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What is Cyber Security?

In today’s global digital world, it seems that everything and everyone relies on the internet and on computers, whether we need to communicate through email and mobile phones, whether we are shopping through online stores and using credit cards, for our entertainment through igaming and mp4’s, to promote our business via social media…the list is endless.

Overall, the internet has made our lives much more comfortable and efficient. However, there can be another side to the story. Much of our personal information and that of our businesses and assets which are stored in our own computers and within the system of others can be at serious risk but cyber security can protect, prevent, detect and respond to any cyber attack.

E
ssentially all cyber security definitions point to the security of the cyberspace; namely all:

  • Interconnected ICT hardware and software infrastructure
  • Data in transit and at rest on the networks
  • Connected users
  • Logical connections established among them

In view of the above, the following definition of cyber security being adopted by the National Cyber Security Strategy is:

It is the safeguards and actions that can be used to protect cyber domain from those threats that are associated with or that may harm its interdependent networks and information infrastructure. It strives to preserve the availability and integrity of the networks and infrastructure and the confidentiality of the information contained therein.

Ess
entially, cyber security is based upon the foundations of information security, namely confidentiality, integrity and availability. Information security aims to safeguard citizens and reduce cyber space risk. The inherent interconnectedness of cyber-space exposes all of its constituents to a failure of their most vulnerable elements.

A
dditionally, effective cyber security cannot be reached by technological measures alone as modern cyber attacks could bypass all defence layers by exploiting the human factors through techniques such as social engineering.

H
ence, safeguards and actions hereby refer to ongoing and planned measures which may potentially be of technical, operational, legislative, educational, behavioural or disseminative nature.

A
bove all, cyber security cannot be seen from a technological aspect only, but needs to cover the needs and expectations of the state, the economy and society, all of which are increasingly active participants in an interactive digital world.