Friday, August 23, 2013

The importance of cybersecurity

If you manage servers, I encourage you to review your security protocols. The StarTribune reports hackers are increasingly targeting universities. The article mentions the U of M and St. Cloud State University as two Minnesota examples that are fighting back against cyberattacks.

Massoud Amin at the U of M's Technological Leadership Institute is quoted saying "Cyberthreats are real. They evolve quickly. They've become more malicious and more prevalent." Henry May, chief information officer for St. Cloud State University, adds security is "something that consumes more time and resources than it did a year ago or three years ago." Brian Dahlin, director of information security at the U of M's Office of Information Technology, highlights that "attackers continue to get more sophisticated" which means organizations need "to improve their ability to identify attacks."

The reasons for hackers attacking a system can vary. Most cybercriminals seek personal or financial gain, according to a 2012 report on data breaches published by Verizon. However, the report also noted an increase in the instances of hacktivism—attacks for political or social reasons. So even if your system doesn't contain private data, you still have an obligation to protect it with the same high level of security and attention.

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