Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Hackers Wanted.

The amount of data breaches and cyber attacks we see in the news is ridiculous. And those are just the ones we know about! In March, the Atlanta city government systems were shut down due to a cyber attack. There were also data breaches in healthcare facilities, pharmaceutical companies, Saks fifth Avenue, MyFitnessPal, public schools and universities, etc. What they all have in common: we don't know who did it. It makes one wonder, why didn't I learn how to be a hacker?

Not only that, but more and more companies are revealing that they have capitalized on our information and sold it to other companies. Considering how often people in America, and society overall, freely give out information it should not come as a surprise. But, how are we supposed to measure the limitations?

In Germany, a leading cyberwarfare specialist by the name of Sandro Gaycken said that the government can do little about hacking, being hacked, and that data is stolen from ministries all the time. This week the German federal network admitted that for up to a year they had been infiltrated by a major cyberattack.

America is not alone in these attacks, nor should we assume that. Unfortunately, this is old news. What with the Russian Facebook scandal and poisoning of an ex-spy it is not surprising that many people believe that Russia is behind the breach in Germany as well. Of course, this is all speculation. Much of the news we are receiving now happened many months ago.

It is easy to imitate or copy Russian programs, but especially difficult to actually pinpoint who, what, where, and most importantly why. Shouldn't that be a top priority? Naturally, our President has tweeted about it, which has affected some stock options and lends a weary eye over trading with the United States. The question is, what can and will we actually do about it?

Moving back into Germany, a new hacker-soldier elite is being trained at the Bundeswehr University to serve as a solution. They are building a new digital forensic lab for software development to train IT experts to make it more difficult for hackers to break into the system. The agency plans to employ 13,500 soldiers and 1,500 civilians. The German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen said it best, "There are no outer or inner borders in cyberspace!"

We live in a complex and fast moving society, where everything can and will go wrong. How your company trains and recruits its employees is important, but are we teaching students effectively or reaching out to the right demographic? What can your company do to have its employees prepared to monitor, realize, and prevent information from getting into the wrong hands?

Written by Caitlin Schmit - Strategic Brand Manager

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