THE MAGAZINE

Cybersecurity Operations Handbook.

By Ben Rothke, CISSP

Cybersecurity Operations Handbook. By William Hancock and John Rittinghouse; published by Elsevier Digital Press, 800/545-2522 (phone), www.elsevier.com (Web); 1,256 pages; $94.95. 

George Bernard Shaw, Mark Twain, and perhaps others have been credited with saying, "I didn't have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead." Perhaps the authors of this book were under the same time constraints, as their tome checks in at a massive 1,256 pages. For all its bulk and valuable reference information, however, it glaringly lacks operations-type material.

The first 19 chapters (and 700 pages) discuss technologies such as firewalls and VPNs. While these are well-written, there is nothing here that hasn't been published before; all of the information is easily accessible via the Internet for free.

The final several hundred pages duplicate freely available government information. One is left wondering why the authors felt the need, for example, to include all 257 pages of the Federal Search and Seizure Manual here. Anyone can find it on the U.S. Department of Justice's Web site and search it electronically.

At $95, this book is a pricey substitute for information easily obtainable from the Web. While the information the book does contain is very good, it hardly justifies the price tag.


Reviewer: Ben Rothke, CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional), is a New York City-based senior security consultant with ThruPoint, Inc. He is a member of ASIS International.

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