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Love bug virus raises issue of information security

The computer virus that turned 'I love you' into a dangerous message as it paralysed systems across the globe, also highlighted the importance of information security.

The issue has been acknowledged as a top priority by the European Commission, which considers information se...
The computer virus that turned 'I love you' into a dangerous message as it paralysed systems across the globe, also highlighted the importance of information security.

The issue has been acknowledged as a top priority by the European Commission, which considers information security crucial for ensuring and promoting confidence of consumers and investors in e-commerce.

'The love bug is a warning to us all that security must be given top priority if consumer and user confidence is to be maintained as we move into the information age,' said Commissioner for Enterprise and the Information Society, Erkki Liikanen. 'The Commission is determined to give security the urgency it deserves, both in its own computer systems and in the policies it promotes.'

The Commission itself was relatively unaffected by the attack as staff were warned in time to take the necessary precautions. It was noted that much damage was averted by international cooperation and information exchange, which the Commission says should be encouraged. Individual users are reminded to keep their guard up however, as modified versions of the virus continue to be distributed.

Data protection was also identified as a priority at the Lisbon Council summit and forms one of the central themes of the Commission's eEurope initiative.

A number of information security initiatives are in the pipeline, and the Commission will shortly outline the broad thrust of forthcoming recommendations later this month at the G8 high-tech crime convention being held in Paris.
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