An Indian student with his team at the Edith Cowan University (ECU), Australia, has developed a sophisticated early warning system to protect small businesses vulnerable to cyber attacks. Kashyap Vijay, who hails from Karnataka, is part of a five-member team at the Edith Cowan Security Research Institute in Perth, Australia, that worked on the project to develop the tool.
Termed as ‘honeypots’, the Modern Honey-Pi network is a defensive tool which can be used by cybersecurity professionals to gather intelligence and monitor attacks aimed at their organization. They are connected to a company’s network looking like a high-value target for cybercriminals – hence the name honeypot. But they actually collect data about possible attacks.
They can also be connected to an internal network, for devices which have been compromised. That could be a personal computer where someone has opened a suspicious email containing malware which could be trying to spread around the network.
The early warning lets cybersecurity professionals take action as soon as the criminal activity is detected and hopefully put a stop to any attack.The data collected on potential cyber attacks is also shared with law-enforcement and intelligence services.
“Small business often have less money and resources to spend on cybersecurity – and that makes them more vulnerable and a target for cybercriminals. The Honeypot-pi system comes at a fraction of the price of employing a trained cybersecurity professional,” says Vijay Kashyap, Research Assistant, ECU Security Research Institute.
It costs as much as a coffee machine in an office, adds Kashyap.
The whole setup of the Modern Honey-Pi Network is automated once it is plugged into the devices. It is designed for vulnerable small businesses who can now deploy cutting-edge cybersecurity tools to protect themselves and importantly, their customers.
The project is part of a work integrated learning place for a group of students studying in ECU’s cybersecurity program and is nominated for the National iAwards to be announced in Melbourne.The group is already in discussions with potential investors about commercializing their project.