4 Steps to Defeat Criminal Hackers

Sneakers' and other hacker movies with an echo of truth – On the Issues

With the recent cyber hacking extremes, hackers have taken billions of dollars in 2020 and 2021 alone. However, many companies and government sectors are fighting each cyber breach tooth and nail. It’s no surprise that there are growing demands for both sectors coming together to fight these cyber attacks. Here are four ways the government and businesses will most likely join forces in the battle for cybersecurity:

Share Hacking Threat Intelligence

Governments and companies have different sources of information, insight, and intelligence. Pooling these variables together will create a razor-sharp picture of threats to have strategies ready to fight off any hacking attack launched by criminal hackers. In some places, something similar is already taking place. The United Kingdom National Cyber Security Centre operates a Cyber Security Information Sharing Partnership with several industries.

CISA partnerships with US operators with fundamental links to cybersecurity (ex. Microsoft). Europol; the European Union law enforcement agency, took this a step further and created a website where public and private entities can share decryption tools to recover from ransomware attacks- without paying the criminal hackers.

The recently announced Nationwide Cybersecurity Center collaboration with Google to provide cyber training to US state legislators and their staff represents the kind of initiative that should happen to keep cyber breaches in check. For this to work internationally, disclosure of potential threats is pivotal; while amending otherwise unwelcomed scrutiny and penalties.

Align Cyber Security Education with Market Needs

Governments, private companies, and other institutions worldwide deal with a shortage of cybersecurity professionals. Meanwhile, criminal hackers estimate at over 3 million more than the 2.8 million ethical hackers currently working in the field. So far, The US National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education must revise its framework for developing certified hackers. Schools can provide more relevant instruction where companies can ensure that graduates have the necessary competencies for dealing with cybersecurity threats.

The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre created CyberFirst, offering everything from university financial assistance and apprenticeships to summer programs to attract young people to the field.

The Cybersecurity Workforce Alliance was founded by major financial institutions includes the City University of New York (CUNY). In addition, workforce development specialist iQ4 – boasts more than 2,700 members from industry, academia, and government. This partnership aims to provide internships to over 10,000 US students through 2022. The New York City Economic Development Corp recently teamed up with local businesses and universities to create cyber degree programs and an accelerator to foster start-ups for cybersecurity companies. However, to fill the gaping cyber hacking protection gap, more than this partnership is necessary.

Sharpen Hacking Incident-Response Capabilities

We’ve seen it before with cyber-giants highlighting that the best cyber defense is prone to hacking. Hackers can wreak havoc on who we once thought were untouchable. In response to the wide-scale cyber-attacks, several nations provide forums where governments and businesses collaborate in response to cyberattacks. CISA’s National Cyber Incident Response Plan defines cyber defense as a “shared responsibility” of individuals, the private sector, and the government. The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre, an arm of the GCHQ intelligence agency, coordinates similar responses and sets out which private-sector cyber specialists suitable for collaboration.

However, these plans should include training exercises, not just theories. The financial sector provides a good example here, as the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association has been conducting cybersecurity exercises since 2011. More industries and government sectors should adhere to this example. Both sides must learn about cyber threats and be better prepared to defend against devastating hacking breaches.

Build Cyber Security by Design

Human error, like falling for a phishing attack and downloading malware contributes to at least 95% of successful cyberattacks. We can reduce this by building better security into technology devices in the first place. This many tech firms tend to ignore rushing to bring new products and services to market.

One example is Australia’s eSafety Commissioner, the world’s first government agency devoted to increasing public education about cyber-risks. In 2019, the agency convened representatives of industry, government, consumer advocates, and non-profits to agree to a set of principles for increasing the inherent safety of online services.

One of these principles is the idea that safety should never be the sole responsibility of the consumer. Companies must mitigate risk factors for all users before releasing services to the public. In December, the US adopted legislation requiring the government to set higher standards for the security of IoT devices.

The ultimate goal of this endeavor is an international cyber equivalent of the British Standards Institution’s Kitemark, a designation showing that everything from electrical appliances to mobile devices meets safety standards.

As technology evolves, the growing importance to society increases with cybersecurity becoming a constantly evolving challenge. The best way to beat hacking attacks is for governments and the private sector to face cyber-security threats together.