Lab – Cybersecurity Case Studies (Instructor Version)


Research and analyze cyber security incidents

Background / Scenario

Governments, businesses, and individual users are increasingly the targets of cyberattacks and experts predict that these attacks are likely to increase in the future. Cybersecurity education is a top international priority as high-profile cyber-security related incidents raise the fear that attacks could threaten the global economy. The Center for Strategic and International Studies estimates that the cost of cybercrime to the global economy is more than $400 billion annually and in the United State alone as many as 3000 companies had their systems compromised in 2013. In this lab you will study four high profile cyberattacks and be prepared to discuss the who, what, why and how of each attack.

Required Resources

  • PC or mobile device with Internet access

Step 1: Conduct search of high profile cyberattacks.

a. Using your favorite search engine conduct a search for each of the cyberattacks listed below. Your search will likely turn up multiple results ranging from news articles to technical articles.

Home Depot Security Breach
Target Credit Card Breach
The Stuxnet Virus
Sony Pictures Entertainment Hack

Note: You can use the web browser in virtual machine installed in a previous lab to research the hack. By using the virtual machine, you may prevent malware from being installed on your computer.

b. Read the articles found from your search in step 1a and be prepared to discuss and share your research on the who, what, when, where, and why of each attack.

Step 2: Write an analysis of a cyberattack.

Select one of the high-profile cyberattacks from step 1a and write an analysis of the attack that includes answers to the questions below.

a. Who were the victims of the attacks?
Answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

b. What technologies and tools were used in the attack?
The answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

c. When did the attack happen within the network?
The answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

d. What systems were targeted?
The answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

e. What was the motivation of the attackers in this case? What did they hope to achieve?
The answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

f. What was the outcome of the attack? (stolen data, ransom, system damage, etc.)
The answers will vary based on the cyberattack chosen.

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