Cyber is the newest domain of war. A war that constantly happens, with individuals, businesses, and governments fighting relentlessly on the battlefield. As a recent report shows, there is a cyberattack in the US every 39 seconds, and the numbers will soon be applicable to other countries by the speed of internet development. The alarm bell has been rung, and the world’s peace is in danger. Therefore, in celebration of the International Day of Peace, we would like to share our views on the role of cybersecurity in this modern world.
But first, let’s turn back to the root cause for cybersecurity adoption. The cyberattacks.
CYBERATTACKS CAN BE DESTRUCTIVE TO THE WORLD’S PEACE
The crucial impact of cyberattacks can be seen via the lens of three pillars: governments, businesses, and individuals.
1. The impact on nations and governmental institutions
Once an attack happens on a governmental scale, millions of people could be harmed: state-run organizations can be shut down, services can’t be provided to citizens, and national secrets may be exposed. They are all scenarios that the governments would like to avoid at all costs, in order to balance the state of peace.
For instance, nuclear plants can bumble with just a single cyber attack, causing a nuclear disaster with millions of lives lost. In Iran, one of the nuclear facilities was attacked by a computer worm called Stuxnet, which ended up ruining one-fifth of Iran’s nuclear centrifuges. According to investigations, these cyber worms caused centrifuges to heat up and may have caused an explosion costing human lives.
In addition, The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) once warned citizens that Russia is exploiting network infrastructure devices such as routers around the world with an aim to lay the groundwork for future attacks on critical infrastructure such as power stations and energy grids. Although this sounds more like a conspiracy than an official piece of news, there is a real possibility that someone out there might be plotting a malicious plan using large-scale cyberattacks.
All of these examples just show us that cyberattacks are so dangerous that if we fail to stop it from breeding, the world would see its doom days a lot sooner than we ever expect.
2. The impact on businesses
Cyberattacks not only affect governmental organizations and the world’s politics alone but also interfere with normal businesses. There has been an influx of hacks and breaches of name brand companies in recent years, which damages them millions of dollars to settle with the hackers or recover the robbed data.
All these expenses shall deteriorate the financial performance of the companies, and when push comes to shove, employee cutbacks may be put in action to offset such costs. This will not only cause many C-level executives to lose their jobs but also threaten associates and higher sits. That is not to mention the PR crisis that may be associated.
Some huge cases that can be named might be:
- Facebook, the social media giant had over $540 million user records exposed to Amazon’s cloud computing service.
- Equifax, the global credit rating agency that experienced a data breach that affected a staggering $147 million customers. The costs of recovering from the hack were estimated at $439 million.
- First American Corporation had $885 million records exposed in a data breach that included bank account info, social security numbers, wire transactions, and mortgage paperwork.
- The UK National Health Service (NHS), which was temporarily brought to its knees with a relatively rudimentary ransomware attack, resulting in canceled operations and considerable clean-up costs.
- Yahoo, the web giant that suffered a breach affecting every one of its 3 billion customer accounts. Direct costs of the hack ran to around $350 million.
3. The impacts on individuals
Not only do nations and businesses face threats from the actions and intentions of hackers, but individuals face many risks as well. Lying at the core of such risks is identity theft, where hackers steal an individual’s personal information and sell it for profit. This puts the personal safety of an individual and his or his/her family at risk, as the data bought from the thefts can be used for criminal purposes such as kidnapping or bank account robbing. Similar situations have happened numerous times, with millions of dollars lost at the expense of the victim.
In other cases, hackers attack household cameras, smartphones, PC, or any other personal devices to invade others’ privacy. This way, hackers can speak to individuals that live inside the home, make unreasonable demands with which the victims are almost bound to compromise; or they may simply make copies of the victims’ sensitive information for later blackmailing. These kinds of extortion often target high-profile figures such as celebrities or people with high net worth.
For example, operators of REvil ransomware once attack a long list of celebrities including big names like Lady Gaga, Madonna, Nicki Minaj, Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, Jessica Simpson,… and threaten them into paying the ransom. This not only pushes such public figures into a tough spot but also triggers a wave of concern over one’s safety of personal information. The inner peace cannot exist when there is a threat of ourselves being exposed to the wide world.
