David Papp Blog

9 Questions to Help You Understand Cybersecurity

Ever since the Internet has been around, cybersecurity has been a byproduct of it. Both of them share similar traits in that they continue to expand in their own unique ways. But at the same time, it can be difficult for the average user to fully wrap their head around both of them as well.

In order to make things easier for you, this article is aimed to answer some of the most common questions that revolve around cybersecurity. Through this, you’ll have a better grasp of this aspect of the internet.

What is cybersecurity?

It’s the protection of all Internet-connected systems. From the data itself to the hardware and software, cybersecurity is designed to protect them from threats or unauthorized access to data or systems.

Why is this important?

As the Internet has continued to develop, there have been an increasing number of threats in the forms of hackers and viruses. These particular problems can lead to leaking of sensitive or confidential information. Because this information is vital for many reasons, cybersecurity has become important in preventing various attacks – or at least mitigating the damage.

What elements of cybersecurity are there?

Cybersecurity encompasses a variety of sections. As such, it’s encouraged that companies don’t just hire one cybersecurity specialist, but rather several to cover all the appropriate elements.

These elements are:

  • Application security
  • Access security
  • Data security
  • Network security
  • Wireless security
  • Disaster recovery
  • Operational security
  • Cloud security
  • Critical infrastructure security
  • Physical security
  • End-user education

What benefits are there for having cybersecurity?

There are several benefits for even implementing cybersecurity practices of your own, such as:

  • Protection against many cyberattacks and data breach attempts
  • Protection for data and networks
  • Preventing unauthorized access
  • Improved recovery time after a breach
  • Protection for end users and endpoint devices
  • Complying with regulations
  • For businesses, it can mean survival.
  • A higher confidence in a company’s reputation and trust when it comes to developers, partners, customers, employees, and stakeholders.

What are the types of threats?

Keeping up with security trends and new technologies is challenging as there are always new threats coming out or previous threats changing. Threats don’t just come from viruses. Threats can include:

  • Malware – Essentially a virus or worm. It also includes spyware and trojans. These all harm a computer user directly.
  • Ransomware – Currently a more common threat which also takes the form of malware but goes a step further. It locks many files from a user via encryption and demands payment for the files to be decrypted and usually involves limited time to do so.
  • Social engineering – Relying on human interaction, this tactic tricks people into breaking security procedures in order for the attacker to gain sensitive information.
  • Phishing – Another form of social engineering, it involves fraudulent emails or text messages that resemble those from reputable or known sources. These attacks occur at random and typically gain users credit card or login information for a site, which can also be used at other sites.
  • Spear phishing – Phishing but it targets a specific user, organization, or business.
  • Insider threats – Security breaches or losses caused by people inside a business. Many stats indicate most fraud originates from within.
  • Distributed denial-of-service attacks – Attacks that target multiple systems with excessive amount of traffic or requests. The idea is to overwhelm that system until it crashes it, preventing any legitimate traffic from getting to it. Common done to websites or business Internet connections.
  • Advanced persistent threats – Attacks where they infiltrate a system and remain undetected for long periods of time. These attacks usually aim to steal data.
  • Man-in-the-middle attacks – As the name suggests, this attack allows the attack to intercept a data between two parties and begins relaying messages between the two of them, making the parties believe they are communicating with one another.

What are the biggest challenges cybersecurity faces today?

The biggest Is the continuous challenge that hackers put up however other challenges like data loss, maintaining privacy, risk management and the changing landscape of cybersecurity itself are notable others.

How is automation used in cybersecurity?

Like many industries today, automation has enhanced aspects of the industry as well. Automation is responsible for improving three aspects of cybersecurity:

  • Threat detection. Thanks to AI, it can analyze data faster and pick up on known threats and even predict threats too.
  • Threat response. AI has also allowed us to create and automatically enact security protections quickly.
  • Human augmentation. AI has also helped in handling a lot of the repetitive tasks that were part of cybersecurity jobs. This has been a huge relief as one issue security pros face is being overloaded with alerts before AI stepped in.

What tools do cybersecurity vendors offer?

Vendors of cybersecurity offer a variety of security products bundled into their services. Common tools and systems they offer are:

  • Identity and access management
  • Firewalls
  • Endpoint protection
  • Antimalware
  • Intrusion prevention/detection systems
  • Data loss prevention
  • Endpoint detection and response
  • Security information and event management
  • Encryption
  • Vulnerability scanners
  • Internal and external penetration testing
  • Virtual private networks
  • Cloud workload protection platform
  • Cloud access security broker

What kind of career opportunities are there?

There are several career avenues for cybersecurity. Here is a general overview of the most common:

  • Chief information security officer (CISO) – They implement the security programs and oversee the IT security department operations.
  • Chief security officer (CSO) – Executive responsible for the overall cybersecurity of a company.
  • Security engineers – The workers who protect company assets from threats through quality control and IT infrastructure.
  • Security architects – The ones who plan, analyze, design, test, maintain, and support the infrastructure.
  • Security analysts – Plan and measure controls, protect digital files, and conduct internal and external security audits.
  • Penetration testers – Also called ethical hackers, these test the security systems, networks and applications security measures. They look out for malicious issues and vulnerabilities that could be exploited.
  • Threat hunters – Do threat analysis and aim to uncover vulnerabilities and attacks in order to mitigate those problems from compromising a business.