What is Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity refers to the body of technologies, processes and practices designed to protect and defend computers, networks, servers, applications, electronic systems, and data from intentional malicious attacks, damage, theft or unauthorized access. The most important goal of cybersecurity is to protect information and data.
In other words, cybersecurity is about protecting your brand and reputation from internal and external cyber threats and attacks. Many view cybersecurity as the CIA triad model designed to guide policies for cybersecurity within an organization, which is confidentiality, integrity, and availability.
Below are different types of cybersecurity domains that you should be aware of.
Types of Cybersecurity Domains:
Network Security is designed to protect the usability and integrity of network and data which includes both hardware and software technologies. It has multiple layers which implements security policies and controls. There are different types of network security such as Firewalls, Emails security, Anti-virus and anti-malware software, Network Segmentation, VPN, Web security and Wireless Security. We all depend on technologies for almost everything like online-banking, e-shop, social media, e-news, GPS map, virtual meeting, etc. Technology has made our lives easy and saves our time. However hackers take advantage of it and there have been a lot of issues of hacking. Thus network security helps to protect proprietary information and from attacks.
2. Application Security
Application Security is designed to protect applications from threats throughout the entire application lifecycle with the help of discipline of processes, tools and practices. It uses software and hardware methods to protect from external and internal threats. Applications are much accessible over the network. Static testing, Dynamic testing, Interactive testing and Mobile testing are different types of application security testings to take preventive measure to protect application from vulnerabilities and integration flaws. Secure code scanning, penetration testing, vulnerability scans, mobile penetration test, are forms of technical audits to review current maturity and cybersecurity posture of tested applications.
3. Endpoint Security
The increase in BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) and employees working from home or connecting to Wifi networks are threats targeting mobile devices access and networks, and it creates multiple endpoint vulnerabilities. It allows most security breaches to come in through the network. However, threats are increasingly coming in through endpoints, which means centralized network protection does not go far enough. It requires new layers of security through endpoint protection and the security must maintain greater control over access points to vulnerabilities. Using an endpoint security approach makes endpoints more heavily responsible for security than anti-virus software that protects the network alone.
4. Cloud Security
Enterprises rely on the cloud because of the cloud’s accessibility. In very simple terms, cloud means storing and accessing data and programs over the Internet instead of a computer’s hard drive. It was first popularized with Amazon releasing it’s Elastic Compute Cloud product in 2006. With the increasing demand of the cloud, it became more important to protect the data and information in the cloud.
Cloud security is a software-based security tool that protects and monitors the data. It involves maintaining adequate prevention precautions to let people be aware; the data and systems are safe, check status of security, let people know if there is any unusual activity or login through email or text message, and it can also trace and respond to unexpected events.
5. Internet of Thing or IoT Security
According to Bain & Company’s prediction the combined market of IoT will grow to about $520 billion in 2021 and more than double the $235 billion was spent in 2017. The IoT refers to the billion of physical devices around the world that are connected to the Internet and it is collecting and sharing data. Some examples of IoT are Google Home, Amazon’s Echo, activity trackers, smart lock and smart mirror, smart Grids, etc. Security is one of the biggest issues with the IoT. The sensors of the Iot devices collect information or it could be sensitive data and it is exposed to vulnerability. IoT devices give some basic security, like encrypting data in transit and at rest. It makes sure that you have a unique and strong password, and notify us if there is anything suspicious. However it is also important for consumers to take some preventive measures like covering the webcam of a laptop while not using it, updating software from time to time, using a trusted platform module (TPM) for authentication, updating passwords of wifi, etc.
6. Critical Infrastructure Security
For the past couple of years, cyberattacks on critical infrastructure security have become increasingly more complex and more disruptive. It is causing systems to shut-down, disruption operations, or enabling attackers to remotely control affected systems. Some examples of critical infrastructure such as traffic lights, electricity grid, water supply, security services, public health etc. Cyberattacks on critical infrastructure can have a huge impact on the economy, especially when targeted in conflict between nations. Thus, it has become very important to secure the critical infrastructure to make sure nations are in peace and safe. The Critical Infrastructure security team should continuously seek to identify new possible risks and also to understand existing risk to protect. Penetration testing, installing Al-based solutions, patching new vulnerabilities, security awareness are some important measures to implement in order to protect the critical infrastructure from being hacked.
