In our opinion: Individuals and governments should do more to recognize and combat cyber attacks – Deseret News

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“Its important that businesses, governments and individuals adopt and continually revise best practices as a way to both deter and deny malicious internet actors from profiting off of cyber vulnerabilities. Those who would never think to keep their door unlocked or ajar in a rough neighborhood don’t think twice about letting malicious hackers gain access to their private data.”

Individuals and governments should do more to recognize and combat insidious cyber attacks. Sen. Orrin Hatchs new bipartisan bill, the so-called Promoting Good Cyber Hygiene Act, is a fine first step worthy of congressional support.

Only a few weeks after the so-called WannaCry ransomware attack paralyzed tens of thousands of computers, yet another internet outbreak hit Ukraine and 64 other countries this week, including the United States.

In Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, ATMs stopped working, according to the New York Times. About 80 miles away, workers were forced to manually monitor radiation at the old Chernobyl nuclear plant when their computers failed. Well-known businesses were affected such as the U.S. pharmaceutical company Merck and the chocolatiers at Cadbury.

A separate attack occurred late last month targeting members of the British parliament. Utah, which is home to one of the United States intelligence communitys largest data storage centers, is undoubtedly an international target.

According to figures from the Department of Justice, since 2016 there have been an average of 4,000 ransomware attacks a day thats a 300 percent year-to-year jump from 2015.

Many of these kinds of attacks are preventable if individuals and corporations follow what Hatch calls good cyber hygiene. His act would direct the National Institute of Standards and Technology to establish Internet security best practices.” The information would be continually updated, regularly reviewed and available to the public the standards are voluntary.

Skeptics might say that publicly publishing and producing safety guidelines only helps bad actors better understand how to get around cyber security. Yet, most experts say that many attacks are not particularly sophisticated and can be stopped by taking rudimentary safety precautions.

Some of these precautions include:

These are just some basic steps for guarding against attacks.

Its important that businesses, governments and individuals adopt and continually revise best practices as a way to both deter and deny malicious internet actors from profiting off of cyber vulnerabilities. Those who would never think to keep their door unlocked or ajar in a rough neighborhood don’t think twice about letting malicious hackers gain access to their private data.

Sen. Hatch anticipates bipartisan support for his bill, SB1475. This should be a priority for members of Congress. After all, ransomeware knows no partisan boundaries.

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In our opinion: Individuals and governments should do more to recognize and combat cyber attacks – Deseret News

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