Tag: security

Staying Safe On The Internet: Easy Steps To Follow

how to ensure online security

The internet is home to billions of users coming from all walks in life in all parts of the world. The reality is we can never really distinguish the good guys from the bad guys through a mere online conversation on the web. We will never really know who is truly behind the computer screens. We will never find out whoever looks into the information we post online and traces we leave behind in the virtual world.

With all of this mind, it is never wrong to be extra careful when it comes to using the internet. We post hundreds of very personal information which may be used against us. Hence, we must follow safety measures to amplify online security. After all, it is much better to be safe than sorry.

Install firewall and antivirus software.

Your firewall and antivirus software will serve as a barrier that will protect you against online threats. That said, you need to keep these up to date since using an outdated software may become useless as it would not be able to protect you from current and advanced online dangers.

Invest in a good virtual private network.

As we all know, virtual private networks will help secure our online activities. However, not all VPNs are reliable or trustworthy. For instance, there may be a lot of free VPN in Taiwan which usually provide poor services. The same rule applies anywhere else; any VPN service provider that is free of charge is usually too good to be true. Needless to say, you must pay for quality.

online shopping safety

Avoid websites that are not secured.

You will know when websites are not secured once you check out the address bar. When the link of the site you are entering does not have a padlock symbol; that site may be dangerous. It only means that the site is not protected and any information you entered on that site may not be safe.

Do online shopping only at reputable websites.

Online shopping is very common these days; many of which makes use of credit cards for online payments. This is crucial as these sites require you to enter your card information; thus, make sure you only shop at reputable sites. Look into reviews first before online shopping so as to void online shopping scams.

Customize the security settings of your social media accounts.

For every social media account you have, take the time to make it as private and secured as possible. Online hackers are ruthless these days and so, extra safety measures must be employed to ensure online security.

Be cautious when clicking links.

The problem with links is that they all look the same in the eyes of typical internet users who are not so wary. Many links tossed around online are phishing links; these are links that disguise themselves as legitimate website links but in reality, they work by obtaining information from your end. Hence, think before you click. Otherwise, the internet lurkers might get a hold of your private information.


Wireless DAQ to Change Security Data Acquisition


Wireless control is becoming standard in a wide range of devices, from simple garage doors and car keys to life saving medical devices. The potential danger behind the radio controlled gadgets resides in their vulnerability to cyber attacks and potential misuse, which can do more harm than good to the unsuspecting victim.

Medical wireless sensors are expected to send information to a hub which converts it to a predefined form and stores it in a computer for further analysis. Sometimes the sensor has an attached processor which shortens the route and sends already processed info. The problem with such devices resides in the balance between size, usability and security. A study from 2011 clearly states this problem:

“ […] traditional security mechanisms needed unlimited resources, so they cannot be directly applied to the extremely resource-constrained sensor nodes. While WMSNs’ security requirements are the same as those of traditional networks, namely availability, confidentiality, integrity, authentication, data freshness and non-repudiations, thus resource conscious security protocols have emerged as one of the critical issue in healthcare applications using wireless medical sensor networks.”

Most research on these devices has been focused on enhancing the features, without too much concern about malicious use or eavesdropping. Recent tests and events have uncovered potential life and reputation threatening problems with insufficiently secured wireless capable gadgets.

It has been shown that wireless mice could act as access gates into computers through their dongle which can be easily hijacked and used as an external keyboard by a hacker. This is exactly what gave a programmer, Christian Rouland a bright idea to test security:

“No one was looking at the air space. So I wanted to build this cyber x-ray vision to be able to see what was inside a corporation’s air space versus what was just plugged into the wired network or what was on a Wifi hotspot.”

data based scienceIn the same manner, a medical wireless device could be hacked and the information downloaded and either changed, endangering the life of the patient (such as in the case of a pacemaker or an insulin pump) or released to whoever might be concerned such as insurance brokers, television stations if the person is a public figure or even the employer.

This is a risk most patients are not warned about, as medical staff is usually only telling them the secondary effects of treatments, not of being subject to potential technology attacks. Research shows that:

“Cyber actors will likely increase cyber intrusions against health care systems – to include medical devices – due to mandatory transition from paper to electronic health records (EHR), lax cybersecurity standards, and a higher financial payout for medical records in the black market.

Recognition of the increasing vulnerability of medical networks, as well as medical devices connected to these networks, is reflected in the revisions to the international standard International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/IEC 27000-series.”

The future solutions will require increased security options, integrated in a device that has cyber options similar to laptops and desktops. At least standard WEP and WPA security is required and as technology makes further steps medical devices should keep up, imposing similar standards to those offered by banks, since the sensitivity of the information is similar or higher.  When asked by available options at the moment, a company providing Wireless DAQ – explained that their device can connect to multiple sensors and experiments at the same time and store all the gathered data locally on the device. This minimizes the risk of data getting on the wrong hands, but caution is still advisable. They claim that in this case, the security is as strong as the network and wireless infrastructure existing in the facility where the device is installed.

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