The World now fears a cyber-equivalent of COVID-19
New Delhi: The warning of a ‘Cyber Pearl Harbour’ or ‘Cyber 9/11’in the last decade has transformed into a mass fear. The inevitability of change and calamity became part and parcel of daily life. However, when the coronavirus pandemic struck, the dormant fear of a global cyber-pandemic began to gain momentum- this time, it was real.
Experts in the cyber security have renewed the debate around cyber-pandemic and its impacts to spread awareness. At an online summit organized by the Israeli- American Council and the Peres Centre for Peace and Innovation, Gil Shwed – the Co-Founder and CEO of Check Point Software Technologies Ltd, which is the world’s largest pure-play cyber security company, stated that, “the new reality created by the pandemic gave rise to cyber security threats, despite Israel being the leader in cyber security. The happenings in the last three months have pushed forward five, maybe even 10 years of technological evolution.”
The World has already seen the trailer through the Great Twitter Hack of 2020. Through a centralized social media channel, ‘high-profile individuals’ were used as scapegoatsfor minimal financial gain in crypto currency- which left most analysts and international media in a fix. The hacker’s purpose was simply to display their power when holding the reigns of influencers’ social media handles- forget the Bit coin scandal, this had the ability to trigger a WW-III. This brings us to the most crucial aspect of a cyber-pandemic -National Security. Several government bodies have reported an increase of malware, phishing and ransom ware attempts in their defense ministries, making the likelihood of such an attack globally catastrophic.
As far as white-hat hackers and cyber security professionals are concerned, the basic necessity would be to collaborate. Black-hat attackers are successful in their data breach hacks because of 2 main reasons – Their once-a-while success rate (which seems more than enough when done right) and they work in collaboration. Unlike hackers, we have to succeed every time we prevent a hack, while they only have to focus on targeting. Another possibility to prevent the cyber-pandemic, although seemingly impossible, would be to return to the good old days, which is living without digital revolution. Just like governments and businesses that transformed digitally to keep themselves going in the pandemic, enterprises would have to roll back in order to survive a cyber-COVID.
Kazi Monirul Kabir, a serial entrepreneur has founded, speed lined, consulted and boosted more than 40 start-ups from ground-up. He was the former country head of Google Bangladesh, and currently sits on the board of Httpool. He specializes in Digital Transformation and Cyber Security, helping governments around the world to secure them digitally. Kazi Monirul Kabir, on ways to save ourselves from future cyber-attacks said, “A successful cyber-attack has a compound reproductive rate. While social distancing reduces the rate of infection, the same preventive measure cannot be followed in a digital attack, as global and local networks are interconnected and not every network can be protected to the endpoint. Something as tiny as a ‘bug’ at one location can compromise the entire database. Digital defenders need to adopt a local and international firewall mechanism to help handicap the spread of a cyber-attack.” He added, “This cyber-COVIDattack would cost the world $1 trillion, within a global cyber lockdown of 21 days. In such a scenario, contact tracing would help. Just like countries that intensify testing across population spectrums to prevent the spread, cyber security professionals should identify the local loopholes in systems. I understand it is impossible to zero down on an anomaly before (or during) a cyber-crisis because of the global nature of the internet, which is true, but road mapping and tracing pathways of normal data flow can give valuable insight into potential vulnerabilities. Also, slowing down the attack can buy the compromised organization, time to minimize losses. Since cyber security is a long road that requires constant investment in cutting-edge defense, this buyout could result in achieving potential profits for the long haul.”
What remains of importance is that this digital attack has been long anticipated, now, with even more certainty.
For more information: http://kazimonirulkabir.com/