KOCHI: City-based techie couple Adarsh Nair and Greeshma M R are using the lockdown days to impart and document knowledge. The two books they co-authored— ‘The Infodemic: Infomania, Social Engineering, and the Pandemic - Break the Chain’ and ‘Dark Web Demystified: Into the Power of Anonymity’ are selling like hotcakes on Amazon and Flipkart. While the former talks about how cybercriminals capitalise on pandemic situations and how regular people can stay away from such attacks, the latter gives a detailed insight into Dark Web and its underlying technology.
“The lockdown provided us with a lot of time to be together. We were hearing a lot of news about cybercriminals exploiting the pandemic for their gains. So, we explored the topic, did our research and decided to write a book on how these criminals manage crisis capitalisation, how to detect such moves and stay safe from them. It is a book for common people to understand the dangers in cyberspace.
The book on ‘Dark Web’ is much more technical and was written to avoid many misconceptions associated with the subject. “Our son was just five months old when we started writing. So, the books are dedicated to him,” says Adarsh, who works as an Information Security and Cyber Safety professional at UST Global. Greeshma runs her own company ‘Ecoloop 360’ and is a freelance writer too.
According to Adarsh, cyberattacks have always peaked during crisis— be it the Ebola outbreak, Australian bushfires, Amazon rainforest wildfires or Covid-19. Hackers take advantage of people on the lookout for information to carry out social engineering attack campaigns.
“Cyberattacks are mostly carried out by presenting users with fake news and click-bait contents. Social engineering techniques are used to track users. People are just concerned about being safe from coronavirus. But then, in a digitalised world, staying safe in the cyberspace might be as important as staying away from the coronavirus,” adds Adarsh.
“Cyber criminals send phishing emails, which seem similar to those we receive from government or authorised organisations. The content might be regarding a free Covid-19 test being conducted or a financial benefit scheme. The intention is to trigger interest and make the user click on it. We give our bank account or credit card details assuming it’s from the authorised entity. Also, we might be forwarding the mail to our friends.
So, it is important we identify such mails and fake news, ignore and ‘Break the Chain’ in cyberspace too,” says Greeshma. The Kindle copies of both books are in demand now. Around 400 e-copies of ‘The Infodemic’ and 350 e-copies of ‘Dark Web Demystified’ have been sold. Adarsh and Greeshma now plan on creating awareness among the parents as online classes are now in full swing in the state. There is also a need to keep children safe, the couple added.