Expert talks possibility of cyber catastrophe

(WISH Photo)

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WISH) — It has been a brutal year for cyber attacks: even right here in Indianapolis.

Over the holidays, the city suffered a cyber attack on it’s communication system. From Sony to Home Depot, cyber crimes have been making headlines to the point where cyber security made an unprecedented appearance in President Obama’s State of the Union Address.

“I think it was great just to show it is receiving some attention,” says Von Welch, Director of the Center for Applied Cyber Security at Indiana University Bloomington. “I think we still have several steps to go to figure out what we’re going to do about it.”

Welch hosted a seminar on campus Thursday to explain what the CACR is currently doing to research these issues.

“We don’t have that sort of in-depth study right now. When we have a cyber security failure, often times we’re left to wonder what really happened,” Welch said.

Welch thinks we are currently hovering between two very real possibilities: the constant annoyance of having a number of identities and credit cards stolen each year or the possibility of some sort of cyber catastrophe.

“Let’s put it this way,” says Welch, “I think we’ve seen with the Sony attack, there is still some interesting ways that cyber-hacking can be used to create chaos that we haven’t imagined yet.”