Last week we discussed cyberattacks and the impact they had on a hospital in Los Angeles. This type of attack, known as a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS), can have severe ramifications from the perspective of homeland security. There are numerous state and non-state actors who have the potential to hurt the United States through a cyberattack.

According to literature prepared by Dr. Rudolph Bustos, who is the Faculty Lead for Trident's Bachelor and Master of Science in Homeland Security programs, as well as faculty member Dr. Robb Pilkington, cyber attacks (terrorism) /are the disruptive use of information technology by terrorist groups to further their ideological or political agenda and/or hackers for financial gains. This takes the form of attacks on networks, computer systems, and telecommunication infrastructures."

Dr. Bustos stresses that education is key when it comes to public awareness of cyberattacks, as well as the prevention and response to them in the future. To be best prepared in the future, Dr. Bustos states, "We must educate the public on terrorists and foreign agents invading our cyber infrastructure."

"Almost daily we read or hear about sensitive information being gleaned from private or government computers," he continues. "This occurrence is becoming the new norm in intelligence gathering and cyberterrorism."

With these attacks becoming the new norm, individuals entering this field need to be trained well and be versed in modern techniques. "Trident's Cybersecurity concentration courses have no textbooks, since textbooks are usually outdated within a year's time," Dr. Bustos adds. "Instead, we read, analyze, and discuss case studies and current material from professional journals and other sources."

Those who respond to cyberattacks and cyber warfare include the military, governmental agencies, and investigative agencies, such as the FBI and CIA. In the private sector, they have many measures in place to ensure the security of computers and networks are not comprised.

With the cybersecurity sector constantly changing, this is the best way to train graduates for future success.

Learn more about our Bachelor's and Master's of Science in Homeland Security programs.

Dr. Rudolph Bustos is the Faculty Lead for the MS in Emergency and Disaster Management, MS in Homeland Security, and BS in Homeland Security Programs, College of Health Sciences, Trident University. He has 47 years cross-field experience including: (a) psychological, (b) educational, (c) social work, and (d) emergency and disaster management.