The theft of more than 100 million customer records from Target late last year has drawn much public and media attention. Consumers remain alarmed that such a large retailer could be hacked so thoroughly.
But in falling victim to cyber crime, Target TGT +0.08% is far from alone. To call Target’s data breach the tip of the iceberg doesn’t begin to capture the magnitude of the threat companies and individuals face today from cyber criminals. A more fitting metaphor is that we are in the midst of the largest, but largely unnoticed, world-wide epidemic, infecting computers and communications systems, and spreading at a dangerous pace.
Cyber threats are a complex global phenomenon, and an international effort drawing on knowledge from a range of disciplines is needed to address it.
One attempt is the joint MIT-Harvard project, Explorations in Cyber International Relations (ECIR), headed by Prof. Nazli Choucri, of MIT’s Political Science department. This collaborative effort, supported by the U.S. Defense Department, is advancing a research agenda involving experts from the MIT Sloan School of Management, MIT’s Political Science and Computer Science Departments, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and Harvard Law School.
Read the full post at MarketWatch.
Stuart Madnick is the John Norris Maguire professor of information technology at the Sloan School of Management and professor of engineering systems at MIT School of Engineering. For the past five years he has been a participant in Explorations in Cyber International Relations and served on the Executive Committee.