Cybersecurity Center Article Archive

The Cybersecurity Center at Purdue Global has compiled a list of cyber defense articles. Read on to learn more about current trends and challenges in the cybersecurity industry.

Supply Chain Threats and the Cybersecurity Solution

February 1, 2021

An entire supply chain can be disrupted by a malware or ransomware attack at a weak link. Simple solutions like an incident management plan or having backups can mitigate the damage, though they are often overlooked.

9 Top Jobs in IT That Are Currently Booming With Opportunities

February 1, 2021

IT professionals are seeing a booming market, with jobs expected to increase through 2028. Positions like DevOps engineers, software engineers, and information systems security managers are among the jobs that require advanced understanding and vast experience, but expect growth in years to come.

Top Cyber Attacks of 2020

January 27, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic and related economic uncertainty brought with it new kinds of cyberattacks in 2020, taking advantage of people’s fears or use of online meeting apps. Even the coronavirus response and the U.S. federal government were subject to attacks.

9 Lessons We Learned From Cybersecurity Experts in 2020

January 12, 2021

Hackers are sharing information among themselves that can exploit vulnerabilities small- and medium-sized businesses vulnerable, and it’s up to cybersecurity personnel to similarly coordinate and recognize what they can do to protect their charges.

Six Hot Data Privacy Certifications for 2021

January 4, 2021

Privacy and data protection credentials can be highly useful and demonstrate knowledge to companies searching for trained professionals to help them safeguard valuable customer information.

Right Strategy, Wrong Century

January 1, 2021

Commonplace use of computers has blended national and economic security, and attacks that decades ago would have been tanks and missiles has been replaced by cyberwarfare. National defense is no longer simply the U.S. military, but must also prioritize cyberdefense as we find ourselves in a different kind of arms race.

Cybersecurity Professionals—“In the Arena”

December 30, 2020

Cybersecurity is not just using safeguards to defend our systems; it also requires leadership and accountability from the top of the organizational chain, particularly as corporate cybersecurity groups face staff shortages and limited resources.

Rethinking Our View of System Security

December 27, 2020

Cyberdefense often relies on “cyber-hygiene” activities, but don’t always address security issues with the totality of the system of hardware, firmware, and software. As our systems grow more complex, we must rethink and broaden our understanding of what a system is to better understand how to defend them.

SolarWinds Orion Hack … A Cybersecurity Wake-Up Call

December 22, 2020

The SolarWinds Orion hack seems to be an act of Russian aggression against the United States, but the response has been very quiet. This attack is an opportunity for the United States to decide what acceptable cyber-espionage is versus what is cyber-warfare meant to disrupt peace.

The Adversaries Live in the Cracks

December 18, 2020

Cybercriminals can seem to have the constant advantage because they use systems security engineering—obtaining thorough information about the systems they’re targeting, finding out how components interact and direct information, and exploiting weaknesses in individual components, remaining under the radar for long periods of time. Defenders must use this same mindset from the beginning to successfully prevent attacks.

Cybersecurity Experts Hail New IoT Law

December 14, 2020

The Internet of Things Cybersecurity Improvement Act, signed in the last days of the Trump presidency, codified increased security protection for the vast array of items and household appliances that have become internet-connected in recent years.

From Weaponized AI to Threats Against the Vaccine Rollout, Here Are 6 Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in 2021

December 14, 2020

Among other concerns, health care organizations might be unprepared to face the biggest cybersecurity threats targeting the vaccine rollout and hospital operations, necessitating new attention to shoring up their defenses.

The Mysterious Disappearance of Systems Security Engineering

December 14, 2020

Recent cybersecurity group reports have neglected to include systems security engineering—the concepts and processes that form the foundation for secure systems. Even great security protocols can fail if the systems using them are flawed.

Acronis Predicts 2021 Will Be the “Year of Extortion”

December 12, 2020

The newest Cyberthreats Report from Acronis suggests that in addition to continuing to use ransomware, cybercriminals will recognize extortion as the solid money maker in 2021, targeting managed service providers and remote workers by exfiltrating proprietary data, intellectual property, and more.

Securing Work-From-Home Devices

December 7, 2020

Pandemic lockdown measures created a challenge for organizations that had not planned to accommodate working from home. Even those who already allowed employees to stay home, however, have faced new challenges regarding their cybersecurity and online resources.

The Widening Security Holes in Our ‘Datasphere’

November 24, 2020

Cybercrime makes up an enormous section of the international economy, and represents the greatest transfer of economic wealth in history. The costs are only expected to grow over the next several years.

