Data breaches have become so commonplace that we almost expect them.
Credit cards are compromised when retail stores are hacked. Social Security numbers are at risk when government agencies or physician’s offices fall prey to phishing expeditions.
And those are just the perils the average American faces with domestic hackers. It’s just as easy for people from far-flung countries – some of whom may be working on the behest of their governments – to infiltrate our computer systems and disrupt our way of life.
The Internet is taking down the borders around countries all over the world. This year, the federal Office of Personnel Management was hacked, putting the data of more than 22 million Americans at risk. That hack reportedly originated in China. In another case, four people were arrested this summer in Israel and Florida in connection with fraud schemes related to a 2014 hack of JPMorgan Chase & Co.
Meanwhile, The Wall Street Journal just recently reported that 29 countries have formal military or intelligence units dedicated to offensive hacking efforts.
It’s scary what the possibilities are, because this isn’t quite the same as securing our borders against a military attack. Not every country has a powerful military, but it’s so much easier to wage a cyber war.
Here are several reasons why this can be a concern for everyone.