Friday, March 28, 2008

Loose Technology

Loose Technology

What is a hacker one may ask? He doesn't wear a stocking mask over his face, nor does he break a window to get into your house. He doesn't hold a gun to your head, nor does he go through your personal possessions. Considering the situation, he recognized just the way a thief is recognized. But one strange thing about this thief is that you'll never be able to see him, although you may not even realize right away that he's the one that robbed you. This thief is a computer hacker and he enters your home via your computer, which allows him to access your personal information. Amazing huh!!

It's very difficult to imagine that any person in today's technological oriented world could function without computers. Personal computers (Pc's) are linked to business computers and financial networks, and they are all are linked together via the Internet or other networks. As computer becomes more and more popular and important to our society, we can use computers everywhere and they are very useful and helpful to our daily lives. The extreme speeds and accuracy of computer has made people felt confident and reliable. Considering the population in the United States and throughout the world, there are more then a hundred millionth electronic messages that travel through cyberspace (internet) every day, and every piece of information is stored on a computer that is very vulnerable to attack. On any personal computers there are many important information or data are saved in the computer. Things such as: your diary, the financial statements of a company, or maybe something that is very secret which only the intelligence of the military or FBI department can read. A lot of important information can be found in the memory of computer. So, knowing the consequences people may begin to wonder and ask questions.

As older and newer companies are emerging, companies are becoming more aware and scared by the fact that their computers are prone to attack. Virus scanners (such as McAfee or Norton) are becoming requirements on every machine. When it comes to installing such programs and monitoring these virus scanners, it usually takes tremendous amount of time and tons of money for site licenses. Many server programs are coming equipped with a program called "netlog." Which makes it a big advantage because this program not only monitors the computer use of the employees in a company on the network but it also monitors memory and file usage. A well-trained system administrator can usually be able to tell by the amounts of memory being used and the file usage if something is going on that should not be. When a virus is found, system administrators can usually pinpoint the user who put the virus into the network and investigate and determine whether or not if it was done intentionally.

Computer security can work in different ways with different methods. One option might be by locking it up or by password securing it. Another password security approach would be to have the computer user carry a digital screen that fits in your pocket. This digital screen will receive an encrypted message and will displays the numbers that change every few minutes. These numbers generate and make the password sequentially one after the next for the next few minutes in order to access the computer. This password security method is pretty much a new option to computer networks and much better then the previous password method. The reason so is because the passwords are stored in the computer and if a computer literate person was to access this information, then they mostly likely could get into a computer and enter it looking as if they were someone else, and at the same time they would have gotten someone else's password. Strange huh? But you have not seen anything yet. As time progresses when technology increasingly gets better there are more possibilities that you could never imagine such as a computer could use you hand, inner eye, or voiceprint as a security option. Right now these methods are not being used, but they will be shortly considering the fact that new technology is increasing rapidly. The best way to absolutely secure you're computer is to lock it but considering computer networks these days, they cannot be easily done unless you are dealing with a single computer.

To fully stop or prevent the hackers and other criminals, us people need to set up a well-known good security system in order to protect the data and information stored in the computer. One of the most important things is that we cannot allow these so called hackers and criminals to enter our computers. Not only does it mean that we need to design and construct a lock-to-lock system but we need to order up all our data and use identification system in order to verify the identity of someone seeking access to our computers. One of the most commonly used methods is to lock up the information using a password system. Passwords are a multi-user computer system's usually the first class defense against hackers. Generally, we can use a variety of alphabetic letters or number characters to form our very own password. The longer the password is, the more chances a hacker's password-guessing program must work through. However it is sometimes difficult to remember a very long password. Usually people do is think of ways how to memorize or sometimes some will try to write the password down, which then increases the security risk because someone may find it and use it. In other words, a high speed password-guessing program can find out a password easily, which makes it risk for the users and therefore, it is not just good enough for a user to have just a password system to protect its data and memory but should have other anti-hacking programs as well.

One major computer application that is becoming more widely used and, therefore, more widely abused, is the use of electronic mail or email. Right now in the present day, illegal hackers can fairly easily read emails by going through a server. When we use email we sometimes send information that are private such as personal transactions, personal documents, or other things such as financial transactions, etc. The poor thing about e-mail's is that there are not many encryption procedures out there for email yet. When every time a person accesses the Internet, he or she is not only accessing the host computer, but the many other computers that connect the host and the user. When an individual person transmits credit card information, it transmits over many computers before it reaches its final destination. What an illegal hacker can do is set up one of the connecting computers to copy the credit card information as it passes through the computer. So in other words, that is how credit card fraud is committed with the help of the Internet. Big Companies such as Maxis and Sierra, what they are doing is making secure sites. These sites have the capabilities to receive credit card information securely. Which means that a consumer/customer can buy goods with a credit card over the Internet without thinking that someone else will see that number.

As coming to a conclusion it is very important and valuable to realize that a computer system, no matter how much of precaution you take, it will never be completely safe. As technology is increasing and putting higher security on protection software (Black Ice, Norton, Mcafee, etc), so are the hackers who are trying their very best to get into your system. Now that doesn't mean that you are completely hopeless and all your files are going to be seen and hacked. Scientist today are researching and are coming up with new ideas and are testing them on different kind of computer security systems but no scientist can prove or say that this is the best unbreakable security system or software, because that would be considered false. Because if you just think about it if one can create a software or computer security system then surely someone out there could possibly crack/hack that software system. Many specialists in the technology field would say, "that if someone with enough resources can possibly crack almost any computer defense system." Now for that reason, the most important and key thing is the behavior of the individuals. So therefore, if every individual in this world would have good manners and proper conduct, then there would be no need to use any highly sophisticated computer security systems just to protect the computer networks out there.

Works Cited

Merkow, Marks., and Breithaupt. E-Privacy Imperative. American Management Association. 2002.

Walker, Kathryn., Linda Croswhite, and Cavanaugh. Computer Securities Policies. Sun Microsystems, Inc. 1998.

Schneier, Bruce., Secrets & Lies: Digital Security in a Networked World. Wiley Computer Publishing. 2000.

Schweitzer, Douglas. Securing the Network from Malicious Code. Wiley Publishing, Inc. 2002.

Schweitzer, Douglas. Internet Security Made Easy. American Management Association. 2002.

SAMS Publishing. Maxium Security: A Hacker's Guide to Protecting Your Internet Site and Network. 3rd edition. 2001

by Anonymous Student



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