Pointers: Carey’s recommended reads

This week, we are culling some reading suggestions from Robert Carey, chief information officer at the Navy Department. Carey spoke last week at an executive briefing sponsored by the Industry Advisory Council, and these are some items cited in his presentation.


Verizon 2008 Data Breach Investigations Report
Source: Verizon Communications
This report, released June 11, found that nearly nine in 10 corporate data breaches could have been prevented if reasonable security measures had been in place. The report also includes key recommendations to help organizations protect themselves and be proactive.

Verizon spent four years analyzing 500 forensic investigations that involved 230 million records. Among the report’s key findings:


  • 73 percent of breaches resulted from external sources.



  • 18 percent came from insider threats.



  • Insider breaches were much more damaging than those from external sources.



  • Most breaches resulted from a combination of events rather than a single hack or intrusion.



  • 39 percent of breaches were attributed to business partners — and that number grew significantly during the study period.



  • 90 percent of known vulnerabilities had patches available at least six months before the breach.



  • 83 percent of the attacks were not highly difficult and 85 percent were the result of opportunistic attacks.



  • 87 percent were considered avoidable through reasonable controls.



“Rule Number Two: Lessons I Learned in a Combat Hospital”
by Heidi Squier Kraft

One of two books on Carey’s recommended reading list, “Rule Number Two: Lessons I Learned in a Combat Hospital,” is written by Heidi Squier Kraft, who was a Navy clinical psychologist in Iraq. The title of the book comes from the TV show “M*A*S*H”: “There are two rules of war. Rule No. 1 is that young men die. Rule No. 2 is that doctors can’t change rule No. 1.” It was a difficult lesson.

Carey, of course, was on active duty deployed to Iraq, and he said that Kraft’s book captured some of the mind-set of those on duty in the Middle East.


“The Pentagon’s New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-First Century”
By Thomas P.M. Barnett
The other recommended read from Carey is, “The Pentagon’s New Map: War and Peace in the Twenty-First Century,” by Thomas P.M. Barnett, published in 2004.

The book is an extension of an article Barnett wrote for Esquire in March 2003. Esquire’s synopsis of the article and, by extension, the book states:

“Since the end of the Cold War, the United States has been trying to come up with an operating theory of the world — and a military strategy to accompany it. Now there’s a leading contender. It involves identifying the problem parts of the world and aggressively shrinking them. Since Sept. 11, 2001, the author, a professor of warfare analysis, has been advising the Office of the Secretary of Defense and giving this briefing continually at the Pentagon and in the intelligence community.”
The book essentially consists of  that briefing. 

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