Back from an evening out you open your front door to discover that your house has been broken into, many valuables are stolen. You take out your phone and dial the police.
To prevent this startling scenario, most people protect their homes with deadbolt locks, alarms, angry German Shepherds, and perhaps cameras. What most people don't understand is that all of those things do precious little to secure their computers and their information on the Internet. Most people have likely heard the word "antivirus" and have vague idea about its purpose. Some may also be aware of the term 'firewall' but have little understanding as to how it operates. Beyond keeping their 'computers up to date', the majority of people really don't understand what to do to safeguard themselves from cyber thieves. What is perhaps even worse, there is nobody to turn to for help when bad things, delivered through the Internet, happen. You can register your case with authorities, but in reality it is very difficult for them to do anything meaningful after the fact. A classic example of this is the 'ransomware' attack (http://g3t.ca/xuFWTQ), where the culprit encrypts data stored on a computer and for a payment provides the decryption key.
This type of issue equally applies to individuals and organizations alike. Nobody is immune.
There was a meeting in the White House last week. President Obama invited executives from hi-tech companies (http://g3t.ca/hpLHL7) and asked them how the government could improve in combatting cybercrime. The President wants closer collaboration between government and industry, where better data sharing can avert potential threats while creating a safer place for its netizens. The problem is that the tech industry is highly suspicious of government efforts to share information, since the same government accessed companies data without permission. This lack of trust was blatantly apparent as some of the big names in technology completely refused to take part in the session. A notable exception was Apple's CEO Tom Cook. In his speech (http://g3t.ca/tH4IO4), he underlined the right for privacy and security, and the responsibility to protect it.
It is easy for the hi-tech industry to point a finger at the government, but the same companies are warehousing mountains of our personal data with very little oversight and transparency. How many times have we heard in the past that despite their best efforts, our personal information was stolen, lost or misused.
Both, the government and industry must to work together to give us enough reasons to trust them. Until then, there is no vaccine and we are on our own.
Trending this week ...
This week brought us some interesting, note-worthy articles and news:
- The Apple radio is coming. How do we know? Apple hired DJ from BBC --> http://g3t.ca/7o5Ope
- WARNING!! This link leads to an article about 10 million published passwords. Trying to download them, might get you in jail --> http://g3t.ca/c4QDAK
- Is Intellectual Ventures patent troll or protector of inventors or proxy tool in the wars between big companies? It always elicits strong emotions. IV won a court case against Symantec --> http://g3t.ca/HIJiSx
- Everything is wireless these days, except the damn charging cable. Samsung is going to build wireless charger into their upcoming device --> http://g3t.ca/PkBTm6
- Twitter growth is slowing. The number of new accounts is getting smaller. The good news (for Twitter) is that the revenue is growing, which means that its current customers will be bombarded with more advertising --> http://g3t.ca/7BmuoC
- Everything has to be smart these days. From phones to watch to fridge. The next is the shipping container. Real time reporting on location, status, cargo --> http://g3t.ca/CQcVuc
- Another heated discussion among scientists about contacting other civilization. Should we contact them or not and if yes, what should we broadcast?. It is a kind of mood point now, considering the fact that radio and TV are spewing our secrets since last century. How many sleepless nights aliens endured by watching Dynasty and Debbie does Dallas --> http://g3t.ca/2kpozB
- Zynga, the maker of FarmVille and CityVille, is keep losing money and still searching for their next big hit --> http://g3t.ca/aNkQrH
- Do you want to know how to generate $1.5 million per month by mining Bitcoins? You need lots of hardware. These guys figured that out --> http://g3t.ca/Bh2EFR
- It has been one year since Satya Nadella took over Microsoft from Steve Ballmer. Did Microsoft change direction or is it still Steve's legacy? --> http://g3t.ca/nXDtAf
- Check out even more trending topics here --> http://g3t.ca/GQ6V10