One of the most exciting things about the world of computers is the fact that it is an area that is evolving all the time. In fact the only constant law that can be applied to computing is the fact that it is always changing.
Being human, we have a constant need to progress in all aspects of our lives but the realm of computing seems to attract more great minds than many other areas.
Thats good for business owners who are looking for improvements in productivity and its good for home consumers who want ever-improving devices at the same or lower prices than the outgoing tech.
One great example of how computing is always advancing is Moore’s Law.
This states that every year the power of CPU chips would double and for a great many years that hypotheses held true. Over time, the circuits on the silicon chips became smaller and smaller and CPU power progressed at a colossal rate. Later, the ability to shrink the circuits diminished and so we saw manufacturers approach the challenge of making faster devices from another angle which explains why multi-core chips are so common nowadays.
That, of course, is only one example of the fast-changing nature of computing – there are a great many others that I’m sure you can all think of.
But this advancement in the field of computing is not confined to hardware alone. If you are as ancient as me you will remember the very basic nature of Windows 3.1, or even the days before Windows – software has also come a long way in a very short period of time, though some may question whether some particular products are better than they were in the past!
All this change affects every aspect related to computing, and that means security too.
The constant evolution of computing means that, by and large, the tricks and attacks of yesterday are not relevant today. For instance, old malware is countered by security products and boot disk attacks have ceased to be popular because they are countered more easily these days. Not only that but the bad guys are more interested in money these days rather than just causing mischief.
And so other attacks became more prevalent as we saw a proliferation in cross site scripting attacks and phishing, both of which gained popularity due to the widespread use of the internet and the potential for criminals to make money from them.
But even those types of attack are waning, or at least being eclipsed, by other threats.
Large-scale data breaches, theft of company intellectual property and wide-scale surveillance from security agencies are appearing in the news more and more these days.
Which all goes to show that the latest, most threatening type of attack that concerns you right now will not remain so for ever.
Cyber criminals are evolving at just about the same pace as computer hardware and software. New technology breeds new threats and that is why you always need to stay on your toes. Even if you have 100% confidence in your security measures today, it doesn’t mean that you will be safe tomorrow.
They say that the only certainties in life are death and taxes but thats not true – the other certainty is that a new type of attack vector will always be coming.
Thats why you should never rest on your laurels.
You should always ensure that your personal and business machines and networks are fully patched and secured but you should never think that the job is finished.
Securing devices and information is not a proactive task; it is, by definition, reactive.
That is why you need to ensure that you stay up to date on the latest computer technology as well as the newest types of attacks too. Whatever your interest in computing, you need to be informed in order to keep the bad guys at bay.