We are now in an information age, and as we get more connected, more data is vulnerable than ever before. There are those that want to take advantage of that vulnerability. One example would be stuxnet. When I first heard about stuxnet I was amazed. I was amazed at what a computer worm can do. I was amazed at what someone sitting in front a computer screen can do to a whole country’s infrastructure. Stuxnet was a weapon, all made entirely out of code. It could destroy a country. Stuxnet was able to shutdown and end 1000 nuclear centrifuges in Iran’s main enrichment facility, while relaying messages back to the main computer telling it everything was fine. Although stuxnet has been stopped, questions still emerge on who designed it? However, I and many others feel the real problem and the main questions are who will redesign it? And what will they use it for? Stuxnet is still available online as an open source for anyone around the world to play around with. Danger still looms. It ...view middle of the document...
06, all in 2012, from users who were scammed by one certain type of malware, which impersonated itself as the FBI. Overall, Americans have a lost $525,441,110.00, and counting, from cyber scams.
Just like stuxnet, other viruses and worms have appeared and have been successful in taking down corporations, government websites, and gaining important information from companies and countries. In 2011, the RSA, a top computer security firm, was critically hit and damaged by what many called “an extremely sophisticated cyber attack.” The RSA cyber attack endangered many U.S. government and bank employees’ encryption keys, which can be used to gain access to passwords. There is no hard evidence on what the attackers actually took, but the attack demonstrates that, if a top security firm can get hit with an attack, anyone can get hit. In 2012, a virus called shamoon emerged and was able to destroy more than 20,000 desktops and servers belonging to a Saudi Arabian natural gas and oil company. Shamoon was designed for cooperate espionage and could spread to other computers which would relay critical information back to the attacker. Also in 2012, another major virus called the televant virus infiltrated the company giant, Televant, which writes software to monitor energy industries. No one essentially knows what the virus did to its networks; however televant was sure that the attacker was able to get a hold of customer and employee files. All these attacks are daily reminders and demonstrations of what attackers could really do to our infrastructures.
The emergence of stuxnet, the RSA attack, the Shamoon virus, the Televant attack, and now heartbleed, were all reasons why I began developing an interest in the security aspect of computer science. Last month, I began an independent study in cyber security and registered myself in an online cyber security class through the Cisco networking academy at school. I hope to of gaining more information on networks and modern defense through my studies and enrollment in the class. I want to aid in the securitization of our networks for our nation and our organizations. I want to try and help prevent attacks that could be executed by zero day exploitations. I believe that helping our country secure private data from cyber attacks, cyber terrorist, and rivals such as Russia and China, is a top priority.