the defacement contest is to keep systems up to date with patches.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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