What Can a Computer Security Specialist Do for Your Business?

A computer security specialist can make a very significant contribution to your organisation's information security. In recent years, information security in general, and IT security in particular, has grown increasingly specialised and formalised. A general IT training is no longer sufficient to cover all technical aspects of the field, and so a computer security specialist is required for all but the most basic tasks.

So what does a computer security specialist actually do? There are several sub-fields of information security, and no one person can hope to be an expert in them all. But in general, IT security specialists usually have one or more of the following specialisations:
  • A penetration tester actively probes the defences of an organisation's computer systems and network infrastructure, either by mimicking a hacker attack from outside, or else by making use of varying degrees of insider knowledge.

  • An application tester performs a similar function for externally-facing servers, e.g. email, web, or FTP servers.

  • An information security auditor reviews a company's overall information security management system, comparing it against industry best practices such as the ISO 27001 standard.

Increase Computer Security With Biometrics

Computer security is high on the list of priorities for most people today. Because computers have recently become very mobile, there is a very distinct danger that the personal data that a person keeps in their mobile computer can very well end up in the hands of the wrong kind of people.

There has been a lot of technology focused on providing the necessary security features in computers so that the data that is stored in them is kept safe. However, there is always one thing that typically undermines whatever security feature has been implemented on the computer. A personal computer or laptop is principally a private piece of property. As such, while the data that is stored in it is also very personal, the person using the computer is often prone to disregarding whatever security protocol is used to protect the data and computer. This is simply because he or she is assuming that the computer will remain personal and safe from other hands.
Unfortunately, time and again, that belief has been proven false, which is why computer security needs to be developed around the idea of security being second nature to the user. To organically merge security with the individual, a lot of people and organizations aim to increase computer security with biometrics.
Essentially, biometrics consists of a fingerprint scan that serves as a security barrier for the computer. Once installed in a computer, no potential computer user can access the computer unless he or she is specifically identified as a legitimate user of that computer.
As a device, the biometric reader scans the information from the fingerprints of a person. This acts as a key to opening up the computer. Unless the person has the right fingerprints to match those stored in the biometric device, the computer remains inaccessible. Thus, the computer is well protected from illegitimate users.

Computer Security Free - Is That Possible?

Everyone who surfs the Net needs to be concerned about computer security. There are viruses, trojans, spyware, malicious adware... the list of what's out there in the way of malware goes on and on. You either take steps to keep your computer and data secure or you suffer the consequences.

Just how much computer security do you need? And can you get computer security free?

The answer to the first question is: "It depends." It depends on the value of what you are protecting. If you buy things on the Internet, have financial transactions going through your computer, then all of the financial info you use to make purchases is potentially at risk. What would it cost you if info thieves got your data?

And don't feel secure just because you don't store your credit card number, cc expiration date and cch number (on the back of the card) on your computer. If you type in data to make a purchase, a key-logger spyware program hidden on your computer could be recording every keystroke you make and forwarding the info to cyber thieves.

Can you get computer security free? Yes, if you do not need heavy-duty security. If you pick the best you can get for the money, then your computer security, free or paid, is generally cost effective. You can do a lot with free software, but it is generally for light duty. Still, it might make you secure enough.

The computer your kids use to download and play computer games and surf sites on MySpace and similar social sites, might not have a lot of valuable data on it. It probably would not attract the most competent or determined thieves. For that machine you could get your computer security free.

For the computer you use for paying bills and business, you would probably want to "harden" your security defenses. Put in both a hardware firewall and a software firewall, get world-class anti spyware software and set up a "data safe" for sensitive records.