When the history of computer security is written, 2013 is going to go down as something of a watershed year. It was the year of the Target breach that exposed the credit and debit card numbers of some 40 million consumers, and numerous attacks against Twitter, Facebook, Evernote and others. In short, it was a year when computer security incidents became something that mainstream people worried about a lot.
Yes, the number of overall attacks is on the rise. This is the bad news that you probably already knew. But there’s some oddly good news that may surprise you: Nearly all of the 1,300-plus data breaches confirmed last year were carried out using only nine basic attack patterns. Learn to better combat those nine patterns and you stand a better chance of resisting attacks, though as with all things related to computer security, what at first seems logical and easy is always messier and more difficult in practice.