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Cyber Security

Today cyber security is not just a trend, it’s an urgent need, it does not cause any doubts. Every day, each of us uses information technologies. From social networks, posting information about their personal data on the Internet, to using ATMs, bank accounts, etc.

In this regard, the question arises whether the problem is resolved by national law and how to protect themselves from cyber criminals.

Cyber security refers to a set of methods used to protect the integrity of networks, programs and data from attacks, damage or unauthorized access.

According to Forbes, the global cyber security market is expected to reach 170 billion by 2020. This rapid growth of the market is fueled by a variety of technological trends, including an influx of initiatives with constantly evolving security requirements, such as “Bring your own device” (BYOD) and Internet of things (IoT); the rapid implementation of cloud applications and workloads that extend security needs beyond the traditional data center; and stringent data protection requirements, such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulations and the National Security Institute for Cyber security of the National Security Institute (NIST).

Why cyber security is important?

The main functionality of cyber security includes the protection of information and systems from large cyber threats. These cyber threats take various forms (for example, application attacks, malicious programs, extortion, phishing, kits for use). Unfortunately, cyber opponents have learned to launch automatic and complex attacks using this tactic – at lower and lower costs. As a result, to keep up with cyber security strategy and operations can be a challenge, especially in the government and corporate networks, where their most destructive form of cyber threats often target the sensitive political, military or infrastructure assets of the nation or its people. Some of the common threats are set out below in more detail.

Cyber terrorism

Cyber terrorism is the destructive use of information technology by terrorist groups to advance their ideological or political agenda. This happens in the form of attacks on networks, computer systems and telecommunications infrastructure.

In the US and many other countries, cyber war was recognized as the fifth area of ​​warfare (after land, sea, air and space). Cyber ​​warfare attacks can invade networks to compromise valuable data, worsen communications, degrade infrastructure services such as transport and medical services, or interrupt trade.

Cyber espionage

Cyber espionage is the practice of using information technology to obtain sensitive information without the permission of its owners or owners. Cyber espionage is most often used to obtain a strategic, economic, political or military advantage and is conducted using hacking and malware technologies.

How to maintain effective cyber security

Historically, organizations and governments have been using the reactive “point product” approach to fighting cyber threats, combining separate security technologies-one on top of the other-to protect their networks and valuable data inside them. This method is not only expensive and complex, but inefficient: news of destructive cyber violations continue to dominate the headlines. In fact, given the prevalence of data violations, the topic of cyber security has moved to the top of the list of priorities for boards of directors who are looking for a much less risky path.

Instead, organizations can consider a built-in automated next-generation security platform that is specifically designed to provide consistent, secure protection – at the endpoint, in the data center, in the network, in public and private clouds, and through SaaS environments. By focusing on prevention, organizations can prevent cyber threats from affecting the network in the first place, and also reduce the overall risk of cyber security to a level that can be easily overcome.

The simplest rules of cyber security

Bank cards are a convenient modern means of payment, with their help citizens each year pay for goods and services very large sums. But fraudsters learned to use technology in the financial sphere. According to preliminary data, only in 2017, they stole more than $ 30 billion from bank cards around the world. Most often, senior citizens become victims of scammers.

The simplest rules of cyber security should be remembered and observed by everyone without exception, because criminals rely on our inattention, credulity, frivolity. Here are some of the most basic safety standards that you should always follow when using a bank card.

Never give your card details (its number, PIN code, code word, etc.) to strangers even if they are represented as employees of a bank or state structures.

You should not give your payment card to anyone, even the waiter in the restaurant, because he can rewrite your card number or take a picture of it and subsequently use it in unlawful actions. Never carry a PIN together with a card, it is better to keep this information in memory, it is also necessary to change the PIN from time to time.

Recently, theft of personal data from ATMs has become common. Criminals install special devices on ATM machines: skimmers and covers. The first is placed on the card-reader of the ATM, the second – on the keyboard. In these devices, special transmitters are built in, which send all the information received to a mobile phone or e-mail. In the arsenal of scammers, there are other devices that record the read information to another card with a magnetic tape.

IT security specialists advise you to cover the figures of the code that you enter into the ATM with the palm of your hand, because criminals nearby can hide a video camera. It is offered to use SMS-informing services and set a limit on the use of money, and also provide the bank with a phone number where they can contact you quickly. If the bank will notice an unusual transaction for you or excessive use of funds, you will be called and asked if you perform the specified actions, if not, the card is blocked, and your funds remain in the account securely. When using remote maintenance, get a reliable antivirus program and do not forget to update it.

What schemes are used by cyber fraudsters?

Phone calls

Citizens can receive calls from scammers, who are presented as employees of banks or government agencies and report the reimbursement for any actions or expenses. To receive the promised compensation, fraudsters usually offer to pay something: income tax, profit tax, bank fee, mandatory insurance, state duty, transfer commission, etc. In addition, criminals demand the provision of passport data and bank details. Obviously, after the transfer of money, there will be no compensation.

Written notifications

A similar scheme of fraud – a fake notice of payments and compensation. A citizen receives by mail a document stating that the court has decided to pay compensation for any purchase or payment for services. In a false notification, the contact person and telephone number are indicated. For greater credibility, scammers warn their victim that if the letter is ignored, the compensation will go to the state. Believing such a letter, gets to the network to scams, which then act according to a scheme similar to the first.

