It is evident that the internet world is no longer safe. There are groups of individuals out there who take advantage of any loophole present in the internet and launch attacks. There are different forms of cyber-attacks all aiming at unlawfully stealing of information. Some of the common forms of cyber-attacks that users face in their daily lives include DDos where a large number of users of a given website are denied service by hackers. Another form of attack is the SQL injection where hackers launch applications that lure the users to respond to any form of supplied data. The queries thus lead users into sharing information that hackers can take advantage and steal information from them. Other common forms of cyber-attacks include the threat of botnets, cross-site scripting commonly known as CSS, malware among others. It is thus prudent that users take great precaution when engaging in their online activities as hackers are out there to exploit any form of weakness.
Defeating the hackers
According to the video Defeating the hackers, quantum mechanics serve as the best weapon to protect data from Hackers. The video explains Mat Honans quest to understand the world of Hackers where he notes that modern hacks are different from classical hacks where use of social engineering was the main way to steal information. In this case, hackers link data from different social accounts of the user before taking control of his or her online activities. His quest leads him to Eric Chien who points that the secret to defeating the hackers lie in the prime numbers. By coming up with passwords encrypted in the form of semi-primes (product of two or more prime numbers), it is difficult to hack. The problem with this method lies in the aspect of human beings who share the information hence increasing the vulnerability. Further exploration of the laws of quantum mechanics point that the combination of RSA algorithm and ultra-paranoid computing can be harnessed to form cortical computing where information can be stored in the unconscious part of the human brain where individuals cannot share with others just like muscular activities. Cortical computing is thus the safest way to defeat hackers. The video however ends with the reminder that as strategies to protect information improve, hackers are also increasing their sophistication and are using ways such as removable disks to transfer dangerous programs that have the ability to corrupt computers just as in the manner in which Stuxnet virus was transferred.
Creating better passwords by making up stories
One of the ways in which users protect their information is by use of passwords. It is thus recommended that one makes passwords that are easy to remember but difficult for hackers to access. It thus becomes problematic when one has multiple passwords due to the difficulty that comes with remembering all of them. Computer and cyber security experts thus provide an easier way to harness computer science in creation of easy-to remember passwords. Jeremiah Block, a computer scientist points at the fact that use of computer science to mimic how the brain works can be a better way to come up with passwords that one can remember. In this method, pictures and diagrams that serve as pointers are important tools when recalling passwords. The passwords created tell stories that only the users are familiar on how they relate to the password created. By using this method, one is able to have multiple passwords that are only easy for him to recall but different for others to hack.
Computer networking refers to the ability of computers to share and pass information amongst themselves. They have to be connected either via cable or wireless to allow the information to be exchanged. Without networking, computers lack the ability to share information and this has tremendous impact in almost all fields ranging from medical to the business industry. There are different ways in which computers can be connected to other computers. They include the use of WLAN where cables serve to transmit the information. Other networking options include the use of LAN where computer networking is over a short range. The WAN is the most important computer network where different computers can be connected via the internet. No cables are required. The use of wireless network is however limited by interferences and bandwidth reduction. It is however noteworthy to remember that it is the exploitation of loopholes in the computer network selected that expose users to vulnerability of threats such as loss of data or server attacks by hackers.
By allowing information to be passed across different networks, the internet has made life not only fun and enjoyable but also easier to live. Through harnessing the internets ability to share information, almost every aspect of human life is digitized and automated. This level of interdependence of the internet has resulted to increase in the amount of threats posed by computer programs which are capable of destroying lives and even ruining economies that exist online. It is for this reason that this video points at the role of cyber security in making an attempt to combat the threats posed by programs used by hackers to steal data from the cyber world. Some of these dangerous programs include viruses, Trojans, adware, spywares and other cyber threats. It points at the importance of having firewalls that updates ones operating system as well as preventing the dangerous programs from gaining access to the computer. The video also goes ahead to point that having passwords that are easy to remember by hard for hackers to crack is one way of protecting ones information from the hackers. It is also advisable to safeguard ones data and not sharing it to unauthorized personnel as part of beefing up the cyber-security.
