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McAfee and Symantec Warn About the Dangers of the Internet

McAfee and Symantec have been the top names associated with protecting people online and their latest reports have some disturbing revelations. The companies claim that recently, they have noticed an exponential growth in cyber crime and judging by the trend, it will continue over the next few years. Although it is common knowledge that cyber crime is on the rise and internet is not as safe as it was a few years ago, the emphasis laid by these two companies on its growth is very disturbing news indeed.

It pushes us to think if we have let too much of internet into our lives and it has reached a point at which the internet can become our weakness and can be used against us. However, the fact of the matter is that there has been a lot of development for securing ourselves against online threats and the latest techniques will ensure that there is no need to press the panic button, at least not yet.

$110 Billion Spent By Symantec to Battle Cyber crime

Symantec’s quarterly report reveals some interesting details about how much budget  corporates allocate for fighting cyber crime. Over the past year or so, the company has spent around US $110 billion for fighting  crime. If we take into account the number of people who have been the victims of internet crime, then Symantec has invested almost $200 per victim in the year 2012.

The report also compiles an interesting stat about the amount of damages incurred due to cyber crime. Quantitatively, the damages due to internet crime alone are more than the damages caused by cocaine, heroin, marijuana and a few other drugs on the black market. This is an astonishing fact indeed and pushed us to consider t how less we know about cyber crime and its consequences.

Acid Test for Microsoft’s Windows Defender

Microsoft has been bragging about how its new operating system, the Windows 8, will have an onboard virus protection program and also its effectiveness. But the online security pros are not too excited about it and to quote an anonymous expert, that software ‘doesn’t tick all the right boxes’. What this means is the Windows Defender on the Windows 8 OS still leaves the users wanting for more as it has not covered all the bases. Online security is not just about getting the computer to stop cookies/tracking online. The technology available to us is so advanced that it is virtually impossible to stay ahead of all the malicious software that is in the cyber world today.

Over Dependency on the Internet

This statement from the top dogs of online security raises the concerns that most experts had a few years ago: are we depending too much on the internet? Before, internet meant computer and it ended at that. Today we have internet enabled mobile phones, tablets, music players, GPS trackers and a host of other devices. What this means is that all these devices are like homing beacons to hackers and they can pick targets at their will.

Is The Internet At its Most Dangerous Point?

The internet has always been dangerous and with every new technology that is developed,  hackers find a way to use it against us. It is true that cyber crime is growing exponentially and it will continue to grow as internet gets more intertwined with our lives. What we are forgetting is that with a little bit of caution from our side, we could have avoided most of these crimes. Most cyber crimes are because of the users’ fault more than the hackers’ ingenuity. So, it is too early to set the warning bells ringing. But the day is not too far unless we are more careful and discreet with the internet from now on.

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