Artificial Intelligence Could Be Used to Hack Connected Cars, Drones Warn Security Experts

November 20, 2020

Autonomous vehicles and drones could be vulnerable to exploits using emerging technologies such as machine learning and artificial intelligence, which could have an impact in the physical world. A report by the United Nations, Europol, and cybersecurity company Trend Micro highlights the potential cybersecurity dangers.

Turning Smart Vacuums Into Microphones

November 20, 2020

A team of researchers converted a smart vacuum cleaner’s laser-based navigational component into a microphone to record nearby conversations. The attack was complicated and needed several preconditions, making it unlikely though possible to be used in the future.

The Building Blocks of Cybersecurity: A Particular Set of Skills

November 16, 2020

Cybersecurity skills are built on a foundation that can be found in entry-level IT jobs like technical support specialist or help desk technician. These positions can help provide training in endpoint security, data security, and network security, creating room to grow and learn more advanced skills.

5 Cybersecurity Jobs You Could Get With CompTIA Security+

November 9, 2020

Cybersecurity threats are constantly evolving and must be addressed by resilient IT professionals and strong infrastructure. Systems administration and other IT jobs are now so critical to helping identify and mitigate cyberattacks.

The 8 Most Common Cybersecurity Weaknesses to Watch for in Small Businesses

October 29, 2020

Small businesses are disproportionately targeted by hackers, and many business owners are not aware of their weaknesses vulnerabilities. Building good working relationships with business owners to help them recognize their vulnerabilities is key for cybersecurity professionals.

Report: U.S. Cyber Command Behind Trickbot Tricks

October 20, 2020

The Trickbot botnet, a malware network that had infected millions of computers, came under attack from multiple angles in October. A new report stated that the Trickbot disruption was caused by U.S. Cyber Command, and suggested this was to prevent interference during the recent presidential election.

E-commerce and Data Breaching: The Next Cyberthreat

October 20, 2020

With COVID-19 significantly shifting retail, e-commerce is expected to reach $4.5 trillion by 2021. This increased dependency on the Internet highlights companies’ vulnerability to cyberattack and the leak of customer data.

Building the Human Firewall

October 20, 2020

Protecting employees working remotely during COVID-19 requires more than the right technology; workers must be trained to be careful about guarding their data. Negligence through clicking on malicious links or forgetting procedures is a major cause of insider incidents.

What Did COVID-19 Teach Us About Cybersecurity? Plenty, Experts Say

October 14, 2020

The chaos of COVID-19 and rapid change to remote work environments provided opportunities for cyber criminals, using social engineering to acquire corporate information and exploiting vulnerabilities in companies still adjusting to new technological demands.

4 Pieces of a Zero Trust Approach to Cybersecurity

October 8, 2020

The zero trust approach for cybersecurity works from the premise that everything must be verified and nothing should be trusted. This framework creates a new mindset around security and provides a proper context to tackle modern cybersecurity issues.

Cybercriminals Have Shifted Their Attack Strategies. Are You Prepared?

October 2, 2020

Criminals have adjusted their techniques in order to better target employees working from home, requiring security teams to update their protocols against these new forms of attack.

How Security Programs Are Changing After COVID-19: Maximizing Resiliency

September 30, 2020

COVID-19 has changed security priorities, and as such, security teams are refocusing their work and budget accordingly. This pandemic has provided an opportunity to see what our most important objectives really are, and given us new questions to answer.

4 Shifts Taking Place in the IT Framework

September 17, 2020

The frames of the four pillars of IT—infrastructure, development, security, and data—help define the processes and skills that drive digital organizations. These pillars have evolved over the past years, in part because of the pandemic, preparing for the next decade of technology.

How an Epic Series of Tech Errors Hobbled Miami’s Schools

September 16, 2020

The first day of school for Miami-Dade County’s public schools, the fourth-largest district in the nation, saw a cyberattack that crippled their servers and exposed the weaknesses of their virtual program. The event illustrates how school districts must exercise caution in choosing their education software.

5 Ways for Cybersecurity Teams to Work Smarter, Not Harder

September 3, 2020

Cybersecurity professionals can face burnout from the stress of their jobs and lack of resources. Understanding cybersecurity’s role in business strategy and managing complex expectations are among the ways organizations can help take pressure off their IT team.

We Need Better Classification of Threat Intelligence

September 2, 2020

The term “threat intelligence” has broadened from its original usage, largely relating to malware, to refer to an expanding list of threats. This is creating confusion such that customers can be unsure of what their vendors can do.

