Christopher Klaus, 26
Internet Security Systems
Computer security is a little like the War on Drugs--you catch as many perpetrators as you can, but you never catch them all. As more and more of the economy goes online, the stakes are rising and anyone offering a better form of Internet security deserves attention. As the founder and chief technology officer of Internet Security Systems (ISS), Christopher Klaus is at the forefront of those peddling peace-of-mind.
Klaus has been noodling with computers for most of his life--at 9, he was programming games on his Commodore 64. Klaus’most ingenious creation is the Internet Scanner,a software package from ISS that uses hundreds of tests to probe a network’s vulnerability, analyze security weaknesses and recommend solutions. Klaus released his first version as shareware while he was an undergraduate at Georgia Tech. Internet Scanner has won several awards as the best Internet security product of the year. The pervasive angst about computer security has been very good to Klaus: Forbes estimates his net worth at $187.5 million.