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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
Cyber Security
3.
Information Security
4.
Cyber Security and Information Security
5.
Fundamentals of Data Security
6.
FAQs
7.
Key Takeaways
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024

Difference between Cyber Security and Information Security

Author Sneha Mallik
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Ashwin Goyal
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Introduction

Cyber security and information security are frequently used interchangeably. As they're both responsible for securing and protecting computer systems from threats and data breaches, the terms Cyber security and information security are commonly confused and, unfortunately, used interchangeably.

Are you unsure why some individuals interchangeably use "information security" and "cyber security"?

You're not alone; many conversations about data security and cybercrime ignore the complexities that define the industry.

We hope to change it by offering a detailed explanation of both words and how they apply to our organization.

When we discuss data security, we're talking about protecting data from malicious or unauthorized users and attacks. Here, another question arises: What is the difference between Data and Information?

So, while "not every data can be information", data can be informed when analyzed in context and given meaning. For example, "100876" is data, but if we know it's a person's date of birth, it is the information since it has meaning. Hence, information refers to data that has some meaning.

Let us know more about cyber security and information security in detail.

Cyber Security

Cyber security is a subset of information security that refers to how companies safeguard digital assets such as networks, applications, devices, servers, and other digital assets.

Cyber-attacks are significantly more likely than physical threats, although it is simply one aspect of information security (along with physical security).

Since malware, criminal hacking, and internal error are the most common causes of data breaches, prioritizing defenses that limit these risks makes sense.

That isn't to suggest that cyber and physical security are mutually exclusive. Take, for example, the threat of lost or stolen electronics.

To prevent the devices from getting into the wrong hands, you'll require physical security measures. This will mainly shape policies that teach employees how to use their gadgets outside of the office, such as laptops.

These should, however, be supplemented with cyber security measures that protect the organization if a device is stolen.

Password-protecting the device and databases, encrypting important data, and implementing a kill switch to delete data from stolen laptops are examples of such safeguards remotely.

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Information Security

Information security is a term that refers to how companies and individuals safeguard their essential assets, such as business records, personal data, intellectual property, and so on.

This information is stored in various places, including physical files, servers and hard drives, the Cloud, and personal devices.

It will be protected in different ways; you won't use the same defense measures for paper documents as you would for digital files.

The paper documents should be kept in a drawer and only accessible to authorized people, whether by locking the drawer or maintaining the files in a locked room.

Digital files, on the other hand, necessitate technological safeguards such as access controls to ensure that only authorized users have access to them.

As you can see, the overall concept remains the same - you're putting up controls to limit who has access to the data – but the methods differ.

Information security refers to the broad practice of safeguarding personal information and the procedures used to do so.

Cyber Security and Information Security

 

Information and communications technology(ICT) is an extension word for information technology (IT) that defines the role of unified communications and telecommunications integration in the diagram above (basically the digital communication security).

The differences between cyber security and information security are as follows:

CYBER SECURITY

INFORMATION SECURITY

It is the process of securing data on the internet from outside sources. It is the process of securing data against unauthorized access, modification, or deletion in order to maintain confidentiality, integrity, and availability.
This is about being able to defend against cyber-attacks when using cyberspace. It is concerned with the security of data from all types of threats.
Cybersecurity is used to safeguard anything that is connected to the internet. It applies to all types of data, regardless of their source.
Cybersecurity is concerned with threats to cyberspace. The protection of data from any type of threat is the subject of information security.
Cybercrime, cyberfraud, and law enforcement are all targets for cybersecurity. Unauthorized access, disclosure modifications, and interruption are all threats to information security.
Professionals in cyber security, on the other hand, deal with advanced persistent threats. The backbone of data security is information security experts, and security professionals linked with it prioritize resources before dealing with risks.
It deals with cyber risks that may or may not exist, such as safeguarding your social media account, personal information, and so on. It is concerned with information assets, confidentiality, integrity and availability.

 

Also read - active and passive attacks

Fundamentals of Data Security

The fundamentals of data security should be understood whether we're talking about cyber security or information security in general.

The model includes the following components that define the strategies for protecting sensitive information:

  • People: As employees deal with sensitive information regularly, companies must educate them about the risks and how to avoid them.
  • Processes: Companies should keep track of the steps employees must take to stay safe. This should include a breakdown of data protection roles and duties.
  • Technology: Organizations can use a variety of technological defenses to combat threats, including antivirus software, access control, and data encryption.

FAQs

  1. What is information security?
    Information security is described as the state of being protected from unauthorized use of data, particularly electronic data, or the means are taken to achieve this.
     
  2. What are the principles of information security? 
    The CIA(confidentiality, integrity, availability) triad refers to an information security model made up of the three main components: confidentiality, integrity and availability. Each component represents a fundamental objective of information security. To avoid active and passive attacks in a system, we must follow these principles.
     
  3. What do Threat, Vulnerability, and Risk mean?
    The meanings are:
    Threat: Someone who has the ability to harm a system or organization by destroying or damaging its official data.
    An example is a phishing attempt.
    Vulnerability: It is a term that refers to faults in a system that makes threat outcomes more likely and hazardous.
    SQL injections and cross-site scripting are two examples.
    Risk: A combination of danger likelihood and impact/loss is referred to as risk. In simpler terms, it is referred to the potential for harm or loss if a threat exploits a vulnerability.
    Risk = Threat probability x Potential Loss
     
  4. What is cyber security?
    Cyber security is the technique of preventing harmful attacks on computers, mobile devices, servers, networks, electronic systems, and data. It is often referred to as electronic information security or information technology security.
     
  5. What are attacks in cyber security?
    When an individual or an organization purposefully and maliciously attempts to enter the information system of another individual or organization, this is referred to as a cyber attack. While most assaults have an economic goal, several recent operations have included data destruction as a goal. There are mainly two attacks, i.e., active and passive attacks.

Key Takeaways

In this blog, we learned the concepts of cyber security and information security in detail, along with their differences.
Have a look at our cyber security blog. Learn more about information security here. Refer here to learn more about active and passive attacks and, Active Attack and Passive Attack. Apart from that, you can refer to our guided paths on Coding Ninjas Studio to learn more about DSA, Competitive Programming, JavaScript, System Design, etc.

Recommended reading: 

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