Availability and Response Time Affect Security

Of course, the justification for speeding up the boot-up time is almost exclusively based on people’s annoyance and frustration with the delays and, to some extent, loss of productivity from not doing something useful during the delay time. Also, if the session being started has an immediacy, such as when you are talking to someone on the phone, discussing a topic with several people at a meeting or presenting to hundreds or thousands gathered for a big event, the loss of productivity and level of frustration can be many times greater, which is all the more reason to justify bypassing sluggish security checks.

Another way to get around the time delay is to leave the computer continuously on and connected to the Internet. Of course this makes the computer susceptible to other forms of attack that rely on a static IP address being always on. The whole botnet scourge used for spam, denial of service, implanting malware and other bad deeds, depends on this “always on and connected” syndrome. It is ironic that an avoidance of lengthy start time, which may itself result from tardy security software, leads to behavior that could well be more dangerous than the initial threat. I’m very much in favor of disconnecting from the Internet when not using it. Thus, efficient low-overhead security software can produce double benefits.

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