Daily Archives: 2011-11-09

Oral evidence to the malware inquiry

The House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee is currently holding an inquiry into malware.

I submitted written evidence in September and today I was one of three experts giving oral evidence to the MPs. The session was televised and so conceivably it may turn up on the TV in some strange timeslot — but if you’re interested then there’s a web version for viewing at your convenience. Shortly there will be a written transcript as well.

The Committee’s original set of questions included one about whether malware infection might usefully be treated as a public health issue — of particular interest to me because I have a published paper which considers the role that Governments might play in countering malware for the public good!

In the event, this wasn’t asked about at all. The questions were much more basic, covering the security of hardware and software, the role of the police (and at one point, bizarrely, considering the merits of the Amstrad PCW; a product I was jointly involved in designing and building, some 25 years ago).

In fact it was all rather more about dealing with crime than dealing with malware — which is fine (and obviously closely connected) but it wasn’t the topic on which everyone submitted evidence. This may mean that the Committee has a shortage of material if their report aims to address the questions that they raised today.