June 21, 2017 - ERIE, Pa - Cyber security is a rapidly growing field in which anyone is vulnerable. A special training course brought a wide variety of people together... from folks in finance, to retail, and even government.
Data breaches, vulnerabilities on devices and applications, and cyber attacks happen nearly daily. These hackers are targeting anyone and everyone.
The Ridge College of Intelligence Studies at Mercyhurst University and the National Cyber-Forensics and Training Alliance joined together to host a 3-day training course.
"[We're teaching how to] Identify what's going on in this whole underground economy. And we're basically training them on how to get out there, how to do it, and how to do it safely," said Steve Mancini, Chief Technical Officer of the NCFTA.
It's a safe and secure way for security professionals to learn how to navigate underground marketplaces and forums without being identified and booted off.
"You show them, hey, what's for sale? It's everything. It's drugs, it's how-to guides, it's exploits, it's mule networks, it's your information. It's your credit card information. So everything's out there, everything's for sale," Mancini explained.
Both the workshop instructors, and students, who are all security professionals, stress the importance of keeping safe online.
"We all need to take precautions with ourselves... with our kids ... companies ... organizations. Just anything that's out there online... WWW stands for Wild Wild West," said Elena Steinke, a security engineer and student at the workshop.
The number one tip is to be careful what you click on. Be cautious of suspicious emails and avoid downloading any suspicious programs. Always maintain good passwords and frequently update your systems.
"Just use good common caution and common sense when you're online," said Bill Welch, an instructor at Mercyhurst University.
The University says their cyber security programs within the intelligence studies department continue to grow. Students with any type of cyber security training are much more marketable than those without it.
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