No, A Massive Cyber-Attack Didn’t Take Down the Internet Yesterday: Here’s What Happened

August 31, 2020

Fears mounted on August 30 that a disruption in many large internet services was the result of a cyber-attack. The reality was more mundane—the cause was an IP outage attributed to Fortune 500 telecommunication company CenturyLink.

The Massive Shift to Cyber Crime

August 31, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has sent many people home, creating new opportunities for cyber criminals, and even if some statistics remain uncertain, it’s still good to remain alert for scams and cybercrime.

Cybersecurity Competitions: Why You Should Participate and How to Get Started

August 21, 2020

Cybersecurity competitions can provide students of all skill levels with practical challenges that can help them hone their abilities. The individual feedback can help participants understand their individual strengths and stand out when pursuing job opportunities.

Even Amidst Pandemic, Security Operations Remains a Realm of Negative Unemployment

August 14, 2020

Open cybersecurity positions are suspected to outnumber the qualified applicants to fill them. Given this, companies must work to attract and retain the best and brightest.

Six Steps to Start Readying for Quantum

August 10, 2020

Though still in development, the processing power of quantum computers presents a potential threat to encryption and authentication techniques. Organizations must take proactive measures to preemptively protect their data and systems from the advanced devices soon to come.

CISM vs. CISSP: Where to Start

August 5, 2020

Pursuing an information security career often means becoming either a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) or Certified Information Security Manager (CISM). Each certification has a particular focus that is essential to understand for you to plan your career path.

The Realities of Ransomware: Five Signs You’re About to Be Attacked

August 4, 2020

Ransomware attacks don’t come out of nowhere; they’re often preceded by anomalies that can appear innocuous but actually indicate prep work by a malicious actor. Learning these indicators can prevent these red flags from turning into future catastrophes.

Zoom Bug Meant Attackers Could Brute Force Their Way Into Password-Protected Meetings

July 30, 2020

Zoom has taken action after a security flaw was found that allowed hackers to quickly break into private, password-protected video calls. The problem centered on meetings’ six-digit numeric passcodes, for which computers would have no problem brute-forcing the correct combination.

8 Cybersecurity Themes to Expect at Black Hat USA 2020

July 23, 2020

Black Hat USA 2020 is still going on virtually during the COVID-19 pandemic, and organizers plan to deliver their traditional content. Topics to receive major attention this year include remote work, the cloud, and the presidential election.

Q&A: How Systemic Racism Weakens Cybersecurity

July 22, 2020

Camille Stewart, Google’s head of security policy for Google Play and Android, is an attorney and national security and foreign policy expert; she recently spoke about how systemic racism undermines security, users, and organizations, and how security professionals can build a more representative workforce.

Is Your Chip Card Secure? Much Depends on Where You Bank

July 20, 2020

Credit and debit cards have been integrating chips to prevent skimming devices from stealing data when users swipe their card. Recent malware attacks on U.S.-based merchants, however, indicate that hackers are discovering workarounds to sidestep these security features.

CyberSeek™ Data Confirms the Ever-Present Need to Expand Cybersecurity Talent Pipeline

July 15, 2020

Cybersecurity professions were in high demand, as U.S. employers advertised more than 500,000 job openings from June 2019 to May 2020. Data compiled by CyberSeek, a cybernetics workforce analytics source, demonstrates the necessity of remote work during the COVID-19 pandemic.

How Attackers Confuse Investigators With Cyber False Flag Attacks

July 7, 2020

The “what” isn’t the only important part of a cyberattack—“who” and “why” are just as necessary to ascertain. False flag attacks can create doubt and confusion for investigators, but understanding hackers’ techniques can help them figure out the truth.

In an Increasingly Complex World, AI Is the Only Way Forward

July 1, 2020

As the technology world expands, artificial intelligence must expand even faster to keep up. The complexity that the future requires will require equally rigorous AI-driven security systems for protection.

UCSF Pays Cybercriminals $1.14 Million to Recover Files After Ransomware Attack

June 29, 2020

In June 2020, the University of California San Francisco partially contained a ransomware attack that affected some servers within the School of Medicine. The UCSF later admitted that it paid about $1.14 million to the perpetrators to recover data that had been compromised during the attack.

Hackers Target Online Stores With Web Skimmer Hidden in Image Metadata

June 26, 2020

An image file was the carrier for a hidden web skimmer used by a cybercriminal group to carry malicious code and steal data from compromised ecommerce websites. Image files have previously been used to hide skimmers, though it is unusual for them to also exfiltrate stolen data.

