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UNCG ISM 201 - Essentials of Cyber Security: Term Paper

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Essentials of Cyber Security: Term PaperNathaniel ZinnermanISM 201-0123 November 2020Nathaniel ZinnermanISM 201-0123 November 2020Essentials of Cyber SecurityIn 2019, 15.1 billion records were exposed (Risk Based Security). Cybersecurity is an essential topic that millions of people should have information on because it pertains to everyone’s everyday lives in this modern internet world. Security breaches are attacks on personal data by an individual, group, or organization. In most cases, it is because of a hacker or third-party system that corrupts files and data.Cybersecurity involves different techniques that help in securing various digital components, networks, data, and computer systems from unauthorized digital access. There are multiple ways to implement cybersecurity depending on the type of network that you are connected to. The most common forms of cyber-attacks would be things like malware malfunction, which are things like downloading files that have viruses attached. From 2009-2018malware infections have grown exponentially (see picture below). The next one would be a phishing attack, which is basically like fraudulent emails that appear to be coming from a legitimate source. This can cause a malware attack and implement viruses in the organizations’ systems. This form of cybersecurity can cause an information breach where credit card information and log-in credentials can be stolen, a common form of a security breach for most businesses and organizations like Facebook in April of this year (Forbes). Another form of attackis the man-in-the-middle attack. This is basically exactly what it sounds like. A hacker can get in between an organization’s server and its website’s server.Malware Infection Growth Rate from 2009-2018 (PurpleSec)With the worldwide known company, Facebook, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has seen it all when it comes to a cybersecurity attack. Their most popular attack happened two years ago in 2018 where it made worldwide news, with millions affected. This news even made it to the US Congress where Zuckerberg apologized for failing to protect user data. They even had to work with the FBI to determine what had happened. It began with a research firm called Cambridge Analytica, in which they had sent out a form to users that looked a bit like a quiz with personalitytraits to agree and disagree with. This had actually paid users to take the quiz, and the catch was that they had to log in with Facebook.These results, which included their birthdays, photos, likes, and friends, were sent to Cambridge Analytica. This quiz was supposed to let individuals in on their specific personality outlook, and many were interested since it took everything into account. The breach’s foundationwas built on the fact that as it took the individual’s data on their Facebook, it could also take theirfriends’ data as well. In as little as over a month, 87,000,000 individuals’ information was out. CA stated that they did this to personalize political messaging, which helped the Trump campaign in 2016 (New York Times). In 2019, Facebook had the biggest security breach of one billion users with unsecured servers like Oxydata (NordVPN), and in 2020, it is said that 270 million users’ information had been used and sold on the dark web for just $570 (Forbes). The consequences for Facebook were that it disobeyed the trust between Facebook and its users. Many people had claimed to delete their accounts due to worry of leakage of personal information and financial exposure. The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act is something that inhibits consequences for hackers and third-party systems that steal personal data. Even using personal data using a subpoena (fake) account on Facebook leads to a lawful consequence. In the future, there will be more security data breaches, because technology comes with hacking. Especially big organizations like Adobe and Google. Most will be like Facebook’s data breach, and there are ways to prevent this. For an individual, it is important to not trust any third-party host or use an easy password. There are things that many Apple products have that generatecoded passwords that one could use for creating new accounts on websites. Another thing is to change their passwords often. This may make it harder for a breach to affect the individual.Another form of preventing security breaches is two-step authorization. Companies like Walmart and many colleges do this type of verification, where online businesses' accounts implement extra steps to log in. This prevents one from just needing your username andpassword to log in. What this looks like is commonly a text code verification or asking things like a secret question. It is important that the organization uses this two-step verification to have things that only the company would know or the individuals under the company to have access to. Also, making sure that the company’s software is updated regularly is the epitome of keeping security protected. For example, if the organization is using an old version of Windows or another software, this might make information vulnerable and make the organization the next to be data breaches. This is important for organizations with high-level data, and this can be fixed by programming to update automatically. With this type of prevention, it is important to have a ransomware blocker. This is to safeguard and back up data, like saving files and documents online and offline as well. This is most seen as downloading data on hard drives or anexternal or cloud-based service like iCloud. Most importantly, Organizations should inform. This means to inform their employees ondata breaches and how to prevent them in all measures. This might mean training sessions where the CEO or team under the organization makes up an educated system to inform employees on their part of keeping the organization safe. This makes sure that employees know that some information is sensitive and confidential and what steps need to be taken to protect that data. Thismakes sure no personal files are being shared, and the risk of viruses and problems like malware malfunction from happening. In addition, it is important to keep employee computers at restriction, such as not being able to use company computers for personal reasons, but only for business.Works CitedMartinez, Carlos. “Must-Know Cybersecurity Statistics & Facts.” NordVPN, 9 Oct. 2020,


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