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Experts express concerns over cyberattacks and give advice on how to stay safe

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Posted at 3:33 PM, Jan 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-08 19:23:21-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Cyberattacks are on the rise nationwide and experts said they are becoming far more complicated to detect.

Del Mar College computer science Professor Dr. David Abarca, CISSP, said there are ways to keep people safe from cyberthreats, but one thing is for certain: Anyone can be a target.

"Everybody who touches a computer, your 8-year-old playing on their Kindle," he said. "If they are tied to the internet, they are at risk of exposing some sort of information."

Currently the Texas government is dealing with a rise in cyberattacks from Iran. They say the attacks are reaching as many as 10,000 per minute.

However, they say they are not aware of any of these attacks being a success.

"As far as the state networks go and things that are actually within the purview of the department of information resources, we are not aware of any successful attacks," said Director of Texas Department of Information Resources Amanda Crawford.

Abarca said that while the public must remain vigilant and be careful, these cyberattacks are nothing new.

"We are no more at risk today than we were last week or last year," he said.

Cybersecurity company Core Recon operates in downtown Corpus Christi. Its CEO, John Martinez, provided some simple ways to protect from threats.

"The more important thing to have is antivirus," he said. "Update your firewalls, update everything that needs to be updated right now."

Personal computers are not the only thing at risk: City governments can be affected.

KRIS 6 News reached out to City of Corpus Christi officials, declined comment for this story.

The City of Kingsville said they take the matter very seriously.

Ingleside recently was hit with a ransomware attack. City manager David Huseman who told KRIS 6 News they still are evaluating the situation.