Managing Cyber Security

It is hard to imagine there was once a time when the internet did not exist. It is equally hard to imagine a time when you did not sit in front of a laptop or a desktop computer to pay bills, find a date, sell things second hand, order food, or do just about anything imaginable. However, many readers over a certain age (like me) can remember the days before the digital revolution that resulted in the brave new world of technology that we now inhabit. There were other periods in history that were similar to the period we are now in when it comes to astounding applications of new forms of technology.

Early in the development of the digital age, many cynical business leaders dismissed computers as nothing more than a combination of a fast but dumb typewriter and adding machine. This attitude gave way as electronic systems sped up business processes in much the same way that the auto and airplane revolutionized travel. Computers became linked and not long after were ‘talking’ to each other. Soon, there were complaints from everyone about the annoying number of emails in their cyber in-basket.

© The Author(s) 2017

L. Wright, People, Risk, and Security,

DOI 10.1057/978-1-349-95093-5_6

Along with all this positive technological development came the use of it by some for criminal, and other, purposes. It was not long before some of those emails were obvious fraudulent efforts by conmen who hoped to get unsuspecting victims to part with funds. Today there are an infinite number cyber systems that impact almost every aspect of one’s personal and professional life. And while poorly written scam emails by conmen are pretty much a thing of the past, they have been replaced by tools and techniques used by more dangerous actors that have much greater implications for the world of cyber security. The level of sophistication of those intent on doing harm electronically has more than kept up with the technical developments of the cyber world. There is a tendency to think of the current cyber world we all use as one that has been around for a very long time. It really has not. It was only in the early to mid-1990s that the internet began to link computers on a large scale. In a sense, the Wild West that still existed in part of the world during the early days of the auto has a parallel in the young cyber world. Though there has been remarkable technological development that now drives the economies of nations, and links businesses, organizations, and individuals, there is still a Wild West part of the young cyber world that is populated by bandits and villains.

 
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