Attend IT Limited Blog

Cybersecurity Throughout History

Cybersecurity Throughout History

The way a business approaches its network security is a crucial consideration - especially to a business that is planning to have a future. This has contributed to cybersecurity becoming a multi-hundred-billion-dollar (per year) industry. In its short history, cybersecurity has had a huge impact on businesses, so we felt it would be useful to go through some of the highlights of its deployment.

What’s the Status of Today’s Cybersecurity Industry?

At the time of this writing, cybercrime certainly does pay… it takes in at least $1.5 trillion in profits per year, and that number is still growing. Some projections anticipate it causing $6 trillion in yearly damages by the time 2021 rolls around. The cybercrime industry is worth $200 billion per year, and there’s been a 67 percent increase in security breaches over the span of the last five years.

Phishing has grown in popularity to reach the top spot, targeting approximately 76 percent of all businesses. Phishing is a multi-purpose attack vector for cybercriminals, delivering ransomware or other types of malware, tricking the target into handing over sensitive data, or stealing credentials that allow them to access your data at their leisure. Making it an even worse threat, many who have been phished successfully don’t realize it until the ramifications set in. These attacks are responsible for the exposure, theft, or corruption of billions of records annually.

It should be pretty clear at this point why businesses need to be concerned about cybercrime.

However, cybercrime wasn’t always as huge of an issue as it is now.

Cybercrime’s Origins

Believe it or not, the global threat that costs economies trillions each year was once a simple research project. An individual named Bob Thomas realized that a computer program could potentially be able to travel across a computer network, leaving a trail behind. He designed a computer code that he nicknamed “Creeper.” The aptly named Creeper was meant to traverse the ARPANET, moving from Tenex terminal to Tenex terminal, carrying its message:


When Ray Tomlinson - the inventor of email - took notice of it, he created what was effectively the first-ever computer worm. He then wrote another code, named “Reaper,” which hunted down Creeper and deleted it - effectively inventing antivirus.

Leveraged By Criminals

Cybercrime was once much different than what can be observed today. In the 1980s, Soviet hackers considered the benign applications that academics had designed, and speculated the same concept could be used to infiltrate other networks. By 1986, a German hacker named Marcus Hess successfully hacked into an Internet gateway that the University of California at Berkeley hosted. With this connection, he had reached the ARPANET. He ended up hacking a total of 400 computers, including some Pentagon mainframes, and planned to sell the secrets he had absconded with to the Soviet Committee for State Security, which translates to Komitet Gosudarstvennoy Bezopasnosti... otherwise known as the KGB. Through cooperation between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the government of West Germany, Hess was caught, and became the first to be convicted of a cybercrime. He was handed down a 20-month suspended sentence.

This just so happened to coincide with an increase in both connectivity and the severity of viruses, making the threat that a virus could pose much more considerable.

Cybersecurity Software’s Development

In 1988, software engineer Robert Morris tried to measure the Internet, but it didn’t exactly work out that way. His plan was to write a program that would spread to different networks, infiltrating Unix terminals, and replicate itself. The problem is, the “replication” aspect was so efficient, it slowed down the entire Internet and had serious ramifications. “The Morris Worm,” as it came to be known, was the reason that the Computer Emergency Response Team was formed (you may know it by its modern name: CERT). Now a professor at MIT, Morris has the distinction of being the first person convicted under the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA).

After the Morris Worm had been taken care of, the development of viruses exploded… and the antivirus industry followed suit. When the Internet could first be found in the home in the mid-1990s, there were dozens of antivirus solutions. These solutions would reference a database of virus code signatures, testing a computer’s binaries against it - potentially identifying major issues.

Malware’s Renaissance

As the mid-nineties rolled around, the Internet had just a few thousand known viruses on it Come 2007, there were about five million different strains of malware, from worms to viruses to Trojans and many, many more. 500,000 different malware strains were being created on a daily basis by 2014.

Security solutions needed to improve, as the antivirus that so many relied upon were unable to scan for malware quickly enough. Fortunately, new methods arose. There were endpoint protection platforms (EEP), which would scan for similarities between malware families, rather than specific file types. This was effective because a single idea often spawns many examples of malware, so the EEP approach is a simple way to identify threats in code.


Malware continued to advance, and once it started using additional tools to overcome endpoint protection, another solution was needed. This became abundantly clear when the WannaCry ransomware used a previously patched (and seemingly largely neglected) security flaw to encrypt its targets’ data, forcing them to pay a ransom in Bitcoin in order to access it.
This made it very clear to industry professionals that playing catchup wasn’t an effective strategy anymore, and that they had to at least match the pace of cybercriminals. This meant that threats needed to be easier to detect on the network, which called for increased transparency. To accomplish this, endpoint threat detection and response (EDR) services became popular as a means of proactively monitoring networks and resources. This is the cutting edge, and where we stand today.

Attend IT Limited can help you manage your cybersecurity solutions, protecting your network and the business it supports. To learn more, call us at 020 8626 4485 today.

Have You Considered the Cloud for Your Business?
Expansion of Remote Work


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Tuesday, February 18 2020

Captcha Image

Mobile? Grab this Article!

