'we should all be uncomfortable with the extent to which luck..'

Jon Allen Boone tex at delamancha.org
Wed Jul 25 16:45:01 UTC 2001

k claffy <kc at ipn.caida.org> writes:

>    almost makes me wonder if some white hat might (should?) have been
>  behind CodeRed as some 'vaccination' attempt.


     First, I thought you were going by kc :-)

     Second, your analysis is flawed in that it makes the fundamental
  mistake that the ends justify the means.  If you do not accept that
  notion, then no one who was behind CodeRed can be construed as a
  "white hat."  Consider: 

    1)  A doctor of epidemiology notices that there is a potential for a
         large segment of the population to contract a particular
         disease - say the bubonic plague - which is on the rise again.

           Said doctor contacts the U.S. CDC in Atlanta, as well as
         raising awareness through normal media channels (television,
         magazines, newspapers, radio, slashdot, etc.).

           Said doctor, also having the wealth of Croesus - or being
         associated with the WHO, sets up free vaccination sites all
         across the world.   Millions of people receive the vaccination
         and deaths (and much untold suffering) is avoided.

            No doubt, this doctor is a white hat.

    2)  Another doctor of epidemiology notices the same situation, but
         takes another tactic.  This doctor runs out into the street and
         begins to randomly inject the vaccine into the arms of
         passersby - taking great care to ensure that clean needles are
         used and the strictest handling procedures are followed - we
         wouldn't want to spread hepititus or AIDs...

           This doctor is, undoubtedly, a black hat.  The reason for
         this is that the doctor failed to follow one of the fundamental
         rules of civilized society - informed consent of the
         individuals receiving the vaccine.

           No doubt the intentions of the two doctors are the same.  No
         doubt that they "mean well".  No doubt one is a serious threat
         to the continuing health and welfare of those nearby.

    Now, if there was a tiger team that offered, as part of its
  services, to try and infect your system with CodeRed, then they would
  be operating in the role of white hats.

Jon Allen Boone
tex at delamancha.org

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