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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – It’s 2017 and every device we use is connected to the internet. Many of the devices are used to store very personal information. “People didn’t grow up until this generation with the internet in their pocket, and not everyone understands secure practices,” ISSA North Alabama Chapter President Carey Pool explained.

This may be why 9 million people a year have their identity stolen or companies get their systems hacked. But there are companies out there fighting against cyber attacks. “People in the boardroom need somebody with years of experience, lots of certification, and lots of know how. Calhoun is turning them out, UAH is turning them out as fast as they can, but there is still not enough,” Pool explained.

Pool said this is why they host events like “Rocket Secure“; to connect people to cybersecurity jobs.  “There’s a huge gap in the current industry for people who understand computers, how to secure them, how to configure them,” Pool said.

It takes more than a degree to get a job. “You don’t only need to know how to do cybersecurity. You also have to know how to do that in an operational environment. So they have to have the operational skills to advise folks on how to do that securely,” Cyber Security Professional Jeremy Conway said.

Pool said the Rocket City is the perfect place to find a job in cybersecurity. He said the threats aren’t going anywhere. “There are bad guys out there, and they are trying to get you, especially when it comes to cyber.  You know, paranoia is healthy in this industry, at least a little,” PeopleSec CEO Joshua Crumbaugh said.

Crumbaugh’s company focuses on the human element of cyber security. “Last year over 90 percent of breaches that everyone heard about in the news, they had some sort of human error associated with them,” Crumbaugh said.  His company teaches people how to avoid a cyber attack.

“The difference between a person getting hacked at home versus getting hacked at their business is typically the presentation of that hack,” Conway said.

He said people can get hacked easily. “It’s from opening an email that looks very legit, you will not be able to tell the difference. They’ve gotten so good at mirror images,” Conway said. He added you won’t know for weeks you’ve fallen victim.

“In the old days what would happen is your computer will start freaking out and it will go to a blue screen. You will be aware that something happened. Nowadays you click on something and you don’t realize something bad until you get the credit report,” Conway explained.

If you pay close attention you can avoid being attacked. “One example is to look at the sender or sender’s email address and make sure it’s from a legit place, and something you are expecting,” Crumbaugh said

Crumbaugh thinks everyone should go through a cybersecurity class so they can be better educated on the matter. For more information, click here.