Today, you will be learning about the following topics in Cyber Security as well as its scope as a career. The blog will cover the types of cyber threats, some of the popular tools used, and more.
Any individual or organization should be aware of their valuable assets that are present in their system or network and identify the threats that risk those assets being lost or damaged should they get into the wrong hands.
What is Cyber Security? Learn here in detail:
What is Cyber Security?
Cyber Security involves the practice of implementing multiple layers of security and protection against digital attacks across computers, devices, systems, and networks. Usually, organizations have a system and a framework in place for how they tackle attempted or successful cyberattacks. A good framework can help detect and identify threats, protect networks and systems, and recover in case any attack was successful.
Importance of Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity is even more significant now as most things that we enjoy today are in the form of connected devices and systems. With IoT revolutionizing the way the world operates, it has become imperative that Cybersecurity be implemented in all systems that are prone to threats and attacks to prevent extortion attempts, identity theft, loss of valuable data, misuse of sensitive information, etc.
Critical infrastructures such as hospitals, financial service companies, power plants, etc. possess sensitive data not only pertaining to their consumers but also to themselves. This calls for serious consideration for Cyber Security implementation to keep our society functioning without disruptions.
Cyber Threat Researchers, in this regard, uncover new vulnerabilities, strengthen open-source tools, and educate people on the importance of Cybersecurity.
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Types of Cyber Threats
Cyber threats are malicious activities that seek to disrupt the digital life in general by stealing data and misusing it. These activities may include the unauthorized accessing, changing, or destroying of sensitive information, money extortion, or process interruptions.
Let’s discuss the different types of cyber threats that exist:
Phishing is a fraudulent attempt to send emails claiming to be from reputable sources to obtain sensitive data such as credit card numbers, usernames, passwords, etc. Phishing is the most common type of cyberattack. It can be prevented if the public is educated on it and if the latest technology solutions screen such malicious emails.
Ransomware is a malicious software designed as a means to extort money. Attackers block access to files or systems until a demanded ransom is paid by the victim. However, paying the ransom does not necessarily guarantee file recovery or system restoration, which can again be a huge setback.
Malware is a software that is designed to attain unauthorized access to systems or cause damage. These types of malicious software include viruses, worms, ransomware, and spyware. Clicking on malicious links or attachments installs the software that activates the malware. Once activated, it can:
- Stealthily acquire data by transmitting it from the hard drive (spyware)
- Block users from accessing key network components (ransomware)
- Make systems inoperable by disrupting individual components
- Install malicious software that can cause harmful effects
Social engineering is a tactic to manipulate people into giving up confidential information, including bank information, passwords, or access to their computer to covertly install malicious software that can steal such information from the system.
Social engineering may also work in conjunction with other cyber threats to make it more likely for users to click on malicious links, sources, or malware download links.
Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs)
APT happens when someone unauthorized gains access to a system or network and stays there undetected for a long time. These threats generally do not harm the network or machines and are more focused on data theft. APTs are known to go unnoticed and undetected by traditional security systems, but they are notorious to be the reason for a number of large, costly data breaches.
SQL injection involves inserting a malicious code into a server that uses SQL and allows the attacker to intervene with queries. This web security vulnerability can be as simple as entering the code into an unprotected website search box. The infection causes the server to release sensitive information.
Man in the Middle (MITM)
MITM attacks, self-evidently, occur when hackers alter a two-party transaction and steal data. Any unsecured public Wi-Fi network is prone to such kinds of attacks. The attackers who resort to such tactics insert themselves between the visitor and the network and, with the help of malware, carry out malicious activities.
Denial of Service (DoS)
A Denial of Service (DoS) is intended to shut down a machine or network so that it cannot respond to any requests and to make it inaccessible for users. This type of attack is carried out by flooding the target with traffic and triggering a crash.
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Scale of Cyber Security Threats
Both cyber-defense tactics and Cyber Security threats are evolving in an attempt to outdo one another. As a result, there is a growth of malicious software and threats in new forms that constantly need protection against. Any individual or organization that uses any form of network is equally vulnerable to such attacks and is a potential target.
There are three different types of Cyber Security threats that one needs to be aware of:
- Cybercrime: Committed by one or more individuals who target systems for financial gain or to cause havoc
- Cyberterrorism: Designed to break into systems and instill fear
- Cyberattacks: Often carried out for political reasons and aimed at collecting and/or distributing sensitive data
Types of Cyber Security
Let’s now break down the different types of Cyber Security.
Database and Infrastructure Security
Considering the fact that everything in a network includes physical equipment and databases, securing these devices is vital. Database and infrastructure security is for these cyber-physical systems, which may include even water purification systems and electricity grids.
Network security covers numerous technologies, devices, and processes. It involves a designed set of rules and configurations implemented for the protection of the confidentiality, integrity, and accessibility of networks and data.