Using AI in Cyber Security

June 23, 2020

Artificial intelligence is expected to have a large impact in battling cybersecurity threats, strengthening password protections, detecting new cyber-attacks and phishing attempts, and automating security processes.

The Future of Ransomware Is in the Cloud

June 19, 2020

As cloud services have become more important for successful businesses, particularly in light of the coronavirus pandemic, cybercriminals have followed in search of new opportunities, and it’s only a matter of time before ransomware evolves and grows to target cloud data.

Creativity and Diversity Needed to Close the Cybersecurity Skills Gap

June 19, 2020

The Fortinet Survey Report released in early 2020 documents a worldwide gap in cybersecurity skills. The report illustrates the enormous impact of this shortage and gathers thoughts from executives and security personnel.

How to Calculate the Cost of a Cyberattack

June 18, 2020

Even a smaller cyberattack can be devastating for a company, affecting reputation and business opportunities beyond the financial loss. Hidden costs that are not always obvious include inefficiencies, unexpected downtime, and IT failure.

4 Ways to Be More Strategic With IT

June 17, 2020

The pandemic has caused many companies to change over to remote work and alter business operations, a full-time job for IT professionals. This seismic shift has revealed several lessons that companies can learn from this, as well as what can be done to alleviate future concerns.

10 Emerging Technologies Making an Impact in 2020

June 10, 2020

Artificial intelligence, blockchain, and quantum computing are among several technologies expected to have a lot of potential for business impact in the near future.

2020 Emerging Technology Top 10 List

June 3, 2020

A variety of technologies with both short- and long-term potential are positioned to have enormous impact in 2020, including artificial intelligence, serverless computing, and 5G.

Five Best Practices for Managing Your Business through a Crisis or Disaster

May 31, 2020

In an unexpected crisis, IT solution providers need to know where to focus their efforts. Careful handling of customers, employees, and other business concerns can be crucial when encountering both immediate needs and more long-term concerns.

Google Sees Surge in State-Backed Hacking

May 28, 2020

State-backed cyberattacks in April, predominantly hacking and phishing attempts claiming to be the World Health Organization, led Google to send warnings to more than 1,700 user accounts.

How to Learn Tech Skills: 5 Things to Practice at Home

May 20, 2020

IT work doesn’t necessarily mean college courses or formal training; practicing at home can provide you with valuable experience. Setting up a home lab with equipment you already own (or can purchase inexpensively) can help you dip your feet into new technical skills.

Bluetooth Bugs Allow Impersonation Attacks on Legions of Devices

May 19, 2020

Academic researchers have discovered many unpatched security bugs in Bluetooth Classic that enable attackers to spoof paired devices, on everything from phones to laptops to Internet of Things gadgets, allowing hackers to acquire sensitive data.

How to Become a Cybersecurity Pro: A Cheat Sheet

May 16, 2019

If you are interested in pursuing a career in cybersecurity and don't know where to start, here's your go-to guide to salaries, job markets, skills, and common interview questions in the field. As cybercriminals grow more sophisticated and news of major breaches reach headlines nearly daily, cybersecurity professionals are in high demand: There are currently nearly 3 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs worldwide, ISC(2) found.

CISOs Can’t Find the Right People

May 15, 2020

A recent international study of security leaders found that the top barrier to cybersecurity strategy execution is skills shortage, with many respondents saying they struggle to source cybersecurity talent. Other major difficulties included budget, board level buy-in, and technology.

A Guide to Pandemic Scams, and What Not to Fall For

May 13, 2020

The uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic has created many opportunities for hackers and fraudsters. Vulnerabilities include stimulus checks, unemployment benefits, and personal tech devices.

A National Security Research Agenda for Cybersecurity and Artificial Intelligence—Center for Security and Emerging Technology Issue Brief

May 1, 2020

Machine learning can be easy to overlook as a matter of national security, but an artificial intelligence research agenda should consider its different components and possibilities, in conjunction with already-specified technical questions about cybersecurity and computer vulnerabilities.

The Art of Non-Verbal Communication in a Video Conferencing World

April 27, 2020

Much of our communication comes in non-verbal forms such as gestures and body language. Although it can be tricky as video conferencing becomes more popular, becoming familiar and fluent in all forms of communication can improve business interactions.

