It is a connected world that we live in today. A person from one end of the world could connect with a person from the other end of the world within a matter of seconds. People are able to explore information, share knowledge and carry out various transactions with a mere click. This is all thanks to the discovery of internet. Internet is a network of networks. Meaning, internet is a global network that links smaller networks of computers and servers.

Cyberspace by its definition is a symbolic and a figurative space which exists within the scope of internet. According to IT specialists, cyberspace is popular as a medium for social interaction rather than for its technical execution and implementation. Cyberspace allows users to interact, share information, play games, conduct businesses and engage in discussions or social forums. The users in cyberspace are known as cybernauts.

The most important and key thing exchanged in cyberspace is information. And this being the information Age, information has more value than money. So there is more potential that this information can be stolen and manipulated by unauthorized parties. This potential dander gives rise to cyber threats or cyber attacks.

Be informed and beware of cyber threats

A cyber threat is a malicious act that attempts to steal, damage or disrupt any form of data. Most of the times cyber threats can come from unknown parties who access the information through unauthorized means. These parties may include hostile governments, terrorist groups, industrial spies, hackers and hacktivists. Cyber threats can come in the form of computer viruses, data breaches, Denial of Service (DoS) attacks etc.

How to ensure cyber security

Cyber security is the protection of computer systems and networks from theft or damage to their hardware, software or electronic data. Cyber security measures include technical mechanisms such as firewalls, anti-virus software, intrusion detection and prevention systems, encryption and login passwords. Also there are rules and regulations imposed by governments to take action against cyber criminals. Apart from that there are cyber security agencies established to minimize and control cyber attacks.

But with the advancement of technology, just as the security measures improve so does the technology used for cyber attacks. So cyber security has become a challenge. Despite all the technical implementations, rules and regulations for cyber security, cyber criminals always find a way around these to pose attacks. As the saying goes prevention is better than cure, in case of cyber threats also prevention is better than cure. And end user education and awareness play a big role in prevention of cyber threats.

End user education to prevent cyber threats

Human errors and unawareness has become a major weak point exposing them to cyber attacks. So it is important that users understand and comply with basic cyber security principles. And that is the best way to avoid phishing and social engineering attacks as well as other cyber threats.

Users should be mindful of the websites they visit and the apps they install. Must not forget to check if they are from a reliable source. Users must be careful never to click on a link, attachment, or reply with the requested information if they feel something is not quite right. It is also necessary to use trusted network connections or secure the connection using appropriate VPN settings. In addition to those users can change or update their passwords every six months or so.

Apart from all these the right to privacy is recognized as the most important among the set of cyber ethics. So if all the users of cyberspace abide by these cyber ethics, respect everyone’s right to privacy and be mindful of basic cyber security principles, the day we win the battle again cyber threats is not faraway.

Last modified: March 19, 2020

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