Cyber Security may sound like a highly technical term to you. However, if I were to define it simply, it is a technology that protects networks, devices, programs and data from attack, damage or unauthorized access.
Have you received any mail with the subject “Gigafiber- Activation Request Received”? Well, you’re lucky if you aren’t a victim of the Cyber Security attack. There are so many other such spams people receive that lead them to fake websites or software.
The intention of these hackers is to mostly earn money. They do so by stealing bank account details or hacking email and social media accounts. If they gain access to your credit card, of course, it’s a gala time for them. E-mail and social media credentials are used to sell data on the dark web.
So, how do you save yourself from such crimes? Let’s take a look.
What is Cyber Security?
Also known as IT (information technology) security, it is a software that protects data present in programs and devices from hackers. They try accessing, stealing or destroying it.
A hacker can try and misuse your account for illegal activity, steal your bank credentials for money or also erase all your important data. Let’s see how dangerous it can be:
A terrorist could hack into the FBI’s network and erase all his criminal records. Similarly, he could hack your account to steal your money or send signals for a bomb blast.
So, this is the extent to which cybercrime can go to.
Types of Computer Security
Your hard disk and internal memory are not the only places in the computer where you store information. A lot of it is also stored on clouds as well as software. Whether it’s your personal information or something essential for your organization, hackers can get things from anywhere they want.
To protect your information present in different areas from different sources, following are the types of computer or IT security that you can get:
Protecting your computers at a physical level is usually the first step you need to take. Keeping your files, computers and disks secure through guards and doors is the something every big company does. However, this is not really a part of cyber security services but is a merely internal measure limited to preventing internal cybercrimes.
Most machines, whether used for an office or by an individual for pleasure use application security. This involves using software and hardware for preventing various cyber-attacks. All firewalls, anti-virus programs and encryption programs are examples of application security.
You may say that application security is a part of network security. Other things that it involves include using extra logins and changing passwords from time to time. These are security measures taken to protect your internal network from hackers as well as malware attacks.
The “cloud” is a virtual space the internet. So, cloud security means securing the cloud platform you work on. This is done through a software that can secure data on your cloud and even monitor it. With time, cloud security has become so efficient that storing data on a cloud is actually safer than a physical storage device.
IoT (Internet of Things) Security
If you put it simply, the internet of things refers to all the items that are connected to the internet and can exchange data. This includes security systems, smart appliances as well as your Wifi routers. IoT security involves securing all these networks and devices.
The Need of Cyber Security: Threats You Can Get Rid Of
In order to know what a cybersecurity software in your device can do, let’s see what might happen if you don’t have it.
Following are the threats you can prevent if you have cybersecurity software installed on your device:
Malware is a program that erases data from your device on the attack. A virus is common in most devices that can enter your device through spam, software or hardware. Trojan horses, worms and spyware are other such dangerous files.
That’s a dangerous program which not just gains access to your confidential information, but also blocks access to your own account! When you’ll try signing in, it might ask you to pay a handsome amount. Now you know how the hacker’s earning.
Social engineering & Phishing
They’re similar practices of sending spams or fake emails and tricking you into providing confidential information. They’ll steal your passwords and probably enjoy spending your hard-earned money.
Domain Name System or DNS, a protocol that converts URLs into IP addresses. DNS tunneling involves a misuse of the protocol to transfer malware and ransomware programs. So, it is important that your website is protected and secure from such a possibility. A website URL beginning with “https” is secure while “Http” is not secure.
This is the most dangerous activity performed by a hacker. That involves, gaining complete access over your system, network or software. It is like entering your house, gaining access to the keys to your safe and stealing everything it has. This process allows them to decode your crypto-currencies like bitcoin.
Now, if you trust yourself to secure your own device and software from such illegal practices, there is tremendous scope for you.
The IT sector is growing and so is the need for its security. Hackers earn millions of dollars through loopholes in apps and software. If technology is your forte, you can earn more than a hacker by preventing or catching him.
Cyber Threat Intelligence
There are multiple threats your network and data are vulnerable to every single moment. The cyber threat intelligence refers to the information regarding these threats which your IT securer receives and utilizes to mitigate them. This information may be obtained from malware analysis, the dark web, technical intelligence, social media and some open sources.
Here’s how it has helped in the evolution and development of cyber or IT security:
- It has improved the efficiency of the IT security team in identifying new threats.
- Cyber-threats have become predictive in nature. Thus, providing preventive security measures has become possible.
- It has led to coordination between various organizations to share threats and mitigate them together.
- As a result of the above, the risk posed by cybercriminals has now reduced.
- When data breaches go down and security increases, the cost of computer security goes down automatically.
Cyber Security Degrees
If you want to enter the IT sector in the future, there are many colleges offering specialization in IT security. You have bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees, diplomas, and certificates in this field.
Following are the key aspects you cover in most of the courses:
- Introduction to computers: Hardware and software
- Network: Technology, protocols, and security
- Computer forensics
- Statistics: Data analysis and implementation
- Cloud computing
- Security for e-commerce, apps, websites, and software
- Artificial intelligence and machine learning
- Audit & assessment
Cyber Security Companies
There are several companies that look after cyber and network security in some way or the other. The most common ones are those who provide application security to individuals and organizations.
You are mostly familiar with a few companies I have listed below that provide anti-virus and firewall security to your system:
- McAfee: Their antivirus software, cloud protection services and threat intelligence network made them one of the leading cyber security companies in the world.
- Kaspersky: You must be familiar with this name the most when it comes to an antivirus software, though it provides a lot more than that.
- Cisco: This name is popular for providing its certifications for cybersecurity as well as multiple solutions like malware protection, email protection, cloud security and threat response.
- Trend Micro: Based in Japan, this company is the leading cloud security provider in the world providing user protection and threat defence.
- Microsoft (Windows Defender): All Windows 10 users have received the privilege of getting a free antivirus as well as firewall which is also very efficient.
- Eset Cyber Security Pro: They have created an award-winning antivirus software that is used across more than 200 countries today.
- Deloitte Cyber Security: This is also one of the world’s leading computer security advisories providing application protection, identity & access management and information privacy & protection.
There are other organizations too that work on a much higher level. One such organization is the National Cyber Security Centre. It is based in the United Kingdom and advices companies in the public and private sectors on how to avoid various cyber threats.
Cyber Security Jobs & Salaries
Working for IT security companies not only pays you well but also provides an amazing learning experience.
An IT security analyst can earn up to 1.1 million annually to analyze security threats, configure tools and minimize problems. Consultants earn up to 1.7 million for providing protection against all kinds of threats to a network or system. Once a manager, you get up to 3 million for looking after the overall implementation of security.
You undoubtedly need cybersecurity for your system, whether you use it to watch films on Netflix or execute a job. Most of you already have antivirus and firewalls on your computer. If not, won’t you get it right away?