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US government steps up Trojan horse research

David Bicknell


The US government is to step up its research work into Trojan horse attacks on corporate systems to counter fears of risks created by hasty Y2K remediation work.

According to Richard Clarke, the US government's national co-ordinator for security, infrastructure and counter-terrorism, many companies woke up too late to Y2K, and may have allowed malicious codes to be implanted in their systems.

Speaking at an information security conference in Washington, Clarke said: "A Trojan horse can be as little as two lines of code buried in millions of lines of programming. Even our best people have difficulty in finding a Trojan horse."

The Clinton administration is seeking an extra $1bn for information security research and development projects, and wants to co-ordinate its efforts with the private sector to avoid duplication.

The conference was jointly held with several auditing organisations that US officials want to play a role in promoting information security awareness among their clients.


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