The digitization of our society offers a lot of ease and brings in lots of money, but it also makes our society vulnerable. Hackers are able to take down our critical infrastructure. How do make our infrastructure less vulnerable? Television show ‘Met de Kennis van Nu’ (‘With what we know today’) tries to answer that question.
The presenters Diederik and Elisabeth demonstrate the role that backup systems, secure hardware and software and ethical hackers play. Fox-IT CEO Ronald Prins explains that countries do not always assign cyber security the urgency it needs. “In Germany, there are government departments where everyone, no matter in what position, uses a highly secure workplace. In the Netherlands, we don’t see that as much. I believe other countries might feel more threatened than we do, but this does not mean we that don’t see the Russians intrude in our government networks. The Dutch intelligence agency AIVD reports this regularly.”
To keep our infrastructure safe, ethical hackers should be used more often. Prins: “The government should make regular testing by hackers mandatory to hospitals and other critical organizations. If we really want to take the threat seriously, the government should identify which systems are critical to our society, and order them to be monitored and let ethical hackers perform penetration tests.”
Even though we haven’t seen major cyber incidents yet, that doesn’t mean our security is adequate at the moment. “We can only say things have been going this well because no people with real bad intentions have showed up yet.”