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Friday 18 August 2017
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Cyber Security in the Age of Smart Home Devices

Technology is a great thing to have in our lives. It makes jobs easier and keeps us connected. With the advent of smart devices, everything is interconnected like never before. The Internet of Things, which includes devices like refrigerators, thermostats, DVRs and webcams, is susceptible to attack. With companies getting into smart technology without any background in security it makes a ripe field for hackers.

Cyber security is the protection of networks, programs, computers and data from attack, damage, theft, disruption, misdirection or unauthorized access. This requires coordinated efforts throughout an information system. The threat to cyber systems is increasing as cybercrime becomes more complex and our technologies become more connected.

Conveniences

The conveniences of these new smart devices are hard to argue with. You can lock your door or shut off the lights with a smartphone app. There is no more getting ten minutes from home just to turn around because you cannot remember if you turned off the coffee pot. Despite these advantages, these devices sometimes pit privacy against convenience.

Risk

The risks with the Internet of Things are sometimes great. It is convenient to unlock your door from a distance; but less than convenient if an intruder can too. Hackers are already on the scene. Compromising baby monitors and webcams. Furthermore, there is the issue of privacy. Many internet capable devices are actively collecting user data. What is done with this data, how it is stored and who is collecting it is not always clear. Unless security is greatly increased, the risk of some of these devices might outweigh the conveniences.

Security has not been a prime focus for many devices hitting the market. This makes it easy for hackers to turn these seemingly innocuous devices into drones. Owners may not even realize their device has been compromised. Security solutions are needed, and quick.

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Solutions

With all of these interconnected devices entering homes, we are entering a period with a high demand for cyber security technicians. The need for security is at an all-time high as the complexity of cybercrime has increased. Individuals pursuing this path need to be able to think like a hacker while possessing a unique set of ethics. Cybercrime is advancing at an incredible rate. An infographic of the current state and possible solutions is a great resource for cyber security professionals.

Many organizations are in need of cyber security personnel including hospitals, governments, banks, military institutions and corporations. This growing need makes pursuing a degree in cyber security a worthwhile endeavor. Both offensive and defensive security is needed. Offensive Specialists take a proactive approach to protection. Sometimes they even attack their own systems to detect any weaknesses. Defensive Specialists create firewalls and patch software. This approach follows a more traditional method of safeguarding technology.

Whether risks outweigh conveniences, smart devices are slowly entering our daily lives. Society needs a competent army of cyber security professionals to create a safe environment for a new world of interconnectivity. While hackers are hard at work, security specialists need to be equally hard at work improving protection and flagging vulnerabilities.