SMS messages

Frauds using SMS messages are also one of the most common schemes in which scams are covered by the names of banks. A person can receive a text message with the following text: “Your bank card has been blocked. Information by phone: 00000000000. *** Bank “(the text may vary slightly, but the meaning is preserved). A short number can be specified as the sender. The cardholder, calling the number indicated in the message, gets into the fake security service of a supposedly commercial bank. He is convicted that the system has failed and suggests either to go to the nearest ATM and carry out the operations that will be indicated to him, or to provide the details of his card in order to be able to unlock it (other options are also possible). If a person complies with the instructions of fraudsters, money will be written off his card.

In order not to become a victim of deception, in no case do not react to reports of fake structures if you are asked to make any payments.

Cyber security of small business

Small companies and business owners, as well as any Internet users, also should not lose their vigilance with regard to cyber threats. Anyone can become a victim of hacker attacks.

The mistake of many newcomers is the absolute certainty that their business is not interesting for cyber criminals. However, it is such a disregard and use by companies of outdated security devices without the use of topical security technologies and techniques often are sufficient arguments for hackers to choose such companies as a victim and launch an attack. In addition, a small organization can be selected as a springboard to attack its partner company using weak links in the supply chain of goods or services.

Rule 1. Do not rely on an antivirus

It’s no secret that traditional antivirus solutions alone can not cope with most of today’s threats. Back in 2014, Norton Antivirus loudly declared: “Antivirus is dead.” Norton acknowledged that the traditional antivirus detected only 45% of all attacks. Even at the level of the standards of 2014 this figure does not look optimistic. Today, according to the most loyal assessments, they detect 20-40% of attacks.

Since its introduction in 1987, antiviruses have used binary signatures (hashes) to identify malicious files. Today, signatures have lost their effectiveness, since modern attacks are constantly changing and evolving, they have learned to bypass detection in this way. Of course, antiviruses also do not stand still – they have the functions of heuristic analysis and detection of threats for which there are no corresponding signatures in the database, but there are similar ones. However, this approach has a very high false positive rate. In addition, after installation, such an antivirus significantly loads the system, taking up extra space on the hard disk and using additional processor powers.

Rule 2. Do not open “the door” to the hackers.

Companies that want to create a truly effective protection system need to take a number of measures. First of all, you need to understand exactly how the attackers can penetrate your network. Most malware enters the system through exploits, programming errors or vulnerabilities. Preventing the use of exploits will help you defend against unknown threats.

First of all it is necessary to teach colleagues and employees never to open attachments and not click on links in letters if they came from a source in which one can not be 100% sure.

Many outwardly safe organizations very often turn out to be conductors of intruders. The best defense is not to create a “door” for the hacker in your system. These rules have been repeated many times, but so far a huge number of hacking is registered because of the human factor. So-called social engineering is one of the most effective tools for cyber criminals, because, as you know, the weakest link in computer systems is a person.

In this case, solutions are needed that analyze the behavior of files and traffic. They should be able to prevent attacks and at the same time have the means of detection for those cases when the attackers did penetrate the system through any loopholes. Such protection is necessary everywhere – on the final and mobile devices, in data centers, in the cloud and even on IoT devices. This is a class of solutions that are called “sandboxes” or threat emulators. They monitor files and programs with suspicious behavior, place them in a sandbox environment, start and watch how they behave in an isolated environment to avoid a negative impact on the network. If everything is in order, and malicious activity is not detected, the file gets into the computer system of the company.

Rule 3. Think about a defense strategy

For businesses of any size, the same rules apply: first you need to determine which data for the owner are the most important, and then choose solutions to protect them and reduce the risk of loss. Until recently, this required disproportionately huge investments in security. Today, start-up companies have the same opportunities as large players for reasonable money.

First, it is worth considering the cloud model. It enables organizations to quickly deploy security systems and manage them by the providers of cloud services, bypassing small pre-investment (or without them) and predictable monthly expenses. In addition, this way you can deploy advanced integrated services: from antivirus and firewalls to web applications and social network management tools. This allows companies to focus on business and development issues, leaving network protection to professionals.

Secondly, comprehensive integrated security capabilities are now available to medium and small businesses, which only large enterprises could use before (working in virtual private networks, preventing intrusions, antispam, application control and URL filtering). Their cost starts from a few hundred dollars. This allows many companies to write advanced security capabilities, even in the most limited IT budget.

The main thing is an integrated approach to security. It is necessary to include the above-mentioned antiviruses, firewalls, and DDoS-prevention systems and anti-botnet solutions.

Rule 4. Pay special attention to mobile devices

Today, any business is increasingly moving towards mobility. Startups often store corporate data on laptops and smartphones or in public cloud storage, which can be accessed from any gadget. And this is the weakest point, from the point of view of information security of business.

The most promising approach to mobile protection is to allocate an isolated container inside the mobile device to work with corporate data and store it.

Thus, with the personal information in the smartphone, the user can do anything, except hacking the device. To solve any operational issues, it is necessary to switch to the protected container and enter an additional pin code. Only after that access to corporate data and resources will open. Through the installed VPN tunnel, the user will be able to access corporate mail, calendar, address book and other applications. Then corporate data will be completely isolated from personal data. Files, mail – all this is securely protected and managed centrally within the framework of corporate security policy.


Unfortunately, cyber crime constantly evolves and keeps pace with technology, which makes it difficult to detect and counteract these illegal actions. It should be remembered that in practice, the lost money is very difficult to recover, because the guilty person in such a situation is not easy to find, the bank is only liable if it is proved that the crime was committed through its fault. Now banks actively cooperate with law enforcement agencies on crime prevention related to interference in computer systems, but the legislation on cyber crime and practice testify to significant gaps in this area.

The task of every citizen for his own safety is to be vigilant and treat his personal data and payment cards with special care and attention.