FTP Requires Preparation for Security Threats

FTP can put network administrators at risk.

File transfer protocol, often shortened to FTP, is still used by many network administrators in the IT industry. Though FTP is regaining some of its popularity, this protocol has proven insecure in the past. The reason many IT professionals are returning to FTP (despite past major breaches) is because other file sharing services have become the target of hackers and other security threats. However, many tech pundits advise moving away from FTP and focusing on other means of sharing files. As of now, FTP is still necessary to many network administrator jobs, but it is important to get a strong education in information technology to learn a wide range of networking options. More importantly, tech professionals should be prepared to defend against threats to security whether using FTP or another file sharing service. Start pursuing your online information technology degree today to prepare for a career in this industry.

The Risks of FTP
FTP has become a staple for many network administrators, but the aging system comes with some security flaws. Anyone in IT using FTP needs to have a strong knowledge of the security challenges they may face in order to defend against them accordingly. FTP has a risk of inadequate authentication, which puts messages at risk of being sent to the wrong user. FTP also lacks delivery controls that prevent data from being copied or deleted. Essentially, FTP makes it difficult to know if messages have been sent securely, and often opens up several access points to hackers. 

Target
Perhaps the most famous Internet security breach was that which effected major retailer Target, when the company found out that millions of credit card numbers were potentially jeopardized. The hackers in this case used a specific malware program to steal data from an FTP for a period of two weeks. The thieves stole over 11 gigabytes of customer data, none of which remains on the FTP today. Cyber criminals in this type of situation often have a toolbox of crimeware. This case, along with the attack on Neiman Marcus, garnered a lot of public attention. Internet security has since become a top priority for many companies, a skill which can be learned at an accredited university focused on providing a continuing education in information technology. 

This article is sponsored by Western Governors University, a nonprofit, accredited, online university. WGU offers bachelor's and master's online degree programs in IT. To find out more, please visit www.wgu.edu/wisecareers_IT

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