In the technological landscape of cyber threats, cyber spies, and hacktivism, the internet is changing. It’s been changing for some time. Liberties and freedoms never known to man are now available with a keystroke. There is a limitless amount of information, both good and bad, dangerous and benign. Business moves at lightspeed, communication circles the globe within seconds, data is being created by the terabyte – faster than you can blink.
Our new plane of existence is the internet.
The internet is more than communication, more than information. It has irrevocably changed the world. We are connected more than ever before. People on the other side of the planet are no longer far off, faceless strangers. We’re connected. This has changed the way we shop, the way we work, the way we learn. I’d like to think that it has changed the way we see the world.
The internet has taken the power from media outlets.
This is fact. Blogging and social media open up otherwise closed doors. No matter your opinion, the great thing about the internet is you can have an opinion, and it can be heard.
In a world driven by technology, the internet is the true birth of a global economy.
Knowledge is power. The internet is full of it. People are increasing their skills, and in turn, using these skills to work for themselves. This is helping fuel an online economy that transcends borders, and levels the playing field. The proof is in the headlines:
- Where America’s Real Job Growth Is Happening (Daily Finance)
- Why Freelance Jobs Are Hotter Than Ever (USNews & World Report)
- More Pinoys Turn To Online Freelance Jobs (Manila Standard Today)
Even Elance is bragging about what it’s putting in the bank.
Turning Back The Clock
Cyber threats are becoming more prevalent for the simple fact that we are spending more time online, and more of us are doing it. The world has transitioned to becoming an information-based, data driven society. There is no cyber “boogeyman”. When you move shopping, banking, communication, and work online, it’s only natural that everything else follows – including crime, terror, activism, and government action.
This infographic spells out how dramatically internet use has risen. (Click to see full infographic)
As you can see, there are simply more of us using the internet. We’re working, learning, sharing, and connecting. There is crime, controversy, threats, and sabotage – just like the real (offline) world.
The internet has become a cyber planet. Think of it like The Sims. But on steroids.
Cyber Threats You Hear So Much About (And Some Not So Much)
By now, most of us have heard of groups like Anonymous or the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Cyber Fighters. They’ve ravaged banks and businesses with DDoS attacks, defaced websites, and compromised databases. They’re enough of a concern to still be around, and that speaks volumes.
This is the one we tend to hear more about every day. Money motivated cyber thieves are constantly at work, perfecting attacks to precision.
I almost hate using that word. It’s thrown around quite a bit these days, but in this case, it’s looks that way. Eugene Kaspersky from Kaspersky Labs seems to think so, too. The internet is swarming with bad actors: shady types from all ends of the earth. And there is some scary malware out there.
Surprised? This is an odd one to throw in here. It bears mentioning, if only for the sake of controversy.
You see, the United States wants a cyber army. The Pentagon approved a plan earlier this year to expand the military’s cyber security force. The plan will expand the already 900 members, to a whopping 4,900 troops and civilians. There are threats, interests to protect. And China is doing it, too.
This hasn’t stopped privacy advocates from speaking up.
This is all starting to sound like a bad sci-fi movie. Oh… Let’s not forget the drones.