Protecting people and business from hackers

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COLUMBIA - Boone County and the City of Columbia came together Wednesday to fight cybersecurity threats.

The panel discussion served as a way to caution both private and public sectors about computer threats that may be a just a click away. Deputy City Manager Tony St. Romine said the main thing is for all technology users to be aware.

"Phishing attacks are where you might get an email that asks you to click on a particular link," St. Romaine said. "If you do that and the link is infected, it can make your information available to a third party."

The popular trends and tactics used by hackers all around Missouri and the nation were discussed at the meeting for the companies to learn how to avoid such a common problem.

Some of the tactics include flashy advertisements that promises free prizes to whoever clicks on the ad. That click may open the door to a hacker looking for personal information.

Boone County Commissioner Karen Miller said there have been security breaches over the internet that have devastated many companies. 

"If there is anything we can do to help prevent that from happening to local governemets, we need to do everything we can," Miller said. 

Panel officials said to contact an IT desk right away if you feel that your device has been infected.