Forewarned is forearmed. Businesses that depend on the Internet should consider the denial-of-service attacks in early February as a warning. An audit of computer security and legal procedures can help prevent future attacks — or at least reduce the disruption or loss they may cause. If the worst transpires, companies should have a game plan in place, not only to get vital systems up and running again, but also to obtain insurance coverage for any potential liability or loss.

As these denial-of-service attacks show, New Economy businesses are not immune from catastrophe. While technology has spurred huge advances in learning and created huge fortunes, it also allows mischief-makers to cloak their actions and their very identities in ways once only imagined.

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