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Professor Focuses on Cybersecurity, Cyberwarfare

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In a world that is constantly connected to the Internet, an increasingly large number of cyberattacks happen daily. These hacks can cause great damage, from personal identity theft to shutting down a nation’s Internet for an extended period of time. According to Dr. Shannon McMurtrey, professor of computer information systems and director of the cybersecurity graduate program at Missouri State University, these cyberattacks will be the future of warfare.  

In late March, “The Science of Military Strategy” issued a report in which China finally acknowledged that they had offensive cyberattack capabilities. McMurtrey says that this is a game changer in interactions between China and the United States, but he notes that many other countries are known to be in the game as well, including Russia and North Korea. McMurtrey’s research interest lies in the area of offensive cyber capabilities as well.

In pop culture, the phrase, the Internet of things, is being heavily discussed, because many previously mundane household items are now coming with IP Addresses. This address is an identification tool that everything that can connect to the Internet has. And if it can connect to the Internet, it can also be hacked and altered. McMurtrey notes that as individuals have more and more devices that can connect to the internet and more passwords to unlock account information, individuals also have increased responsibility for being protective of this information.

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