Code wars: America's cyber threat
With the super-power tag, it is widely thought that America as a nation is invincible and well-protected from any form of external threats. It is however evident that there is much to worry about the national security of the country especially with the shift in nature of threat facing the American government. Threats are no longer the classical ones where the nation could protect itself from another countrys growing military growth. It is now evident that the biggest threat to national security is the threat posed by cyber attackers. America as a nation is vulnerable to cyber threats due to its nature as an internet dependent nation. Almost everything from the financial market, water supplies, power grids and even military communication depends on the internet and thus an attack on it would be devastating. It is for this reason that Mellisa Lees video delves into the frontline of the code war in which Pentagon is doing all it can to ensure that national security is not breached. The video points that America as a nation spends almost one trillion dollars each year in the cyber war as part of its national security. The video goes ahead to point that this war is different due to the anonymity of the enemy and the fact that conventional military rules fail to apply. All this is in a bid to protect the national infrastructure from the threats posed by the cyber attackers. It ends with the reminder that the code war is real and much precaution must be taken as some nations such as Iran and Estonia have already faced devastating loss in their infrastructure following cyber-attacks.
All your devices can be hacked
In this Ted-talk video, Avi Rubin a computer and information security expert points at the increase in level of threats posed by hackers and how a cyber-attack can lead to great loss. He points that attacks can happen on almost any device due to the manner in which digitization has penetrated almost every field. He gives an example of how an attack on the pace-makers can lead to great deaths due to the manner in which pacemakers are devised in a manner that allows information to be exchanged between the medic and the patient. It is also pointed that hackers can launch attacks by corrupting programs in self-driven cars and thus leading to major accidents. Scanners and radio communications can be intercepted and compromised by hackers hence leading to proliferation of criminal activities. The video thus shows that almost every device is vulnerable to cyber-attacks and hence measures must be taken to protect individuals from cyber-attacks.
Fighting Viruses, defending the net
Mikko Hypponens Ted-talk points at the fact that despite the advantages that are accrued from using the internet, there are serious problems associated with it. The problems encountered due to the use of internet include problems to do with data security and privacy of information. The video gives examples of how security and privacy of information is compromised especially in the manner in which viruses are spread from one computer to another using removable disk. The danger with the way in which viruses are spread is due to the fact that hackers are becoming more sophisticated and organized than ever before. They use different means such as Trojans and keylogging where information such as banking details can be stolen by hackers. It is also noted in the video that cyber-attacks are becoming even more difficult to handle due to the amount of money made by hackers through online fraudulent activities. It is also difficult to deal with online activities committed by hackers because of the anonymity of the hackers as well as the laxity of the local police in acting. Despite all the difficulty experienced in fighting viruses, Mikko Hypponens dream is to defend the internet by all means. He reminds his audience of the fact that great loss is to be encountered if online crime is allowed to prevail.
Fire, M., Goldschmidt, R., & Elovici, Y. (2014). Online social networks: threats and solutions. IEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials, 16(4), 2019-2036.
This article points out at the increasing use of social networks and the threat that cyber terrorism poses to these users. Cyber-attacks can be launched against social media networks, email services, personal and organizational websites. This article broadly classifies online threats as classic threats and modern threats. Malware, phishing attacks and spammers are identified as the most common classic threats while identity clone attacks, de-anonymization attacks and click jacking are identified as the common modern attacks. Since this weeks topics are concerned with online security and cyber terrorism, this article falls in place especially because of the many Online Social Networks (OSN) users there are today. The best practices that will ensure that online users are protected against threats and vulnerabilities is by use of operator protected networks, installation of anti-breach software by organizations and application of scholarly devised malware detection tools like Audience View interface made for Facebook developed by Lipford and colleagues in 2008.
Preventing Data Breaches
The first and probably the most important thing is to avoid clicking on suspicious links. Common malware like bolts, bolt nets, viruses, Trojans, key loggers, spyware and worms are distributed over the internet by their producers through links redirecting you to say download free software. Another thing that savvy online users should not do is to give in to social engineered attempts to steal their passwords. These attempts, also called phishing, are made to mimic networks that online users are likely to trust like Facebook or Gmail. Savvy online users also evade malware by distinguishing between real and phished company logos. To prevent personal or organizational malware, wise online users avoid using simple passwords that can easily be g...
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