Computer Security Wake-up Call


Computer security wake -up call incidences continue to send a wave of cyber challenges for the massive number of individuals, professional groups, government agencies, and businesses/corporations operating many transactions through an elaborate computer system.  The wake-up call is a result of breaches to our computer systems and cyber attacks. These attacks have occurred for many years, yet, it appears they have been ignored. Now, it has become a reality for the public to pay very close attention.

For years, the username and password system has served as security for millions to access several networks. As the computer technology moved toward becoming a prime source for communication and the storage of materials, the  idea was to safeguard the system through antivirus protection, encryption, and firewalls.  However, it has become imperative that the computer technology world rethink this procedure as several incidences of hackers have compromised many accounts. As the Cyber Security Act of 2012 attempted to address changes to the cyber security wake-up calls, a bill in Congress was defeated due to the perception of its cost.

Presently, there are a number of ways for computer breaches to occur. Incidences where hackers have compromised personal information has increased. The username and password identity procedure is an easy venue for information such as someone’s address and social security number to be retrieved. In the recent Anthem case, the results implied that this current system was used by foreign hackers to find the personal information of 80 million people. The cause for what occurred was cited as a security login mishap.

Computer Cyber thieves are equipped with the capacity to release over 250,000 innovative variations of viruses. Sony Pictures, Target, Home Depot, and eBay among others were companies that became victims of these viruses. With Anthem, it was determined that this intrusion existed for almost a month before it was noticed. For Sony Pictures, the computer security wake-up call was not observed immediately. It was not until the computers had become disabled and inside information that only the people in the industry were privileged to know was released.

The threat to cyber security is a mammoth challenge to our privacy and well-being. Although organizations such as the Homeland Security, FBI, and the National Security Agency have prescribed responsibilities, these agencies are now tasked to take an in-depth look at their effectiveness and move with a purposeful agenda.

In 2012, the Department of Homeland Security reported 198 cyber assaults on the United States, which included oil and natural pipeline operations and nuclear power plants. It has been proposed to consider a Trustable Federated Identity  (TFI) service to support the computer security infrastructure that will include individual companies, government agencies, and private citizens.

President Obama, in his State of the Union address, communicated his support as he talked about the loss of delicate information stored on our networks and the  occurring within the American home. It was noted that the federal government, alone, experienced  61,000 intrusions, which has seriously impacted computer security.  As he has prepared his 2015 legislative agenda, he has included cyber security as one of the leading challenges for legislators to move swiftly. Monies may be used from the 2015 budget with an additional amount of $35,000 being asked for from the 2016 budget,which will provide much needed attention to the computer wake-up calls.

By: Marie A. Wakefield

The New Yorker

Washington Post


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