To be unhackable

Security is a basic human need.

Traditionally, the biggest threats to our security were physical break-ins – burglars breaking into our house and taking away our valuables. Padlocks, burglar alarms, booby traps, CCTV, bank lockers – all of these were means to protect us from physical intrutions.

To be absolutely impregnable to physical break-ins was nigh impossible. Your house needed to be guarded against every form of physical threat in the world. Yet, there was a pragmatic solution here. Your house merely needed to be more secure than the least secure houses in your neighbourhood. As long as there were easier targets around, there is no reason a burglar would bother breaking into your place of dwelling.

Today, most of our threats are digital. A burglar would gain a lot more by breaking into my digital accounts than my house.

Here as well, to be absolutely unhackable is nigh impossible. You need to guard yourself against every possible cyberthreat. The pragmatic solution, once again, is to be more secure than the least secure computers around you. Given how insecure most people’s digital behaviours are, this is easy to achieve. All you need are a couple of simple measures and some common sense.

An attempt to be absolutely unhackable is futile. But to be relatively unhackable is easy, and it is the latter that matters.