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Human Firewall Tip # 13: Coronavirus and Cyber Security Comparison


There are a lot of news going on related to coronavirus pandemic. As a matter of fact, coronavirus is considered a "breakout" in Google trends - this means this topic has seen a tremendous increase in searches.

On this version of #humanfirewalltipoftheday , we have used coronavirus to compare some of the cyber security terminologies like zero-day virus, patient zero and pandemic. These terms, although used in medical terms, are also widely used in cyber security especially during malicious software (malware) analysis.

  • Zero-day virus or malware means there is a previously unknown virus. This is a perfect description for covid-19. When there is a zero-day virus, most common anti-virus will not be able to detect and "clean" the malware. Depending on the type of malware, it could destroy your files or systems or even spread to the network and may cause an outbreak. Similar to coronavirus, at the time of the blog post, there is still no "cure" or antidote to heal those who are infected or to stop this type of virus from spreading.
  • In malware analysis, searching for "patient zero" is very important. The ability to identify who was infected first, the application that introduced the malware and the files the introduced the spread of the infection enables the analyst to understand the root cause and potential mitigation or even prevention. This same analogy is actually the same thing that the Chinese Health Authorities are doing. This time, we are not talking about fix for systems but instead, cure for Human. 
  • Pandemic is a broader term that came from outbreak and epidemic. Outbreak carries the same definition as an epidemic but is often used to describe a more limited geographic event. While pandemic refers to epidemic that has spread several countries affecting a large number of people (that is for the coronavirus) or systems (that is for a computer malware).

Terminologies are similar. The best thing here is, as a Human Firewall, we need to be aware of these terminologies in order to relate them to the daily communication. This is why we are trying to make cyber security as layman as possible so everyone can understand and talk about it.

We are hoping for the fast discovery of the "cure" against the coronavirus. Hopefully this version of #humanfirewalltips is able to give basic understanding that can be shared to the people around you.

Human Firewall TIp # 13 Coronavirus and Cyber Security Comparison www.buildinghumanfirewall.com


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