Published February 12, 2016 This content is archived.

Dr. Arun Vishwanath was asked by CNN to contribute to the discussion on hacking and "spear-phishing" - targeted attacks in which a hacker hides a malware payload in the attachment of an email, which when clicked opens a back door into computer networks that are then used to hijack system controllers or extract data. Such attacks are no longer solely impacting people's online lives, but are now transitioning into real world onslaughts. Cyber attackers have graduated from stealing personal information to crippling public utilities in several countries. To prevent these attacks, Vishwanath recommends "a simple, one-stop, city- or county-level solution: one that is well-publicized, so everyone in a region can be easily made aware of this service; one that is convenient and allows for reporting using a variety of mechanisms; and one that not only collects fraud information but also disseminates information about how to protect and, if necessary, remediate the breach, so people can get localized help." 

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