Cybersecurity and Critical Infrastructures: During and after the Era of COVID-19 Pandemic

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Electrical, Electronics and Communications Engineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 February 2022) | Viewed by 3926

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Cyber Security Cooperative Research Centre, Building 15 Level 2/270 Joondalup Dr, Joondalup, WA 6027, Australia
Interests: cyber security of critical infrastructure; operational technology; IIoT and IoT; access control; policy-based management; cyber-warfare and peacekeeping
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Critical National Infrastructures (CNIs) are vital assets for public safety, economic welfare and the national security of countries. Vulnerabilities of critical infrastructures have increased with the widespread use of information technologies.

Moreover, during the COVID-19 crisis, the workforce is being encouraged to continue teleworking while most products and services have become available over the web.  Phishing emails, social engineering attacks, malware, ransomware, spyware, medical-related scams and investment opportunity fraud are only a few examples of the cybercrime incidents reported during the COVID-19 crisis period.

As Critical National Infrastructures are becoming more vulnerable to cyber attacks, their protection becomes a significant issue for any organization as well as any nation. The risks to continued operations from failing to upgrade aging infrastructure, or not meeting mandated regulatory regimes, are considered higher given the demonstrable impact of such circumstances.

Due to the rapid increase in sophisticated cyber threats targeting critical infrastructures with significant destructive effects, the cyber security of CNIs has become an agenda item for academics, practitioners and policy makers. A holistic view that covers technical, policy, human and behavioral aspects is essential to effectively handle the cyber security of critical infrastructures. Moreover, the ability to attribute cyber attacks is a vital element of avoiding impunity in cyberspace.

In this Special Issue, both research and practical aspects of cyber security considerations in critical infrastructures are of interest. Aligned with the interdisciplinary nature of cyber security, authors from academia, governments and industry are welcome to contribute.

We seek original and high-quality submissions on, but not limited to, one or more of the following topics:

  • Security of the smart grid
  • Security of supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems
  • Cyber security of complex and distributed critical infrastructures
  • Cyber security of industrial control systems
  • Cyber security modeling and simulation
  • Cyber threat modeling and analysis
  • Safety–security interactions
  • Cyber security engineering
  • Behavioral modeling
  • Network security and protocols
  • Security, privacy and legal issues of big data and the Internet of Things
  • Cyber threat intelligence
  • Situational awareness
  • Attack modeling, prevention, mitigation and defense
  • Cyber–physical system security approaches and algorithms
  • Critical infrastructure security policies, standards and regulations
  • Vulnerability and risk assessment methodologies for distributed critical infrastructures
  • Risk management and cyber insurance
  • Simulation and test beds for the security evaluation of critical infrastructures

Dr. Leandros Maglaras
Prof. Dr. Helge Janicke
Dr. Mohamed Amine Ferrag
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • security of the smart grid
  • security of supervisory control and data acquisition (scada) systems
  • cyber security of complex and distributed critical infrastructures
  • cyber security of industrial control systems
  • cyber security modeling and simulation
  • cyber threat modeling and analysis
  • safety–security interactions
  • cyber security engineering
  • behavioral modeling
  • network security and protocols
  • security, privacy and legal issues of big data and the Internet of Things
  • cyber threat intelligence
  • situational awareness
  • attack modeling, prevention, mitigation and defense
  • cyber–physical system security approaches and algorithms
  • critical infrastructure security policies, standards and regulations
  • vulnerability and risk assessment methodologies for distributed critical infrastructures
  • risk management and cyber insurance
  • simulation and test beds for the security evaluation of critical infrastructures
  • resiliency and security of cyber systems
  • cyber security and privacy policy
  • hardware security solutions
  • incident response
  • encryption, authentication, availability assurance
  • human awareness and training
  • intrusion detection
  • trust and privacy
  • secure communication protocols
  • malware analysis
  • attribution of cyber attacks
  • cyber warfare, peacekeeping
  • hybrid war
  • cybercrime
  • COVID-19 pandemic
  • coronavirus

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Published Papers (1 paper)

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Research

19 pages, 738 KiB  
Article
A Mamdani Type Fuzzy Inference System to Calculate Employee Susceptibility to Phishing Attacks
by Yahya Lambat, Nick Ayres, Leandros Maglaras and Mohamed Amine Ferrag
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(19), 9083; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11199083 - 29 Sep 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2924
Abstract
It is a well known fact that the weakest link in a cyber secure system is the people who configure, manage or use it. Security breaches are persistently being attributed to human error. Social engineered based attacks are becoming more sophisticated to such [...] Read more.
It is a well known fact that the weakest link in a cyber secure system is the people who configure, manage or use it. Security breaches are persistently being attributed to human error. Social engineered based attacks are becoming more sophisticated to such an extent where they are becoming increasingly more difficult to detect. Companies implement strong security policies as well as provide specific training for employees to minimise phishing attacks, however these practices rely on the individual adhering to them. This paper explores fuzzy logic and in particular a Mamdani type fuzzy inference system to determine an employees susceptibility to phishing attacks. To negate and identify the susceptibility levels of employees to social engineering attacks a Fuzzy Inference System FIS was created through the use of fuzzy logic. The utilisation of fuzzy logic is a novel way in determining susceptibility due to its ability to resemble human reasoning in order to solve complex inputs, or its Interpretability and simplicity to be able to compute with words. This proposed fuzzy inference system is based on a number of criteria which focuses on attributes relating to the individual employee as well as a companies practices and procedures and through this an extensive rule base was designed. The proposed scoring mechanism is a first attempt towards a holistic solution. To accurately predict an employees susceptibility to phishing attacks will in any future system require a more robust and relatable set of human characteristics in relation to the employee and the employer. Full article
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