Two airmen at Scott Air Force Base promote cybersecurity personally and professionally

Jul 21, 2015

Raymond Evans,left; Paul Jordan, right
Credit Alex Heuer

Every day, billions of internet users are inevitably vulnerable to hackers from across the world.

While regular citizens are susceptible to attacks, so is the government. Professionals at Scott Air Force Base are tasked with ensuring our systems are secure and some of those airmen are passionate about cybersecurity outside of work, and on a personal level.

Beginning July 25 thru July 26, the local chapter of the Military Cyber Professionals Association will host an event to teach citizens ways to prevent hackers from breeching their systems.

SSgt. Raymond Evans, the group’s event coordinator, explained that officials from the Department of Defense track three types of hackers- white, gray, and black hat hackers. Black hats hack systems for malicious purposes, such as stealing identities and other sensitive information. Gray hats’ hacking intentions could be good or bad depending on their agenda. White hat hackers collaborate with companies to identify system vulnerabilities to teach people basic cyber securities and help strengthen defense systems.

“St. Louis on the Air” in 2013 talked with local resident and white hat hacker Charlie Miller about security in the digital age.

“Many of the things that are seen in the cybersecurity realm all over the world [deals with] user error,” Evans said. “The internet is an ever-growing and ever-changing environment. There’s no difference in an attack coming from domestic than there is from overseas. Basic education can help change that immensely and help protect people in more ways than they think.”

Lt. Paul Jordan, president of the St. Louis Chapter, said that some of the basic techniques citizens can use to protect themselves include creating strong passwords for accounts and changing them regularly, and prioritizing what accounts need more protection than others (such as bank accounts versus social media accounts).

“If you understand how to think like an attacker, then your chances of being able to defend an attack greatly increases,” Jordan said.

                                                                           

Related Event

2015 Military Cyber Professionals Association Capture the Flag!

  • When: July 25 at 9:00 a.m.- July 26 at 3:00 p.m.
  • Where: 4240 Duncan Ave, St. Louis, MO 63110
  • More information

St. Louis on the Air discusses issues and concerns facing the St. Louis area. The show is produced by Mary Edwards and Alex Heuer and hosted by veteran journalist Don Marsh. Follow us on Twitter: @STLonAir.