Whether you’re already familiar with cybersecurity or want to educate yourself on the topic, Cyberdanger is a great read.
The author, Eddy Willems, is a well-known expert in security and malware and currently the resident Security Evangelist and Global Security Officer at G Data Software.
Despite the title and the existence of many different cyber threats, the book is somewhat malware-centric. This should not be wholly unexpected: malware is a considerable threat, and Willems worked for years for several antivirus vendors and is a board member of AMTSO (Anti-Malware Testing Standards Organization) and EICAR (European Institute for Computer Antivirus Research).
He talks about malware and the various types of malware creators, how it’s sold and used and, in general, about today’s most prolific threats. In a dedicated chapter, he also debunks frequent malware myths and misconceptions, such as “my PC doesn’t run Windows, so it is quite safe”, or “my PC holds no valuable data, so why would anyone attack it?”
He offers helpful security tips for both consumers and companies, to help them navigate the cyber world safely, and dedicates a chapter to media, explaining its role as an ally, an influencer, a victim or even responsible for spreading malware. He gives pointers how to distinguish between reliable information and fake news, which are essential in this age of copious and easy disinformation.
He shares his predictions for cyber dangers and malware we can expect to encounter in the future, as well as those of other infosec experts, and wraps the book up with a short fiction story about the possible cyberdangers in the year 2033 – a likely scenario that may occur if a villain decided to hack an important organization, putting at risk all humanity. What would the organization do? Who would save the day?
Willems makes it clear that cybercrime will never be completely eradicated, but nevertheless we must take all the necessary steps to secure our devices and consequently ourselves. Also, the government has a big role in providing a secure environment for its citizens.
Who’s it for?
Cyberdanger is a light, accessible read about cyber threats and computer security essentials, without complicated infosec jargon. All chapters contain various experts’ opinions, interesting historical tidbits, explanations and widely recognized truths (that most readers might not have yet figured out on their own).
The book was originally written in Dutch, then translated into German, and now finally updated and translated into English.
A lot of books on the topic of cybersecurity are very US-centric. Due to the author being Belgian, this one has many anecdotes and examples that will perhaps be closer to the experiences of European readers and could, consequently, make the risks seem more immediate to that particular public.
The book is great for consumers and organizations seeking security knowledge and tips, and individuals seeking to professionally enter the cybersecurity arena and wanting to learn more about the history and present of cyber threats.