Page 6 - Cybersecurity Career Guide for Alexandria College
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what is cybersecurity?
Protecting Our Personal Space
You rely on those high-fidelity headphones to keep you in the zone.
Can you imagine them weaponized to imperceptibly damage your brain over time or instantly drive you crazy with pain? Cyber researchers are warning that this could happen. We’ve long known that headphones and other speakers are able to emit frequencies out of the range of human hearing. But a cybersecurity research team warns it’s surprisingly easy to write custom malware to cause speakers and headphones to emit high-intensity, inaudible frequencies or suddenly blast out audible sounds at high volume. Hearing loss, tinnitus (a persistent ringing in the ears), and damaging psychological effects could be inflicted on whole populations. At the very least, this malware could fry your headphones and speakers, setting you back more than a few bucks.
   Foiling Pirates
 We’re not talking Blackbeard with his cutlass or even modern-day marauders with assault rifles. Today’s tech-savvy pirates hack into the GPS systems of cargo ships as they sail the ocean blue, taking over command from the captains. Malware can affect command-and-control systems to disrupt shipping of major commodities (such as grain and other foodstuffs) or hold ships for ransom, and
even use captured ships to engage in cyber spying. Fully 90% of the world’s trade is transported by sea, and ships that carry that cargo— worth billions—are vulnerable
to cyberattack. In 2016, A.P.
Moeller Maersk, the world’s
biggest container shipping line
and operator of 76 seaports worldwide,
was hit with a computer virus that shut
down operations across the globe, blocking
normal operations at multiple ports for weeks.
Los Angeles, the busiest port in the U.S., was stalled
for days, with ships unable to off-load goods. As a result,
not only oil transport but also oil production was affected—
without ships to load in port, oil fields had to shut down. Luckily,
this was temporary. But as a result, the shipping industry must adopt ever more advanced
technology to protect itself against the increasing variety of attacks by cyber pirates. Having all hands on deck in cyberspace to fend off a serious attack is vital for the shipping industry’s continued success.

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