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Mikko Hypponen, Chief Research Officer at WithSecure (Formerly F-Secure), is considered one of the best cybersecurity speakers in the world and has strong opinions on the future of technology and the associated threats.

Each year, more people join the internet, whether due to increased access in developing countries or simply a new, tech-savvy generation replacing an older one. However, the growing threat is not just the number of people online, but also how we interact with technology. With more people working from home or remotely for companies worldwide, this creates vulnerabilities for companies that rely on staff to establish secure connections

Furthermore, Hypponen believes that malware attacks will increasingly target social networks. Who is protecting us from malicious software? Can we trust big tech companies, not to mention the NSA’s large surveillance operations?

If It’s Smart, It’s Vulnerable

It’s possible to book Mikko Hypponen as a keynote speaker – many of his talks expand on the ideas in his new bestselling book, “If it’s smart, it’s vulnerable.” The book discusses the transformative power of the internet, its potential threats, and the importance of cybersecurity. 

Through his 30 years of experience, Hypponen illustrates the essential role the internet plays in our lives and provides a history of how it has evolved. He also raises concerns about its future direction.

Keeping ourselves safe from hackers

There are many different threats online and they are constantly evolving, which means our best practices should also adapt over time. However, some fundamental strategies can help protect against hackers.

Using a password manager to generate strong, unique passwords for each online account is advisable. Avoid using the same password for multiple accounts, or allow the password manager to randomly generate one for you.

Two-factor authentication adds an additional layer of security to your accounts by requiring you to enter a code sent to your phone or email in addition to your password. This can prevent hackers from accessing your account remotely with just a password.

It is crucial to update your operating system, web browsers, and other software regularly. The best defences against evolving threats are often provided by the likes of Windows, so make sure these systems are up to date to protect against potential attacks.

Using a virtual private network (VPN) when connecting to public Wi-Fi can also be useful. A VPN encrypts your internet connection and protects your personal data from hackers, as well as prevents monitoring of your activity.

In the context of running a business, training is vital, especially during a time when non-technical staff may need to access systems remotely from home.

Mikko Hypponen has a strong and clear opinion

Mikko Hypponen has outlined the dangers ahead. As internet users, the best we can do is follow best practices. However, it is also important to question who are the gatekeepers of the internet, who is keeping us safe, and whether agencies like the NSA are acting in our best interests.

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