Qr Code

Tag Cloud

Security Network Security Technology Business Computing Tip of the Week Cloud Best Practices Managed IT Services Hosted Solutions Privacy Malware Disaster Recovery Data Recovery Hackers communications Productivity Data Backup Outsourced IT Backup Data Business Innovation IT Services Cloud Computing Productivity Software Cybersecurity Mobile Devices Email IT Support Computer VoIP Business Continuity Small Business Saving Money Internet of Things Business Management Hardware Efficiency Internet IT Support Upgrade Microsoft Managed IT Automation Managed IT services Information Technology Server Mobile Device Management Smartphone Phishing Collaboration BDR Mobility Risk Management Windows 7 Budget Artificial Intelligence Avoiding Downtime Save Money BYOD Cost Management Hosted Solution Virtual Private Network Communication Password Data Management Remote Computing Network Spam Compliance Ransomware User Tips Firewall Managed Service Provider History Gadgets Quick Tips Smartphones Hybrid Cloud Hard Drives Conferencing Business Technology MSP Value Audit Workplace Tips Remote Workers Solid State Drive Printing Saving Time Automobile Data Breach Redundancy Data Security Personal Information Tech Term Windows 10 Passwords Computers Networking Android Recovery Telephone Systems Router Marketing IT Service Document Management Paperless Office Manufacturing Managed Service Content Filtering Devices iPhone Computer Repair Lifestyle Meetings Save Time Smart Technology Cybersecurty Travel VPN Management Printers Project Management Students Utility Computing Two-factor Authentication Windows 10 Cybercrime SMB Active Directory Transportation Smart Tech Vendor HIPAA Training Windows Server 2008 Google Encryption Electronic Medical Records Facebook Development Microsoft Office Operating System Break/Fix Window 10 Software as a Service Spyware The Internet of Things Virtualization IoT Proactive IT Private Cloud Downtime Social Media Financial Technology Mobile Computing Applications Unified Communications Advertising Windows Server Commerce Going Green Connectivity Employee-Employer Relationship Employees Update Help Desk Upgrades WPA3 Telephony Online Storage Apple Shadow IT Big Data Legal Business Intelligence Wasting Money E-Commerce Copiers intranet Remote Monitoring Human Resources Instant Messaging Evernote Streaming Media Wireless Internet Administration File Storage Antivirus Customer Relationship Management User Error Dark Web Wireless Technology App Computing Amazon Payment Cards Word Browser Voiceover Internet Protocol Payroll Machine Learning Mobile Content Filter Gamification Education Cleaning Colocation Social Engineering Bandwidth Holiday Government Voice over Internet Protocol Data Loss Money SaaS Managed IT Service Analysis Virtual Assistant Work/Life Balance Employer-Employee Relationship Vulnerability Regulation Business Telephone Mobile Device OneNote Hacking Black Market Professional Services Workers Monitoring Phone System Nanotechnology Application Hacker Azure Data Protection Chromebook Entertainment Samsung e-waste Fiber Optics Disaster End of Support Flexibility Mobile Office Proactive Alexa for Business Office 365 Backup and Disaster Recovery Music Video Games Smartwatch Identities Text Messaging Updates IT solutions Patch Management Users Root Cause Analysis Battery Adobe Wireless Charging IT Management Reputation YouTube Microsoft Excel Gmail Wasting Time Scalability CRM Websites Unified Threat Management Screen Mirroring Mobile Security Information Wi-Fi Computer Accessories Analytics Health Server Maintenance Inventory Legislation Settings Office Tips Myths Tablets Microsoft Word Windows 10s Outlook File Sharing Augmented Reality Keyboard Shortcuts Point of Sale WannaCry Company Culture Holidays Google Drive PowerPoint Accessory Safety Internet Exlporer Keyboard Gifts Data Theft Cast Identity HaaS 5G Tech Support Computer Fan Windows Investment Communitications Comparison Language Business Strategy Identity Theft Office Threats NFL Maintenance Hard Disk Drive Shortcut Chrome Display Storage Alert Security Cameras Processor Licensing Testing Politics Charger Social OneDrive Peripheral Managing Stress Emergency Humor Micrsosoft Consultant Data Privacy Vendor Management Medical IT Fraud USB Books Search ROI Hosted Desktop Specifications Worker Commute Scam Scams eWaste Excel Google Assistant Co-Managed Services Sabotage Sports IT budget Television CrashOverride Financial PDF Best Practice Benchmarks Emails IT Solutions Robot Camera Experience Wireless Access Control How To Digital Signage Credit Cards HBO Hard Drive eCommerce Edge Computer Care Telephone Virtual Reality Windows Server 2008 R2 Smart Devices Sales Virus Employee Managed Services Provider Windows Ink Device Security Twitter PC Cortana Blockchain Bring Your Own Device Apps Webinar WIndows Server 2008 Projects Relocation Unsupported Software Miscellaneous Memory Admin Worker Current Events FAQ Touchscreen Law Enforcement Google Docs Ciminal Computer Forensics Hyperlink Troubleshooting Retail WiFi Data Storage App store Facebook Privacy Google Maps iOS Sync