Cybersecurity Framework is a set of industry standards and best practices to help organizations manage cybersecurity Frameworks. It is a common language to address and manage cybersecurity risk in a cost-effective way based on business needs without placing additional regulatory requirements on business. It was created through collaboration between the government and the private sector. Below are the five Framework core functions explained.
- Identity: Identity develops the organizational understanding to manage cybersecurity risk to system, assets, data, and capabilities. Examples of outcome Categories within this Function includes: Asset management, Business strategies, Governance, Risk assessments, and Risk Management Strategy.
- Protect: Protect develops and implements the appropriate safeguards to ensure the delivery of critical infrastructure services. Access control, Awareness and Training, Data Security, Information Protection Processes and Procedures, Maintenances and Protective Technology are examples of outcome Categories within the Protect Function.
- Detect: Detect develops and implements the appropriate activities to identify the occurrence of a cybersecurity event. It includes Anomalies and Events, Security Continuous Monitoring and Detection Process.
- Respond: Respond develops and implements the appropriate activities to take action regarding a detected cybersecurity event. Examples of outcome Categories within this Function includes: Response Planning, Communication, Analysis, Mitigation, and Improvements.
- Recover: Recover develops and implements the appropriate activities to maintain plans for resilience and to restore any capabilities that were impaired due to a cybersecurity event. It includes Recovery Planning, Improvements, and Communication.
Example of a Cybersecurity framework is NIST 800-61 r2 – Computer Security Incident Handling Guide. (https://nvlpubs.nist.gov/nistpubs/SpecialPublications/NIST.SP.800-61r2.pdf)
Cybersecurity Career requirement
- College Degree
Do you really need a degree in Cybersecurity in order to pursue a career in the cybersecurity field? The answer is May be or May be not, depending on a person’s technical skills and cybersecurity knowledge. However most of the companies prefer and expect from candidates to have some basic skills, some technical and non-technical experiences and knowledge to start the career.
Why do you need a certification even if you have a degree in Cybersecurity? There are many types of technical certification from different organizations such as CompTIA, ISACA, Amazon, CSA, Blockchain Training Alliance, etc. Everyday there is a new innovation, updates on technologies, new softwares and hardware and most of the companies keep updating on their technology. The certification is a way to demonstrate that a person is keeping up with the industry to pursue a career in the cybersecurity field.
With a degree in Cybersecurity or Computer Science field and getting a certification is a great way to land in a cybersecurity field. If a person has some hands-on experiences from volunteer or internships, it is a bonus point to start a cybersecurity job. However most students find it challenging to get into an internship. Experience means a new way to learn something from doing hands-on projects and adding new skills (soft and hard) which includes college projects. For example, if you have a class project and you have team members to work with. It is very important to understand your role in the team, how you manage your group conflicts, how team members are communicating and how you and your team members overcome challenges in the project. Overall, it is essential that what you have learnt from the project, and what and how many soft and hard skills you have improved and added. This is all part of the experience and it is important in the real-tech industry.
This article shows the importance of cybersecurity in all business sectors and also in people’s lives. Cybersecurity experts are the face of business success and they are the security of the nation. With the collaboration of the government and private sector, they have created a common language to address and manage cybersecurity risk in a cost-effective way based on business needs without placing additional regulatory requirements on business. Therefore cybersecurity jobs are high in demand from small companies to large sized companies. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of growth for jobs in information security is projected at 37% from 2021-2022 (which is faster than the average for all other occupations). In the increasing competition of the job market, to land a cybersecurity dream job, companies expect new students or candidates to have a degree in Computer Science or related to Cybersecurity degree, experiences and a certification (bonus).