You know cyber terrorism is for real when they break into the databases of FBI partnered organizations. In our last post, we discussed how the ISIS has equipped itself to carry out cyber-attacks on governments and business entities. In this edition, we talk about steps you need to take to keep it safe and functional.
There are two chief causes of concern on cyber terrorism:
- There is no tested or universal safeguard
- There is no official and unanimous definition of cyber terrorism
It is fairly difficult to counter an undefined or unknown enemy. But there are fairly simple steps that are often surprisingly sufficient to save you from a potential cyber terror attack. Here is a roundup of four such steps.
Step 1: Use protection for hardware and software
Strong systems to detect intrusions are already available. You may install one of these after proper tests and verification. Once installed, show alacrity in your response to any detected intrusion. It is highly recommended to keep programs patched when receiving security updates from vendors. This logs in all activities and you will be able to detect anomalies.
It goes without saying that you should choose only trusted and reputed vendors when securing computer software and hardware.
Step 2: Partner with defensive entities
New defensive organizations have been set up in the public-private partnership model to counter cyber threats. The FBI can be used as a resource to keep learning new threats and defense mechanisms. Your system should be kept secure with effective firewalls and moderate to highly strong passwords. System firewalls are also great aids in warding off threats.
Use strong antivirus software. Update regularly and run weekly checks to detect and remove anything unusual.
Step 3: Create a watertight security policy
Ask employees not to open email attachments that look even remotely dubious. If there is no pressing need, do not respond to messages from unknown sources. Install regular check routines to ensure compliance with regulations and policies. Follow reports and news that warn about regular threats, including new worms or malware circulated by cyber terrorists.
Install filters that screen out messages or material from known sources of cyber terrorism and even from some rogue countries.
Step 4: Keep testing the waters
It is a wise idea to employ a security service that keeps running tests on your systems and reports any discrepancy. You may use a secure encryption service for both external and internal messages. A good company will also provide you with a password system that regularly checks passwords. Make sure to use complex passwords that include combinations of special characters, upper and lower cases and numbers.
Cyber terrorism could be an amateur adventure or a planned attack by trained professionals. Following the steps mentioned above will help you shield both.