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Title: Computer Security: 20 Things Every Employee Should Know (2ed)
Author: Ben Rothke
Publisher: McGraw-Hill
Copyright: 2005
ISBN: 0072262826
Pages: 48
Price: $7.95
Rating: 89%
When I first read the title Computer Security: 20 Things Every Employee Should Know, I thought: "Oh, great...this book will be fifty pages of information jam-packed into a 250-page book." I'm very happy to report that the book does indeed contain fifty pages of solid information, packed into almost exactly that number of printed pages.

The subtitle accurately reflects the book's contents. Among other topics, Rothke describes phishing attacks, the need to secure media such CDs and flash drives, turning on firewalls, and maintaining adequate virus protection through updates. Each section's action items are expressed in general terms, but that's understandable in a book that's clearly meant as a policy document to be supplemented by specific directions from an organization's information technology staff.

Technical professionals might flip through this book and think that the information it contains is obvious, but you have to remember that the vast majority of computer users in the corporate and non-profit worlds have only the vaguest idea of how potentially vulnerable they are. This book will help raise consciousness and enable organizations to demonstrate that they had a policy in place should any liability issues arise.

I like what Rothke and McGraw-Hill have done with Computer Security: 20 Things Every Employee Should Know. The book is clearly meant to be purchased in large quantities and distributed within an organization. In fact, the order form on the last page indicates that if you buy 10,000 or more copies, you only pay $6 per book. Organizations that could stand to lose a lot more than $60,000 if their proprietary information gets out should strongly consider making the investment.

Curtis D. Frye ( is the editor and chief reviewer of Technology and Society Book Reviews.  He is also the author of several training courses and thirteen books, including Microsoft Office Excel 2003 Step By Step and Privacy-Enhanced Business. He was formerly an analyst for The MITRE Corporation in McLean, Virginia.