Cyberspace Q&A

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Cybersecurity is the security in the cyberspace. While cyberspace lives in the Internet, cyberspace is not the Internet. The Internet provides a framework for creating cyberspaces. In this post introduce cyberspace in a question-and-answer format.

Is it `Cybersecurity’ or `Cyber Security’?

NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) calls it Cybersecurity.

What is Cyberspace?

First the term was coined by two artists in the 1960s for a series of their art work, but now there are two conceptual views in the age of information.
Answer A: An imaginary view: It is the space that people use to stay virtually-connected with other people or services.  Also, services can stay in touch with other services. Moreover, services can communicate with people and vice verse.  Furthermore, service providers can track people.
Answer B: A technical view: It consists of computer-networks created with a combination of hardware, firmware, and software along with end-user devices. All communication goes through these networks. An end-user connects with people or services connected to the networks. Sometimes we call it the Internet.

What are the hardware that necessary to create the Internet?

A set of host computers working as a gateway to connect end-user devices. A set of routers, and a set of links. The links are used to connect the hosts, routers, and end-users. The links could be wire links, optical links, or radio links depending on the devices’ interfaces. A device may have interfaces for one or more link-types. For example, a WiFi router at home has wire and radio links.

What is firmware?

A firmware is a low-level program stored in a semi-permanent memory that assists hardware and software to communicate between them. By changing firmware nature and functions of hardware components can be changed.

Why should I be concerned about security in cyberspace?

Cyberspace is dangerous, because malicious actors larking in it to gather private personal information, including financial and medical information. Once they gather the information, they can steal money from your bank, or use your credit card.

Why it is not made safe to keep malicious users out?

Simple answer is, current cyberspace have to be kept compatible with legacy systems that evolved from computer network that had no security.  Only to a limited number of people from research labs and universities used have access to those networks. Unlike today, there were limited personal and private information. By design, it is not secure, because of the architecture used by the legacy system. Now, cyberspace is used for every conceivable applications and services, but for compatibility and convenience of everyone legacy architecture is continued. Ironically, that creates a heaven for all malicious actors.


What can I do to stay safe?

Follow the safety instructions your service providers specify. For services that require authentications and authorizations, such as username and password, make sure that you have a secure Internet connection before you start to sign-on. Also, keep your authentication information, including username and password, private.

How do I know my Internet connection is safe?

Look at the left-side of the browser bar, there is a lock symbol. It should be looking locked.


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