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Communications of the ACM


Cybersecurity Gets Smart

Cybersecurity Gets Smart, illustration

Credit: Military & Aerospace Electronics

Over the last decade, cybersecurity has careened into the danger zone. Corporations, governments and individuals increasingly have found themselves staring down the barrel of hacks, attacks, and breaches. What is more, as the intensity and frequency of these incidents grows—and far more sophisticated malware, social engineering, and state-sponsored cyberterrorism takes shape—researchers and other security experts are desperately searching for new and better ways to address threats. The traditional approach of using signature-based malware detection, heuristics, and tools such as firewalls and data loss prevention (DLP) simply is not getting the job done.

"We have entered a different era. As society digitizes everything of value, we create irresistible targets for people who want to engage in criminal activities," observes Bruce Daley, principal analyst at technology research and consulting firm Tractica and author of Where Data Is Wealth (Play Technologies, 2015). Today, Daley says, "We're seeing a level of ingenuity and sophistication from criminals that places even the most modern and sophisticated IT systems at risk."


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