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The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1918 reviews in the database and more every month.
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Title:
PKI A Wiley Tech Brief
Author:
Tom Austin
ISBN:
0 471 35380 9
Publisher:
Wiley
Pages:
270pp
Price:
£21-50
Reviewer:
Francis Glassborow
Subject:
cryptography
Appeared in:
13-3
I asked to review this book because I had absolutely no idea as to what that TLA (three letter acronym) stood for. It actually stands for 'Public Key Infrastructure'. The book describes itself as 'A Wiley Tech Brief' and that is a very good description. If you are involved in any form of e-commerce, or your business is connected to the Internet in any way for any reason then you should be thinking about aspects of security. Whether it is secure ways of trading or ways by which your employees can exchange data electronically you should be considering the implications. This book is aimed atthe person who needs to consider such things for their company. Well, one of the early features is that there should be such a person in your company.

You may think that security has nothing to do with you. Well let me suggest two ways in which it does. If your employer suffers a substantial financial loss your job may disappear. That has nothing to do with blame, just that companies that are not making a profit cannot pay wages. The second problem is what happens when sensitive material goes astray and you were responsible for it. Just like only being able to set a burglar alarm if your employer has one, you can only detect electronic intrusion (and consequential theft of company data) if your employer provides the appropriate infrastructure.

Even if you do not read this book, a knowledge of PKI should be added to your list of things to acquire.