A Plea for Simplicity

B. Schneier

Information Security Magazine, November 1999.


Ask any 21 experts to predict the future, and they’re likely to point in 21 different directions. But whatever the future holds—IP everywhere, smart cards everywhere, video everywhere, Internet commerce everywhere, wireless everywhere, agents everywhere, AI everywhere, everything everywhere—the one thing you can be sure of is that it will be complex. For consumers, this is great. For security professionals, this is terrifying. The worst enemy of security is complexity. This has been true since the beginning of computers, and it’s likely to be true for the foreseeable future.

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Sidebar photo of Bruce Schneier by Joe MacInnis.