Stronger Cybersecurity Laws Required to Prevent Major Security Incidents

“As we become an increasingly digitally connected world, the loss of privacy and security are almost inevitable. But if we don’t adopt stronger data security laws,” said professor Woodrow Hartzog, “we might be left with a digital landscape that could be marred by chaos and deregulation.”

Data Breach Aftermat

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After Marriott’s exposure of 500 million guests and Quora’s compromise of 100 million user accounts,  a major concern of Americans is how secure are their identities when hackers already have stolen their personal information.

Importance of Cybersecurity

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Woodrow Hartzog is a professor at the
Northeastern University that teaches law and computer science.  He picture a dystopia view of the world that could debilitate our entire data ecosystem unless safeguarding American’s data security becomes a priority.

“If people lose the ability to trust those who are collecting our data then ultimately we’ll all lose, because we’ll lose the promise of the data ecosystem; we’ll lose out on the potential of artificial intelligence and other benefits to be gained from these information technologies,” Hartzog said.

Hackers Profit Off Personal Information

Massive data breaches from companies like Marriott, Yahoo and Google Plus reveals personal information of customers that trust these businesses to secure their data.

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Hackers infiltrate businesses, looking for security vulnerabilities.  They are after personal data such as full names, email addresses, home addresses, phone numbers, and any other information to turn their scam into cash.   

“If you sell a large set of email addresses, along with names or other personal information, that’s like a treasure trove for spammers,” said Lu, an assistant professor in the College of Computer and Information Science. “Not only do they know what are the valid email addresses that they can send to, but they also have some basic information they can use to better target these email address owners.”

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Companies can help their customers to 
protect their personal data by recommending to regularly change their online passwords and monitor their bank and credit reports. Ultimately, it is the companies responsiblity to gaurd their customers’ data.  Best practices include securing all systems and have employees complete acybersecurity awareness training program.

“By far, collectively, the most important thing that we can all do is make data security a political issue,” Hartzog said. “We can ask candidates that are running for office what their plan is to help create better data security rules. We should care because as a matter of civic participation, our data security depends upon our civic participation in the system.”

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Original Article Found Here.

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