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What is Cyber Security and why is it so important?

According to Cisco, Cyber Security is “the practice of protecting systems, networks, and programs from digital attacks*”, and there are typically four types of Cyber Security threats:

  •    Phishing – The most common form of cyber attack! This is the practice of sending fraudulent emails that look like they have come from other, reputable sources, for the purpose of gaining access to your card details.
  •    Malware – The second most common form of cyber attack, which most people have experienced or heard of. This threat is a type of software designed to gain unauthorised access
  •    Ransomware – A type of malicious software, designed to block access to files until a ransom is paid
  •    Social engineering – This tactic is used to trick users into revealing private information, either through soliciting a monetary payment or gain access via confidential data* [Source: Cisco]

More than 4 out of 10 UK businesses suffered a data breach over the last 12 months and you’re now more likely to be a victim of cybercrime than you are a burglary! Cyber security is a necessity for businesses around the world and it is no longer considered a luxury afforded by a few, larger organisations. 

Cyber Security has been a hot topic in both the media and the business world in the past year – primarily ignited by the WannaCry ransomware attack, which disrupted the NHS on a grand scale in May 2017. It raised some serious questions about IT security, not only for the UK’s health service but also the 200,000 victims across 150 countries worldwide. It was the wake-up call which many organisations have needed for some time, and is important now more than ever, as it protects businesses (and individuals) from cyber attacks, which can cost businesses a lot of money to put right.

The WannaCry ransomware attack

The software used in the cyberattack was reportedly ‘relatively unsophisticated’ yet still succeeded in downing the entire NHS network, hitting patients in 81 health trusts and almost 600 GP surgeries. It was later revealed that basic security measures hadn’t been followed for downloading security patches, coupled with the fact the health service was using an outdated version of Windows.

It was only thanks to the quick thinking of an amateur hacker, triggering a crucial fix from his bedroom, which stopped the devastating spread of the virus. He is now, understandably, assisting the government’s National Cyber Security taskforce.

Cyber Security Courses and qualifications

You may remember reading in the Guardian about Japan’s Cyber Security Minister, admitting he has never used a computer, which caused quite a stir back in 2018. He quoted: “Since the age of 25, I have instructed my employees and secretaries, so I don’t use computers myself.”

As you can see, you don't need to be a computer genius to enrol on a Cyber Security course and experience succes in the industry, just dedication and a good working knowledge of the skills and techniques taught throughout the courses. 

With many jobs being created within the Cyber Security sector, it's worth considering becoming accredited as a Cyber Security specialist, through a well-known awarding body.

e-Careers offers a wide range of certified Cyber Security courses, including industry recognised ‘mile2’ qualifications.

    Cyber security and business

    Within the last decade or so, skills such as programming, coding, cyber security – and what is essentially legal and ethical ‘hacking’ have become a stand-out skillset on any CV – and this is only set to continue as the jobs of the future come to the fore.

    Businesses are quickly coming to the realisation that their IT team does far more than manage email and CRM systems. Ultimately, network security is not just about maintaining hardware and software; it’s about protecting the physical assets of an organisation from outside forces, which could potentially be beyond their control.

    What’s more, the growth, intelligence and sophistication of these ‘outside forces’ is only accelerating as technology advances – which means more and more businesses and organisations are struggling to keep pace.

    Investing in the right security solutions – and the skillset of the workforce that delivers them through comprehensive training – is the key to protecting businesses from both current and future threats to cyber security. It is only this change and investment that will enable firms to truly get ahead of hackers today.

    For more information, visit our cyber security course pages or contact one of our training experts today on 0203 198 7700.

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