Sponsored by Cisco Security, ScanSource's Break I.T. Down podcast endeavors to help everyday listeners to better understand tech topic far and wide. Founded in November 2020, the team - Ian, Kyle, and Phillip - started with a three-part look at cybersecurity and how it is the anchor of everything happening in technology today. They start at the bottom in part one.
"Network security - physical layer stuff like firewalls and switches - are just the first layer of overall cybersecurity," says Kyle. "Cybersecurity is much bigger - it's how you protect everything behind that first layer, among many other things." Getting right into it, Kyle lays it out clearly: "The World Economic forum just designated cyber crime as the #1 most profitable crime in the world, bypassing illegal drug activity. With damages surpassing $3T in 2020 alone, it's vital to look at how we thwart the very first attempt to get into our networks."
In part two, the team discusses how the landscape has changed in recent years. With today's printers, refrigerators, and even crock pots acting as actual IoT devices (kid you not, you can actually use an app to start a pot roast) many people would be floored by just how easy it is for bag guys to get into seemingly harmless home devices. With human beings considered the weakest link in Cybersecurity, Kyle says, "A breach is inevitable."
This is part of why cybersecurity understanding, education, and a mitigation plan is crucial for today's security partner. Ransomware, phishing attacks, and other aspects of vulnerability have all become an increased part of life as workers have moved remote, which adds another layer of importance for both personal and professional reasons.
"In your average day of work or at home, it's basic stuff - don't click on random links! If you get an odd email that seems to be from a friend, hover over the email and double check it first before moving forward," Kyle says. "Then there's social engineering attacks, which are rooted in data we willingly provide in social media and other platforms." Examining your presence online, your data, and how much you "put out there" online can all help protect you from social engineering attacks. "It can get pretty creepy what's actually out there, when you start to think about it."
The team also cautions listeners about the factor convenience plays in vulnerability. Ease of access through using your Facebook login for other applications and sites that make it available to you may seem like a too-easy route, but there's a security sacrifice that comes with it.
Closing out in part three with the topic of zero-trust as an approach, the team deconstructs how “trusting nobody” is probably the healthiest thing you can do when it comes to cybersecurity.
“This includes technology like multifactor authentication (MFA), which always challenges that trust and requires confirmation that this person/program trying to access your network is in fact a ‘good guy’,” Kyle says. “The key with this approach is that you’re doing real-time confirmation on the validity and intentions of whoever is trying to access your network.” Zero Trust solutions also help proactively disconnect lost or stolen devices to prevent bad actors from being able to gain access to data belonging to individuals or companies. Password complexity, diversity, and changing passwords often are also all aspects of password security that relate to how our overall cybersecurity posture can be improved. In terms of MFA, Cisco’s Duo technology is a leading one that ScanSource and many other companies rely on for easy and secure access to VPN.
To listen to all three brief, engaging episodes and hear all the discussion around cybersecurity, zero trust technologies, and different kinds of cybersecurity threats, click on over to the Break I.T. Down homepage and grab your headphones!