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How Is Your Philosophy of Security Engineering?

Why Mindless Incremental Engineering is dangerous to Security

By Roy D. Follendore III

Copyright (c) 2001 RDFollendoreIII

All Rights Reserved


When you take the time to step back and think about it, it is self evident that all philosophy takes place in the mind and represents the rational rules of perspective.  It is not "out there", it is always "in here".  It what defines the universe and we use it as a tool to manage the Universe.  As humans we can adapt the philosophy that seems to best be associated with who and what we are. 

If Science and Engineering are part of our Universe then it is necessary to have the means to consistently relate their practices within a coherent association with who and what we are as members of our community.  If we do not choose to conscientiously do this then we will have chosen to allow the chaos of the Universe to drive our goals, our aspirations and our ambitions.  By the rules of the natural universe, it should be apparent to all that the moment we give up the ideals of reasoned and arguable order, we are instantly defeated by inherent process of entropy. We must be willing to state and argue our philosophical perspective if we are to entertain notions of the existence of acceptable verification and validity.

For those of you who are bound by logic, consider the importance of managing logic in a rational manner.

  • Philosophy is the ultimate Science of Sciences and the Engineering of Engineers.
  • Philosophy is critical to Science just as it is critical to the Science of Engineering Security.  

Security Engineering means more than driving a stake into the ground and making a stand on a policy argument. Security is not something that can be or should be self supporting. It is an interdependent consideration of reason. Without a comprehensive philosophy it becomes impossible to determine where to best to place that stake and it it also becomes impossible thereafter to decide where to move next.  Without a valid Philosophy of Security Engineering, there can be no valid scientific perspective from which to compare and further develop technology.  Without a  Philosophy of Security Engineering we are simply mindless masons laying viral bricks, not the architects of our future.  Without the notion of a valid philosophy we can not know what we know.

As a global society we have to know and understand the philosophical boundaries of security or we can not know exploration of thought from malicious intent or intent from practice.  Without philosophical boundaries there is no difference between truth and lies, privacy and justification, secrecy and lost opportunities.

If we do not establish a reasonable and justifiable Security Engineering as a Scientific Philosophy then we shall be allowing technology to rule our motives and our goals.   The power of technology to save or to destroy the destiny of man is upon us.  If we do not control this great venture of communication to which we as a race have launched ourselves then we will be at the mercy of all of the possibilities that come from incremental events, however small.  

Establishing and maintaining an environment where a comprehensive philosophy of security can flourish is obviously a serious long-term intellectual undertaking but it is one that will lead to wonderful discoveries, opportunities and advantages. It provides a tremendous payoff.

This section is about my journey in discovering a new Philosophy for Security Engineering.  It is about changing the philosophy of Security Engineering from a mindless secrecy creation activity into a mindful knowledge productive process.  It is about creating an understanding among people that secure communication is appropriate internally within organizations and can sometimes be even more appropriate between adversaries.





Copyright (c) 2001-2007 RDFollendoreIII All Rights Reserved