Hackers Hijack Routers to Spread Malware Via Coronavirus Apps

March 26, 2020

Cybercriminals are redirecting routers to lure victims to attacker-controlled sites promoting fake coronavirus information apps that use the Oski malware to steal information. The number of victims has grown in recent weeks, demonstrating hackers’ creativity in leveraging the coronavirus pandemic.

AI, IoT, Blockchain, and Drones: The Many Use Cases of Emerging Tech

March 17, 2020

At the virtual CompTIA Communities and Councils Forum, held March 17, four experts from CompTIA’s Industry Advisory Councils discussed emerging technology use cases during the session, "How Emerging Technologies are Delivering Business Outcomes." James Stanger, chief technology officer at CompTIA, moderated the expert panel that included Lloyd Danzig, chairman and founder, ICED(AI); Deborah Kestin-Schildkraut, IBM blockchain and global alliances ecosystem marketing leader, IBM; Ted Parisot, co-founder, Helios Visons; and Jill Klein, IoT practice lead, Sirius Computer Solutions.

Cybercriminals Raking in $1.5 Trillion Every Year

March 12, 2019

Research from Atlas VPN found that criminals' net proceeds outpace the revenue made by tech giants each year. Cybercriminals are now making more than billion-dollar corporations according to a new study from Atlas VPN. Researchers from the company found that cyberattacks are helping criminals in total to make more than $1.5 trillion in revenue each year, which is the three times the $514 billion Walmart makes annually.

Focus on Data Drives Changes for Computer Networking

January 29, 2020

In a business environment dominated by discussions on emerging technology, it can be easy to forget that IT systems have many different components. It can also be easy to forget that the components outside of the spotlight are actually the ones that support the shiny new solutions. Infrastructure such as servers, cybersecurity and first-line IT support continue to be critical areas for any business trying to accelerate their technology strategy.

Is Your Business Ready for IoT, AI, and 5G?

January 28, 2020

Change is a way of life for solution providers. Or should be. Something new is always on the horizon, and the horizon keeps getting closer. These days change looms in the form of three emerging technologies—internet of things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and 5G connectivity.

Fake Amazon Representatives Involved in England’s Phone Scam

January 27, 2020

Scammers recently cheated more than 200 people in England by posing as Amazon representatives over the phone and offering them a variety of free services. Victims were convinced to download harmful software onto their computers and post their bank account information.

What Is Smishing, and How Do You Protect Yourself?

January 24, 2020

Beware of scam text messages the same way you would for phishing emails. “Smishing” messages hope to trick you into clicking on a link and sharing sensitive information or downloading potentially harmful software.

Fake Smart Factory Honeypot Highlights New Attack Threats

January 24, 2020

A fake website designed to lure cybercriminals (also known as a honeypot) observed several threats to industrial control systems over its several months of operation. The fake website included all the online workings of a factory, complete with website, and made intentional security mistakes to mimic a business with limited IT staff.

Privacy Takes a Hit, as Storage Bucket Leaks Cannabis Dispensary POS Data

January 23, 2020

Point-of-sale information from several cannabis dispensaries was discovered to have leaked from an exposed Amazon Web Services storage bucket. Scanned government and employee photo IDs and dispensary visitor and patient signatures were among the exposed content.

Getting Into Cybersecurity: Why It’s Great to Start at the Help Desk

January 22, 2020

A common misconception is that cybersecurity is an entry-level job. While that can be true to a certain extent, when it comes to working on a first-level support team, landing a cybersecurity job comes down to how mature the company’s processes and procedures are.

The Merging of IT and OT and Utilizing Digital Twin Technology

January 22, 2020

In an interview, consultant Ryan Morris posits that conversations about the Internet of Things must also incorporate operational technology (OT), such as how building infrastructure and machinery can be integrated with information technology (IT) to explore new market opportunities.

South Carolina Water Supplier Targeted in “International Cyberattack

January 22, 2020

Greenville Water, a water supplier to about a half-million residents in South Carolina, suffered what it called “an international cyberattack” in early 2020. The attack knocked out online and pay-by-phone systems, but did not affect water delivery.

Phishing Campaign Leads to UPS Store Data Breach

January 22, 2020

The UPS Store disclosed in early 2020 that several store locations’ email accounts were accessed by an unauthorized party using a phishing scheme. No evidence of misuse of information has been found yet, and the UPS Store claimed that only a “small percentage” of stores were affected.

From AI to Workforce: 10 Initiatives We're Excited About in 2020

January 7, 2020

CompTIA has a lot coming down the pipe in the business of technology for 2020, including new advisory councils discussing goals and emerging technologies, a broad workforce community, and international expansion.

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