Prof. Steven Furnell, Centre for Security, Communications & Network Research, Plymouth University
As Internet threats continue to advance, there are clearly questions to be asked about our preparedness to cope with them … with past evidence suggesting that plenty of people are lined up to fall victim. While this is perhaps unsurprising if a completely new category of threat has appeared with little or no warning, many of the threats we face are arguably of a more known and potentially recognisable variety. Indeed, in many cases we are not dealing with a new threat, but rather a new context. This is typified by examples such as phishing and malware, where the underlying problem remains the same, but re-occurs in a new, unfamiliar, or unexpected guise, and thereby repeatedly manages to snare fresh victims.
This presentation will examine the situation, suggesting that part of the problem is our ongoing lack of appreciation of the threats themselves and why they occur.
Although we come to recognize specific threat contexts, such as the malware risk of unsolicited email attachments, we have not learnt the lessons generically enough and thus risk getting caught each time the attackers switch to a new avenue of exploitation.