Network security is intended to protect internal networks from attackers by securing the infrastructure. The implementation of new, strong passwords and two-factor authentication (2FA) are perfect examples of network security.
Application security uses software and hardware for the protection and security against threats that may crop up during the development stage of an application. For example, firewalls, antivirus programs, encryption, etc. are kinds of application security.
Information security or InfoSec helps in preventing unauthorized access, disruption, disclosure, misuse, modification, inspection, destruction, recording, or any other kind of malintent involving sensitive data or information.
Information security is typically built around three objectives—CIA (confidentiality, integrity, and availability)—and aims to protect both physical and digital information in any form.
Cloud security refers to the technologies, services, controls, and policies that aim to provide protection for cloud data, infrastructure, and applications from cyber threats and attacks. It helps to do away with any risks that are associated with on-premises attacks by constantly protecting and monitoring the data in the cloud.
Data Loss Prevention
Data loss prevention focuses on coming up with processes and policies designed to prevent and handle data loss, as well as recovery policies as a countermeasure for successful Cyber Security breaches. Data loss prevention involves having network permissions and policies in place for data storage.
End-user education is the process of educating and training users about the best security practices and safety measures (e.g., not to click on unknown links, not to download suspicious attachments received in emails, etc.) to avoid letting in malware or other malicious software.
A good end-user security training program can help enhance the security in an organization when done properly. The training should be in a language and at a technical level that can be understood and followed by everyone.
Identity Management and Access Control
Identity management and access control can be crucial components in a security architecture, and it basically involves the management of access to enterprise resources. This is a good measure that can ensure the security of systems and data. This type of security helps in the verification of users’ identities before granting them access to the systems and sharing information with them.
Mobile security, also known as wireless security, is the protection that is in place for smartphones, laptops, tablets, and other portable devices and the networks they are connected to from the threats and risks that are involved in wireless computing.
Disaster Recovery or Business Continuity Planning
Disaster recovery is the process of resuming business after a disruptive event. Business continuity planning, on the other hand, ensures that enterprises can keep running the business and capitalize not only after small disruptions but also in the event of bigger disasters. Because of their many common considerations, the two terms are often mentioned under the acronym BC/DR.
All BC/DR plans are mapped out to help employees communicate and go about doing their jobs in the event of an attack. The details of a BC/DR plan may vary depending on the size, scope, and workings of the company. Also, it is crucial to understand that physical, HR, and IT plans cannot be developed independently of each other in this case.
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Challenges of Cyber Security
The biggest challenge faced by companies in Cyber Security is the implementation of effective Cybersecurity measures due to the ever-evolving nature of risks. It is as if there are more devices than people in this world today, and attackers are becoming more and more creative.
Organizations and the government’s security endeavors taken for only the most crucial system components have proved to be insufficient with more advanced and evolved threats on the loose. Thus, there is a necessity for organizations to adopt more proactive and adaptive approaches to Cyber Security.
Unlike the traditional approach, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recommends a shift toward real-time assessments and continuous monitoring, thus making security more data-oriented.
Cyber Safety Tips and Best Practices
Cyber defense technology is not the only component that makes up a strong Cyber Security system. It also relies heavily on people making smart choices. The following practices will help increase your cyber safety knowledge:
- Provide your personal information only on trusted sites
- If a site URL has https://, then it is a secure site. Avoid entering sensitive information if the URL has http://
- One of the most common ways that malware and viruses are introduced into a system is through emails that resemble to be from trusted sources, so do not open attachments or click on links in emails that are from unknown sources
- Most times, outdated devices are targeted, so it is of utmost importance to keep them updated
- Backing up files regularly will save your important files in the event of Cyber Security attacks
Above all, staying informed and being cautious with your online activities are the best you can do to protect your networks and devices.
Cyber Security Tools
Cyber Security tools consist of various apps and solutions that are used to mitigate risks and safeguard sensitive information from cyber threats. Examples of some of the widely used tools are:
- Web security
- Entersoft Insights
Cyber Security Jobs and Salaries
Let’s move on to learn about the career prospects that the field of Cybersecurity provides to certified professionals.
Cyber Security jobs:
- There are over 66,000 Cyber Security job openings recorded on LinkedIn currently in the United States.
- Over 29,465 Cyber Security jobs are available in India on TimesJobs.
Cyber Security salary:
- In India, a Cyber Security professional earns an average salary of ₹714,007 p.a.
- According to Glassdoor, the average annual income of a Cyber Security expert is US$99,834 in the United States.
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Sound Cyber Security measures when implemented in conjunction with an educated and informed user base make up the best defense against cyber threats. One can always start small, focusing on the most valuable assets, and eventually scale the efforts as the Cyber Security program matures. The only way to battle malicious threats and attacks is to let the security programs evolve so that they can fight the advancing and newest threats head-on or, at the best, prevent these types of attacks from being a success in the first place. Learn Cyber Security today!
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