The cyberse(cure)ity to hacking


Grant Dickerson

SAFE, NOT SORRY: An analysis of the computer is being performed to protect the server from attack.

Mihir Kulkarni, News Editor

Cybersecurity Awareness Month is an effort between the government and industry held every October to promote cognizant digital behavior as computer technology spreads to more aspects of life and the threat of cyberattacks increases. However, there are a myriad of resources available to help protect you on the web.

The Irvine Unified School District (IUSD) has begun implementing several new programs to help protect both its staff and students. These include new monitoring systems, end-user education and an enterprise-grade firewall. Improving cybersecurity to keep up with hackers is vital as they constantly find new ways to infiltrate networks.

“As with all internet-connected networks, we are constantly being scanned and probed,” IUSD systems administrator Ray Fabro said. “Phishing email attacks are a daily occurrence.”

Attacks like these compromise sensitive information that can be used maliciously. IUSD has also experienced distributed denial-of-service attacks, where the attacker attempts to shut down a network or device for a period of time. Even The Howler Online was hacked last year, forcing the website to temporarily shut down. However, there are clubs on campus to help prevent attacks.

“Cybersecurity Club aims to teach students various security measures they should take in order to keep their information safe online,” Cybersecurity Club presidents juniors Sydney Duong and Brian Yu said. “We also focus on securing Windows and Linux operating systems and teach the basics of computer networking.”

Along with teaching basic security measures at their meetings, Cybersecurity Club’s State of the Student workshop will put students into an “escape room” to solve puzzles relating to cryptography and encryption aspects of cybersecurity in order to break out. The club meets every Thursday in Room 1028.

Although Cybersecurity Awareness month only lasts for October, the threat of cyberattacks is ongoing. One should always examine emails carefully, update security software and change passwords periodically.

“Cybersecurity is a journey, and not just a set-it-and-forget process,” Fabro said. “No one person or team can handle all the security needs that are demanded today, so it’s going to take everyone’s willingness to want to be safe online and in IUSD in order for us to be successful.”