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Our previous article on cybersecurity approached the issue from the perspective of the individual internet user and showed the breadth of issues that we face and the simple things we can do to make our online interactions safer. This article has a different focus: How are organisations managing the cybersecurity risks that they face?
All Australians have some kind of relationship with large organisations that hold their data, be they corporations, not-for-profits, or governments. While we can take efforts to personally safeguard our own data, we are also reliant on the efforts of others. As consumers and citizens, we often blithely assume that these organisations are protecting their (our) data from harm. Those assumptions may not be wholly justified. This article will begin with an overview of the types of hostile parties and threats that organisations face and how they are meeting those threats.
The situation becomes even more complex when we are employed in roles where we play a role in information security – which we often do as information professionals. “Security” may not be our main priority but it is nevertheless there. The second half of the article, through practitioner quotes and academic research, explores the challenges that managing security as one of a number of information priorities presents to us.
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One of the key themes of the articles we have written for this publication is that “software is eating the world”. To put it another way, many everyday activities and objections are being transformed by internet-based technologies. This is not necessarily a sinister plot. This is happening because most of us benefit in the process. If we want to buy, sell, rent, hire, talk, shout or share, this internet-enabled world helps us do that more easily. However this process is not all hugs, puppies and emojis. These technologies transform our relationships with each other in ways that are not wholly healthy and may expose us to shame and ridicule. They also may compromise our property and physical safety. How will we deal with this collectively and individually?
“Cybersecurity” is a growing area of attention for government, companies and individuals. 2014 offered many examples including the hacking of nude photos of Jennifer Lawrence and the release of large quantities of sensitive information from the Sony Corporation by individuals who may be associated with North Korea.
This article will:
- explore the personal implications of cybersecurity. What risks do we face as individuals?
- look at the range of technical threats cybersecurity tries to protect against. How do these threats manifest themselves and what does that mean for prevention?
- discuss cybersecurity initiatives that impact information professionals such as the eSmart libraries program.
An upcoming article will examine the organisational issues around cybersecurity.
What were you doing in 2008? Whatever you were doing, it is unlikely that you were celebrating the eclipse of the human race (although the global financial crisis may have given you some cause to do so). According to Cisco (2011), in 2008, the number of things connected to the internet exceeded the number of people on earth. These “things” are not just media devices directly controlled by human beings (computers, laptops, phones, tablets) but sensors – attached to plants, animals, cars, buildings and factories.
The Internet of Things is now “a thing”. It is topic of discussion, speculation and investment. Like many of the topics we discuss in these articles, it is almost certainly a source of hype. However the broad range of technologies under the IoT heading are real and will have a long term impact on our personal and professional lives.
This article will begin by outlining the technological developments that have driven the development of IoT. We will continue by outlining some of the emerging applications that we can see now and in the near future. We will then discuss privacy and security concerns. We will end with some observations on the impacts of these technologies on information professionals.
Download the list of what people call it.
Stan Garfield deserves a shout out here but so does everyone else who contributed.