Be cautious of cyber security threat, students warned

By Sharifah Nur Fatimah Alhadi binti Syed Md Nasser

GOMBAK, 17 December 2021: Living in a digital age, we have no option but to adapt to latest technologies where our professional and personal lives and finances have begun to gravitate into the realm of the internet, mobile computers and electronic media.

Due to the prevalence of this phenomenon, we are more exposed than ever to malicious attacks, invasions of privacy, fraud, and other such unpleasantries. The question is, how do we counter this?

Prof. Dr. Akram Mohammed Zeki Khedher from Kulliyyah of Information and Communication Technology (KICT) warned, “If you find anything malicious or doesn’t make sense and not related or you do not understand it, you must report it to the IT manager so that appropriate action could be taken.”

He was speaking to Communication practical training class during a webinar on “Information Security in the Work Environment: Issues, Challenges and Solutions”.

Dr. Akram revealed, “In Malaysia, we spend 9 hours 17 minutes everyday over the internet where many of our daily activities are in the digital form which indicates their significance.”

In this respect, he cautioned that awareness of information security is vital to ensure their safety online.

Selection of passwords and use of at least two authentications (passwords and biometrics), antivirus software, and firewalls would help prevent identity theft, hackers and viruses, he advised.

He further said that according to the global data collected, cyber crimes are now replacing traditional methods of crime and are predicted to hit $10.5 trillion annually by 2025.

“Regrettably, users and system managers tend not to see the benefits of security until a failure occurs.” Hence, Dr. Akram advised the participants that frequent monitoring on security is needed.

Nevertheless, information security is not as simple as it may look at first glance because security features are always vulnerable to attack.

He therefore called on the participants to ensure their social media profiles be set ‘private’ with no personal information sharing to the public.

Meanwhile, Asst. Prof. Dr. Sharyar Wani from KICT, who was also the speaker at the webinar, reminded the participants to always check their privacy settings.

He called on the participants when using the cloud, to separate work and personal devices, do backup continuously, delete sensitive information, and avoid public wireless networks.

Hosted by Nur ‘Aina Athirah Mahyuddin through Zoom platform, the webinar was attended by students from practical training class and lecturers including Head of Department of Communication, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zeti Azreen Ahmad and Internship coordinator, Asst. Prof. Dr. Nur Shakira Mohd Nasir. Also attended the event was Asst. Prof. Dr. Nurul Nuha Abdul Molok, the Siber Sejahtera Flagship Leader. ***

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