The Universal Concerns Impacting the International Cybersecurity Community [Weekly Cybersecurity Brief]

As I have written about before, such as in my chapter for “Fight Fire with Fire: Proactive Cybersecurity Strategies for Today’s Leaders,” there is a pressing need to diversify the cybersecurity field. Like many others facing the industry, this issue is not unique to the United States. With each new event, it becomes more and more apparent that concerns surrounding cybersecurity are increasingly universal. This week, we focus on some of the cybersecurity worries shared by the international community.

We begin with the topic of diversity and inclusion. ENISA, the EU’s transnational cybersecurity agency, recently released a report that dives into the gaps plaguing the region’s industry. Among them is the uneven gender balance. The report outlines that, although the number of graduates is expected to double, only about 20% of them are women. To increase this percentage, the report suggests investing in scholarships aimed at underrepresented demographics. The other problem presented by the ENISA, like what we have covered regarding the U.S. market, is a skills shortage. The report states, “The number of skilled and qualified workers is not enough to meet the demand, and national labour markets are disrupted worldwide, Europe included, as a consequence.” To address this, ENISA offers solutions like expanding cybersecurity programs, forming a common framework for such studies, and providing training in more languages.

While cybersecurity talent is a concern shared across waters, so is the growing presence of cyberattacks. In an article for TechWire Asia, Rebecca Oi describes the challenges impacting ASEAN (The Association of Southeast Asian Nations) businesses. The increase in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in countries like Indonesia, Vietnam, and Malaysia, has become a target for cyber criminals interested in taking advantage of vulnerabilities such as minimal resources and weaknesses in security infrastructure. According to the article, cyberattacks on these ASEAN companies are predicted to continue rising over the next few years. 

This trend coincides with the overall surge in cybercrime, which has become a major global threat. In an Interpol operation focused on online fraud that just unfolded, international police from 20 countries made arrest of 1,003 people and intercepted $27 million in illicit funds, as reported by CyberScoop. The operation, known as “Operation HAECHI-II,” ran from June to September and tracked activities such as investment fraud, a business email compromise scheme in Colombia and a malware campaign that referenced the Netflix show “Squid Game.” As Tim Starks, the author of the article, writes, “Interpol said the crackdown demonstrated how cybercrime has risen to new levels since the outbreak of the coronavirus. It’s the latest international warning about how the pandemic has fueled a crime wave.”

Key Takeaways:

“Cybersecurity graduates are doubling, but that’s still not going to fix the skills crisis” – Liam Tung, ZDNet

https://www.zdnet.com/article/cybersecurity-graduates-are-doubling-but-thats-still-not-going-to-fix-the-skills-crisis/

  • ENISA, the EU’s transnational cybersecurity agency, recently released a report that dives into the gaps plaguing the region’s industry.
  • Although the number of graduates is expected to double, only about 20% of them are women.
  • The other problem presented by the ENISA is a cybersecurity skills shortage.

“Cybersecurity is still challenging for ASEAN businesses” – Rebecca Oi, TechWire Asia

https://techwireasia.com/2021/11/cybersecurity-are-challenging-asean-businesses/

  • The increase in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in countries like Indonesia, Vietnam, and Malaysia, has become a target for cyber criminals.
  • They are interested in taking advantage of vulnerabilities such as minimal resources and weaknesses in security infrastructure.
  • According to the article, cyberattacks on these ASEAN companies are predicted to continue rising over the next few years. 

“Months-long Interpol crackdown nets more than 1,000 online fraud arrests” – Tim Starks, CyberScoop

https://www.cyberscoop.com/interpol-1000-arrests-netflix-squid-game/

  • In an Interpol operation focused on online fraud that just unfolded, international police from 20 countries made arrest of 1,003 people and intercepted $27 million in illicit funds.
  • The operation, known as “Operation HAECHI-II,” ran from June to September and tracked activities such as investment fraud, a business email compromise scheme in Colombia and a malware campaign that referenced the Netflix show “Squid Game.”
  • The operation is reflective of the growth in cybercrime that has occurred over the course of the pandemic.
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