Staying safe and sound in a world of cyber crime

6th January 2016
Posted By : Joe Bush
Staying safe and sound in a world of cyber crime

When it comes to safety, technological advancements play a major role in some of the newest home security and monitoring systems. However, one area where the importance of safety is growing is in cyberspace. Nicolette Emmino explains.

We live in an interconnected world. Cyberspace can, and does, affect nearly every aspect of our daily, and very digital lives - from broadband networks, to wireless signals, to grids that power our nations.

Now more than ever, nations are recognising the importance of securing this intangible space.

Who’s at risk?

It’s hard to say whether anyone is safe from cybercrime. Some recent cyber attacks include an attack on TalkTalk that resulted in customers’ data being stolen and a data breach at a United Arab Emirates bank in which a hacker ransomed a large sum of money.

And that’s not all. In lieu of the holiday season, research firm Bay Dynamics released a cyber risk report disclosing holes in even retail business’ information security. The report, titled ‘The Pre-Holiday Retail Risk Report’, revealed that a good number of retailers assign the same log-in credentials to their employers.

Even schools aren’t safe. UK universities recently sustained a Distributed Denial of Service cyber attack to academic services network, Jane, responsible for running and domains.

IoT and security

Let’s not forget about the Internet of Things (IoT) - where our homes and lives are now connected in every way possible, and these IoT devices create new opportunities for hacking.

Boston-based cyber security firm, Rapid7, recently released the report, ‘Hacking IoT: A Case Study on Baby Monitor Exposures and Vulnerabilities’, which revealed security problems and design flaws in nine major brand baby monitors which could result in hackers accessing the video stream.

Law makers on demand

Since there have been reports that many networks that enable essential services, businesses and the internet to function are affected by an increasing number of security incidents, negotiators of the European Parliament, the Council and the Commission have agreed on the first EU wide legislation on cyber security.

The lawmakers believe that the incidents, which can occur as a result of technical failures, unintentional mistakes, natural disasters or malicious attacks, could disrupt the supply of essential services.

The deal will require internet companies like Google, Amazon and eBay to report cyber incidents to authorities. The legislation, known as the Network and Information Security Directive, states that these companies will be penalised for failure to report such incidents.

What can we do?

Companies are capitalising on the need for security, launching solutions and products that provide fast protection from new threats. Companies like IBM offer the strategies and technology necessary to help agencies protect web applications from threats.

Raytheon and Websense joined forces to develop a brand new corporation dedicated to protecting commercial companies from threats that come with evolving their infrastructure with cloud computing, mobility and the IoT to stay competitive.

“The market for advanced cyber solutions that protect and defend global industry and infrastructure is rapidly growing due to the sophisticated threats posed by well funded, nation state adversaries and criminal networks. As the business enterprise evolves to meet the networked demands of today’s mobile and cloud economy, these threats will grow in size and scale,” said Thomas A. Kennedy, Raytheon Company Chairman and CEO, in a statement.

The joint venture combines the TRITON security platform with SureView software products to protect commercial business.

Other companies, like Symantec, offer threat protection, cyber security services, information protection and website security, while start-ups like Shape Security, Bitglass and CloudLock have been popping up over the past few years to tackle the newest security threats.

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