Although most people wouldn’t argue that staying safe online is a bad idea, many of us perceive cybersecurity as complicated and time-consuming. The National Cybersecurity Alliance want to challenge that perception and remind us that ‘it’s easy to stay safe online’.
Launched in 2004 and thus marking 20 years of maintaining digital security, National Cybersecurity Awareness Month aims to raise awareness around cybersecurity, and empower us all to keep ourselves protected online. The theme for 2023 is ‘it’s easy to stay safe online,’ and highlights the simple changes we can make to ensure that we are not leaving ourselves susceptible to online cyber-attacks.
Cryptosystems have been developed to send secure messages with the assumption that the receiver’s key – what the intended recipient needs to read the message – is secure from adversaries. An international team led by Professor Moti Yung at the Privacy, Security, and Safety Research Group at Google LLC and at Columbia University, USA, has conceptualised ‘anamorphic’ cryptography so that even if the keys are known to the adversary, pre-existing cryptographic systems can nevertheless directly transfer secure messages.
Back in May 2017, a huge cyberattack crippled several of the largest digital networks in the UK and US, paralysing over two hundred thousand computers. To combat such threats Dimitrios Pezaros, Senior Lecturer at the University of Glasgow, and David Hutchison, Distinguished Professor of Computing at Lancaster University, launched SAI2 (A Situation-Aware Information Infrastructure), a research project aimed at developing new technologies to fight against cyber threats.
The demand for secure network communication is increasing as online fraud and cybercrime pose threats to users’ security and data confidentiality. Awais Khan, Dr Junaid ur Rehman, and Professor Hyundong Shin, from the Kyung Hee University, Korea, have developed two key protocols for quantum anonymous network communication: the quantum anonymous collision detection (QACD) protocol and quantum anonymous notification (QAN) protocol. Their research paves the way for secure quantum anonymous communication across quantum networks.
Encryption systems that are capable of surviving quantum computer attacks are urgently required, but the cybersecurity talent gap militates against securing cyberinfrastructure. Dr Aydin Aysu, Assistant Professor at North Carolina State University, is advancing the research and teaching of post-quantum secure encryption. He has developed a quantum-secure encryption system together with a new graduate program on hardware security and is currently developing design automation for lattice-based post-quantum cryptosystems.
Digital and communication technologies have revolutionised humanity; however, cyber-attacks pose a constant threat that transcends national boundaries. As such, collaborative international approaches to cybersecurity are needed. Cybersecurity has traditionally been a male-dominated field. However, at Cardiff Metropolitan University in the UK, Dr Liqaa Nawaf and her colleagues have established a new, British Council-funded initiative to promote improved gender equality in this field.