In the wake of recent revelations regarding the iPhone hacking campaign that plagued unsuspecting iOS users for at least two years before Google researchers discovered it, the buzz words on everyone’s lips are ‘online security’. If you conduct your business and/or personal affairs online, you can’t bury your head in the sand and hope for the best – you need to be proactive in the war against cybercrime.
According to Internet World Stats, there are currently over 4,000,000,000 internet users. The number of websites in existence exceeds 1.5 billion and Nasdaq estimates that by 2040 over 90% of purchases will be made online via eCommerce. Over 3 billion people engage with social media. Millions of people are interacting with each other through online gaming and online dating. People are exchanging ideas, exchanging personal information and making financial transactions across various online platforms.
Online security systems are the only things standing in the way of cybercriminals taking this information and using it in any number of unscrupulous ways. The question is, is the technology good enough to do the job and keep internet users safe online?
In the early days of the internet, online hackers were considered amateurs – teenagers working from their bedrooms causing havoc by unleashing various viruses and breaking into secure systems in order to disrupt services.
As the online landscape has developed and expanded, these so-called amateurs have evolved into networks of organised criminals targeting individuals and businesses. Identity theft, information theft, money laundering and fraud are rampant throughout the World Wide Web. Security software companies are fighting an on-going battle to adapt to each new cyber threat – the good news is that for the most part, they’re winning.
Software developers are now leveraging new technology and adapting it in order to create security systems that leave hackers out in the cold. AI technology, which has had its fair share of negativity and naysayers, is proving to be a valuable tool in the line of defence.
The combination of deep learning and user-behaviour analytics allows a device’s software to recognise when a user is behaving in an abnormal manner and act accordingly. By allowing the computer system to make a decision based on user behaviour, companies could save a fortune in both time and money.
Online security companies have also turned their attention to hardware. Hardware authentication has come to the fore due to the ever-increasing demand for ‘smart’ devices and the emergence of the ‘Internet of Things’. A network password, while necessary, is no longer enough to protect against attack. Using hardware authentication adds a defensive layer, meaning that should a hacker manage to break a network password they will not be able to take over an entire system.
SSL Encryption has long been the mainstay of online protection and it is thanks to SSL that people are able to safely input credit card numbers and personal data. Ecommerce and online gaming, for example, have benefited hugely from data encryption. Every new online casino should have SSL and if it doesn’t, then users should visit https://new-casino.ca/ to find one that does – it’s that simple and it’s that important.
The Cloud has also seen vast improvements in security. In fact, the Cloud incorporates virtual versions of all the latest security measures – think virtual firewalls, behaviour analytics and state-of-the-art encryption for data protection. The Cloud could become the safest virtual place on the internet for both private and public entities.
Protection Begins at Home
Giant strides have been taken to improve online security, and the efforts of online security companies to keep people safe are determined and on-going. However, it must be said that those with criminal persuasion are always just a few steps behind.
It is up to the individual user to ensure that they implement the necessary precautions to keep themselves safe online. Not only should passwords be hard to crack, but they should also be changed regularly; financial transactions should only be made on websites with SSL encryption; people should share as little personal information online as possible.