How Holiday Shoppers Can Protect Their Information Against Cyberattacks

December 10, 2018
Updated 2mo ago

By Tracey Cheek

The holiday season is here again ー and as consumers buy and spend, more personal information is being exposed online.

The number and severity of cyberattacks are on the rise, and both consumers and businesses need protection. Shane Wall, chief technology officer at HP and global head of HP Labs sat down with Cheddar on Monday to discuss the state of cybersecurity heading into the new year.

“It continues to be dynamic,” said Wall on cyberattacks. “The number of attacks we’ve seen are accelerating. Keeping up with that continues to be a big challenge for us tech providers.”

Hackers are getting smarter, and attacks could come from a variety of sources, said Wall.

“It could be nation-state hackers, it could be individual hackers,” said Wall.

As for the motivations behind the attacks, he said they vary. “We’ve seen a lot of extortion pieces that go on, or it could just be fame," he said. "They just want to be known.”

In this environment, consumers need to protect themselves, and that starts with selecting a secure device. “When you make a device choice, you’re making a security choice,” Wall told Cheddar. “So choose carefully the device that you use. Make sure you look underneath to make sure they actually have all the right security pieces in place."

He said consumers online should always make sure they are shopping at trusted websites, and advised against opening any emails that aren't from a known sender.

Tech giants have to get into the mind of a hacker to prevent attacks, especially at a moment when the nature of cyberattacks is constantly changing.

“Now we’re seeing very dynamic attacks that are actually using artificial intelligence and machine learning in order to find and probe capabilities," Wall said. “As a result, on our end, we need to turn to things like artificial intelligence and machine learning in order to combat the bad guys.”

For full interview click here.