Security expert turns political

Wednesday, 3 September 2003, 1:30 PM EST

What would inspire a well-known computer security consultant to suddenly shift gears and focus on dissecting politics and popular culture instead of the latest viral plague?

It's the realization that politicians, pundits and personal apathy can do more damage to truly critical systems than any computer worm, according to computer security consultant Richard Forno, author of two books on network-intrusion detection and computer forensics.

Forno's new book, Weapons of Mass Delusion: America's Real National Emergency, scrutinizes the "dangerous delusions of modern American culture" instead of the latest silicon security threat.

In his wide-ranging critique of subjects including religion, cell-phone ring tones, homeland defense and Hollywood, Forno warns that "the real danger facing America is what we're allowing ourselves to become."

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