CYBERSECURITY IS THE WAY OF PEACE
With so many cyber threats and challenges today’s world proposes, cybersecurity becomes a must-have tool to maintain the organization of daily activities and promote global peace. By adapting to cybersecurity and constantly upgrading the firewalls of data and other confidential documents, individuals and businesses will be able to secure the data on an individual, organizational and governmental scale; therefore, prevent the world from entering unrest and chaotic scenarios. There are several detailed actions with which cybersecurity could help the world:
- Protecting data and networks from any unauthorized access.
- Improving business continuity and information security management.
- Providing security consolidation to stakeholders in terms of your information security arrangements.
- Enhancing security controls without compromising company credentials.
- Being preemptive to a potential cyberattack and recovery protocols for a quick revival.
HOW CYBERSECURITY HELPS PROMOTING PEACE ACROSS DOMAINS
The modern architecture of cybersecurity revolves around multiple layers of defense. Therefore, there are obstacles employed in the defense strategy to produce multiple impediments that are enough to deplete attacker resources. That creates multiple domains of cybersecurity, naming:
1. Security Management
This domain is almost overlooked but consists of several tasks, including risk assessment, overseeing security functions to ensure operational compliance, changing management procedures and processes, sensitizing users for awareness.
2. Identity and Access Management
Identity and Access Management entails all processes, systems, and procedures used for managing authentication, assigning identities, and access controls. The identity process assigns the respective system and users with their unique names. Whereas authentication establishes a method for these users to prove their identity.
3. Security Engineering
This domain has two subset domains i.e., computer operations security and network security. Security engineering also encompasses responsibilities around the firewall, router security, intrusion detection and prevention, email filtering, vulnerability scanning, and host-based security tools like DLP, antivirus, and endpoint data loss prevention.
4. Business Continuity
This domain acts as a recovery center for business operations if and when they undergo a catastrophic event like a natural disaster. The domain studies and understands the central avenues that support the organization and curates a procedure that inhabits all these critical functions for an organization to be operable with lesser data loss.
The compliance domain center oversees the security controls, and that they comply with the organizational regulations and legislation. This domain is instrumental in understanding the nuances of these regulations such that appropriate security controls can be taken and audited accordingly.
This domain is often over-analyzed and mostly pertains to its theoretical value. As of its virtual application, it can be as simple as pushing the right buttons. Cryptography is primarily used for protecting the integrity, confidentiality, and authenticity of the information concerned.
7. Physical Security
This domain mostly refers to the workflow associated with physical hardware. Physical Security entails a set of protocol that exists outside the cyberspace but has a direct effect on the cyberspace if breached. Some critical questions one may ask while performing in this domain are: Is the facility fenced? Is the perimeter being patrolled? Are the data centers secure enough to provide authorized access only? Do they have an HVAC system installed?; and so on.
8. Software Development Security
Software Development Security tackles a handful of internally developed issues of a system or an application. This domain imparts security training for developers, performs code analysis, overseeing the process and procedure development, and apprehending newer feature requirements of an application and its consequent effect on its security.
9. Security Operations
This domain is where cybersecurity tools are monitored. Security operations center operates in this particular domain which also works in compliance with the other subsets. Duties of this domain include threat hunting, threat intel, incident response, and forensics.
By carefully tackling each of these domains, cyberattacks could be eliminated, and the security over data as well as the machine’s mechanism can be better protected and secured.
WHERE IS CYBERSECURITY HEADING TO?
It is predicted that the number of active users on the internet will triple by the end of 2022, reaching 6 billion. The number will exponentially rise to reach about 7.5 billion by 2030. This means that there will be a lot more people becoming the target of cyberattacks, hence, suffering from the notation of de-peace. As such, cybersecurity will be at a cusp of being mandated by default, with innovative technologies being introduced to improve the quality of security. AI, for instance, can come to fruition in the future where developers can use AI for locating vulnerabilities and security breaches. AI can potentially be used in UI to send warnings to people whenever they make poor security choices or visit risky websites.
All in all, the world’s peace is sure to be accelerated by cybersecurity technologies, and for that, we can be hopeful about a future where cyber-related ransoms and data crises are totally invalidated.
We are Savvycom, a technology service provider that has helped more than 100 businesses earn outstanding financial acceleration. We help clients with profound expertise, rich experience, and widespread network with global leaders such as Apple, Amazon Web Services, and IBM. If you are wishing to contribute to the world’s peace by accelerating cybersecurity, feel free to contact us for consultation – we are always happy to give you a hand.
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