Internet

How Much Has Online Security Advanced Over Time?

Just in less than half a century, information security that is reliant on technology has advanced immensely. The race of the development of technology for the betterment of security started as back as in the 1960s. In this time frame, the development of security, especially online security, has shown no bounds.

In the last decade, many of the tech giants such as Microsoft, Google, and Yahoo have been attacked by hackers relentlessly. The need to improve online security has been proved in various occasions where ransomware and viruses have shown evolution and advancement as well, resulting in dangerous threats. Online security is no more a joke, and software such as antiviruses have been introduced to keep the sensitive files safe and secure. However, even then, the online attacks are sometimes too strong for the antiviruses to prevent. Therefore, the advancement of online security overtime was more of a necessity than a luxury.

There are many online security measures implemented at present. Some of these include strong passwords, multiple verifications, firewalls, and the use of a VPN. At present, Cooltechzone studies and highlights the best VPN services which help to keep your system undetected and secure.

Given below is a detailed look at the advancement of online security with time.

Password Protection in the 1960s

The first initiation to protect the data of organizations which contained sensitive document was in the 1960s. Even though the internet was already discovered back then, it was still off bounds for people. Therefore, physical security with the slightest implementation of technology was introduced. Not many people were aware of the functions of a computer as well. For those who were, simple security protection was used in multiple layers. This resulted in the formation of codes or unique access digits that were termed as passwords. This ensured that the stored data was accessible by the only few who knew what the password was. Also, the devices were protected against fire safety and burglary safety measures. This was required so that the devices themselves do not get stolen or damaged.

CREEPER to Reaper in the 1970s

In the 1970s, a research project known as the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network or ARPANET was started. This began the history of online security. Bob Thomas, a researcher, created the program CREEPER, which could move the network of ARPANET and left out a small trail after the transfer. When the removal was complete, the CREEPER displayed the message – ‘I’M THE CREEPER: CATCH ME IF YOU CAN.’

Ray Tomlinson, the inventor of email, modified CREEPER and made it a menace. At that point, CREEPER was the first computer worm designed, and it was a headache to the organizations because of its self-replicating nature. As a countermeasure, he also created the program that could delete CREEPER and named it Reaper. Reaper was one of the first examples of antivirus software.

With this research, the real flaw of the ARPANET network came out, and the need for increasing the security of the network was pointed out by the various organizations. At that time, most governments were working on the creation of individual networks for connecting telephones to computers. These lines were tapped, and the data transferred was attempted to be stolen via the first example of hackers.

Internet Goes Mad in the 1980s

By the start of the 1980s, computer connectivity had increased drastically. At the same time, various types of new and advanced computer viruses emerged, as well. The innovation at hacking was more than the change at security at a point, which kept the information keeping organizations in an awful state.

The Cold War between the former USSR and the USA was going on at this point, and each deployed hackers to steal government secrets of the other. In 1988, Morris Worm came into existence. This can be said to be a landmark in online security history. Robert Morris designed the worm, and it was a bug creating, self-replicating, and infiltrating type of worm. As a result, data transferred across various networks could be accessed. By 1989, ARPANET was widely known as the internet, and public access to the internet was provided with the name of the Worldwide Web at that point.

The damage caused by Morris Worm was extensive. It slowed down the internet, and sometimes the computers were unusable. As a result, the Computer Fraud and Misuse Act were filed for the first time against Robert Morris. As a countermeasure, the Computer Emergency Response Team or CERT was formed.

Formation of Firewalls in the 1990s

By 1995, the online security threats were in vast amounts, and simple antivirus programs were not enough anymore. A researcher did the introduction of Firewalls at NASA at this point. The name firewall came from the model used in buildings that prevent the spreading of fires. Virtual firewalls were created at this point, which proved to be very helpful in stopping the spread of a virus. However, this measure was short-lived, as more and more advanced viruses were developed.

Proper Steps Taken in the 2000s

By 2000, hacking was considered to be a severe criminal offense. The ones caught were charged with huge fines and long jail terms. With more and more advancement of technology, the 2000s saw a significant upgrade in the security levels. The viruses were also getting advanced in par. However, the focus was more on antivirus software and strengthening online security. As a result, the hacking increased at first, but slowly and steadily decreased as well.

Major Breaches in the 2010s

In the 2010s, the concept of hacking became even more complicated. As a result, a lot of significant breaches of sensitive data were seen in this period. Some of them are-

  • NSA & Edward Snowden (2013) – Snowden was a former employee of CIA who leaked sensitive information about the NSA or National Security Agency. His leaks were mainly based on the fact as to how the public was always under scanner by the government, and there was nothing private. Snowden is called as traitors by some and hero by others.
  • Yahoo (2014) – The information of more than three billion users was jeopardized when a group of hackers attacked Yahoo. Yahoo disclosed this matter much late, which resulted in a fine of 35 million dollars.
  • WannaCry (2017) – WannaCry was a ransomware-type worm that infected Microsoft computers and stole the data of the users or corrupted it. The users were asked to pay a ransom in cryptocurrency to reaccess the data, especially in Bitcoin.

Even though these breaches were alarming, due to the presence of many reliable companies that provide a solution to such matters, the conditions were never out of control. VPN or Very Private Networks were also introduced, which enables the user to be able to stay undetected and safe from various attacks. The VPN services of Cooltechzone provide users with a lot of options.

Nowadays, online security measures also include the implementation of NBA or Network Behavioral Analysis, DoS or Denial of Service and WAF, or Web Application Firewalls protection.

Conclusion

Even though online security has advanced quite impressively over time, the general people need to be aware of the surroundings and increase the security on a personal level as well. When you are cautious, the chances of doing fraud against you automatically become less. As long as technology will be advanced, both security measures and viruses will get advanced as well. So, even though the hackers are coming up with something new, rest assured that even stronger security measures will get introduced to keep everything in check.

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