Guest Blog: Cyber Security: Take Action Saturday, October 13

Nick Percoco is a world-renowned security expert and longtime Chicago resident. He's the founder of THOTCON, a security conference held each May in Chicago. THOTCON has partnered with CPL for Cyber Security Action Day, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, October 13. Join us to learn more about your own cyber security.

I am passionate about technology and cyber security. I dream about a world where everyone can use technology without having to fear being hacked or having their privacy invaded. Much of this dream can become a reality through better education and awareness.

A decade ago, I created a nonprofit called THOTCON to provide low-cost security education to college students and business professionals. Each May, hundreds of people travel to Chicago from around the world to share ideas on how to make the digital world more secure.

On Cyber Security Action Day, Saturday, October 13, THOTCON is mobilizing over 150 cyber security experts to visit CPL locations around the city. They will provide anyone who visits with them assistance on three important areas of cyber security: passwords, patching (updates) and privacy settings.   

If you'd like to dig further into these technology-related issues, check out these eye-opening and important titles. 

If you have an email address, you are definitely familiar with SPAM. But who exactly is behind all those weird messages flooding our inboxes?  Spam Nation is an account of following those messages to their source.  According to Publisher's Weekly, this book is not only "fascinating and entertaining" but also "timely, informative and sadly relevant in our cyber-dependent age."   

We live in an age of ubiquitous data collection. What have we given up in exchange for the convenience that can come from corporate surveillance and the safety that can come from government surveillance?  Bruce Schneier unpacks that question in 2015's Data and Goliath.  

Can customers expect any privacy from retailers?  We all know that corporations track certain information about us, but The Aisles Have Eyes goes into exact details about just how much data is collected, and what retailers do with it. Reading this book and learning the extent that retailers will go to may cause you to think twice before the next time you shop! 

The arrival of the smartphone made so many of the security and privacy issues detailed in these books more relevant and more urgent. Take a step back and read the technological history of how the iPhone was invented in The One Device

Learn how to secure your world: Please join us at a library near you on October 13!