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Knowledge – The Best Defense in Cyberspace

Myth or reality….most of the times things are very clear. And when they are not, it is easy to ask someone around you – a parent or a friend or a colleague. In any case, there is always Google or your favorite search engine. But certain kinds of questions have no simple answers, particularly when they pertain to a very dynamic field, where things keep changing very quickly, and where new things keep emerging. One such field is cyber safety. Every day criminals are trying out new kinds of attacks. In light of this growing and voluminous threat, I find the book CYBER UNSAFE very handy.

Written by Dr. Gaurav Gupta and Garima Gupta, the book clarifies what is a myth and what is a reality for 62 questions that the common person might ask and not readily get answers to. These are things such as whether data is destroyed permanently or not, whether it is the government’s responsibility to keep us all safe, and even whether money can buy security. These are questions that do not have clear cut answers, but the Guptas  have taken up an enormous challenge by seeking and sharing answers. Despite being fairly knowledgeable in this field, I found myself reading this book, page after page, because the authors have done two fantastic things. First, they have explained the issue with facts and logic. Their explanations are in a language and style that a common person without deep knowledge of technology will understand. Second, they have given plenty of examples in support. I expect these examples will have a bigger impact than the explanation itself – they are that powerful.

Each of the 62 chapters in this book ends with take aways of what the individual should do and should not do. Some of them are common sense, but many are actually quite insightful. They pertain to the technology domain, such as logging out of emails as well as beyond. Let me share a couple of examples:

  1. Noise is your friend. Play a song or any audio you wish to listen to while working on some critical or sensitive information to foil side-channel attacks.
  2. Always use your own pen and never borrow anyone’s pen for bank related work.

If you have yourself been a victim of cybercrime then that should be motivation enough for you to read this book end to end. If you are fortunate to have been spared till now, do remember that you are definitely there one the target list of many hackers and they are just waiting for the right opportunity to trap you. This is the book that will empower you frustrate their efforts.

I deeply appreciate the effort that the Guptas have put in to write this book, and I give it a rating of 5 stars.

Manoj Agrawal

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