Wikipedia and Information Security

Interesting discussion on Slashdot about the online phenomena Wikipedia. For those who don't know yet, Wikipedia is an online encyclopedia that allows anyone, even you...the Astute Reader...to edit their content.

Many students rely heavily on Wikipedia to pad their research papers until they reach the minimum number of pages. The question becomes: should an encyclopedia (Wikipedia, Britannica, etc.) be used as a cited source in a research paper?

I weigh in with my thoughts on the matter in Slashdot's comments section.

So...what does this have to do with information security? Well...despite the fact that Wikipedia may not be reliable enough to serve as a major source in a graded paper, it is still a remarkable and generally reliable resource for research on any subject you can image.

Personally, I often turn to it to get a general overview on many topics, including infosec. Once I have a baseline on a topic, it is often easy to research certain topics in greater depth from primary sources...

Knowledge is one of our greatest defenses against insecurity - familiarize yourself with the sources of data that are available to you - Wikipedia being one of them. See also my article about vulnerabilities and sources of info on them.


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