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trial to an information age in which information products are extensively bought and sold, information assets provide leverage in undertaking business activities, and communications assume ever-greater significance in the lives of ordinary citizens. At the same time, national economies are increasingly interlinked across national borders, with the result that international dimensions of public policy are important.

• Trends in information technology suggest an ever-increasing panoply of technologies and technology-enabled services characterized by high degrees of heterogeneity, enormous computing power, and large data storage and transmission capabilities.

• Given the transition to a global information society and trends in information technology, the future of individuals and businesses alike is likely to be one in which information of all types plays a central role. Electronic commerce in particular is likely to become a fundamental underpinning of the information future.

• Government has special needs for information security that arise from its role in society, including the protection of classified information and its responsibility for ensuring the integrity of information assets on which the entire nation depends.

Collectively, these trends suggest that future needs for information security will be large. Threats to information security will emerge from a variety of different sources, and they will affect the confidentiality and integrity of data and the reliable authentication of users; these threats do and will affect businesses, government, and private individuals.

Chapter 2 describes how cryptography may help to address all of these problems.



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