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Blowing Smoke

How a Microsoft security briefing and belly-dancing fit together is a struggle, even for my imagination but following the Microsoft analyst and press security briefing at RSA in Amsterdam, yesterday even, we were all ‘bussed’, to a middle-eastern restaurant in the heart of the city, complete with waiters dressed as Bedouin and of course, the obligatory belly dancer, a large girl by any standards of the imagination.



Ultimately, I had to be dragged away from a shisha pipe, the only person on my table prepared to indulge and perhaps disappointingly for some of the other journalists around me, it had no local and legal additives, just plain tobacco.

One question I tried to ask yesterday was “Is Microsoft in the business of security or in the security business” but Mike Nash cleverly wriggled out from making any other answer than “Both of these”. Personally, I don’t believe that Microsoft can sit on the fence like this as, in my mind; it is increasingly becoming a security products company, by default if not by intention and NSCGB the Next Generation Computing Base and many more initiatives underline this inexorable drift in strategy under TWC, Trustworthy Computing.

One interesting sound bite from Microsoft’s Mike Nash at the RSA keynote, was the company’s comforting vision of “A place beyond patching”, a revelatory experience, which for many of us will occur, not in this world but ‘In a better place’ regardless of your religion, orthodox Windows or even Anglican Linux.

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