Sunday, 5 October 2008

Rewriting the Code

"Can you take a quick look at this please, Rob?"

The 'Group' of which our company is the shining star (i.e. highest returns) has been trying to put together what they refer to as a 'Code of Connection' such that everyone who attaches to our Global WAN comes under the same set of rules. Sounds like a reasonably simple task you might think, unless of course you had ever had to write one yourself... I, however, did not have to write one, merely cast a critical eye over the work in progress before me, and comment on it.

Half an hour later I emerged from my task, confused and rubbing my eyes. I had a thought which I am positive anyone practicing security today will have experienced - "there's a lot of words there, but I'm not certain that everything's been covered, I have no proof..."

Basically, I had no idea what was required from the Code, because I didn't know what it was trying to be. So, a quick Google search revealed to me what I was looking for, the difference between Policy, Standard and Procedures.

This is when the trouble started. I went back with a handful of notes which I'd put together in PowerPoint and printed off. Having explained the differences, I was asked to pull everything out of the Code of Connection that wasn't Policy, and send it back to the IT Security team.

I then spent 3 days putting things into tables, deleting headlines and putting them back in, writing bits, deleting them again, and generally getting in a mess.

Realising that I needed a better reference, I went back to basics, and pulled out the IT Policy. To my surprise, I noticed that the Policy was actually called "IT Standards", a collection of Standards from across the group, all in one place.

I think I may have just created a monster. I'll let you know how it goes...

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