Smart City and Cyber Security: A Case Study on San Diego
Smart City and Cyber Security: A Case Study on San Diego

Smart City and Cyber Security: A Case Study on San Diego

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  • Pages: 7 (3137 words)
  • Published: November 20, 2021
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Cities all over the world are increasing growing smart. These include San Diego, Barcelona, New Yolk, and Dubai among many others. However, this has been posed them in the fatal risk of compromised cyber security and potential loss of their assets such as information system concerning the local department, general security, schools, power plants, law enforcement, transport system, and hospitals. In a bid to prevent any leakage or loss of this information, many cities are now investing in enhancing cyber security.

Cyber security is a system that controls traffic hacking operation done by cyber criminals. This prevents loss or unintended access of the information systems owned by a city or individuals in a city. San Diego is among the most active cities in enhancing cyber security in the world today. San Diego has, over the years, held offices, headquarters, and main centers for many organizations, departments, and government security organizations. For instance, San Diego is the headquarters of Qualcomm, US Navy, and Marine Corps. It is deemed to be the largest military concentration across the world.

Background Information

Just like many other current cities, San Diego has realized


the benefits Information and Computing Technologies (ICT) and Internet of Things (IoT) in gathering and bringing together all the information about the city’s assets.footnoteRef:3 With these systems, a city can be guarantee of utmost conveniences an also a better and improved quality of life. All the San Diego’s city infrastructure and services have been altered to suit the interconnected information systems used for monitoring, regulating, automation, and for control.footnoteRef:4 Among the systems that have been summarized into interconnected information system in San Diego include: water and sanitation, financial information, environment, administrative information, education, and other systems.

Through implementers and planners such as Dr. Sandra Brown who is the Vice Chancellor in Research at San Diego’s University of California as well as David Graham who acts as the city’s Deputy COO in charge of Neighboring Services have step up their efforts in combining elements of local academia, individuals talents, and entrepreneurship in an attempt to make the city smarter. The program of MetroLab has also been put in place to ensure that smart city’s measures and goals will be fully set and achieved in the nearest future possible. Metrolab acts as a network connection which supports the city, university, and overall development in San Diego. This has been achieved through contribution of Sandra Brown’s and David Graham’s departments which are geared for smart development of San Diego city. Also, the GPS Connected Qualcomm 3G network enhances data transfer across all the sectors in the city.

Why has San Diego Invested Heavily in Cyber Security?

The main reason why the city opted for cyber security is the interconnection of all its systems of information. These include traffic information, pollution, financial transaction, hospital, transport system, legal enforcements, and schools information. This interconnectedness of information systems has rendered many individuals to be reliable on the provision

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of information during their daily activities. For instance, militants, students, patients, people involved in lawsuits, and business community rely solely on the smart city information systems.

Different individuals usually navigate and use the systems at various times in order to get the information required, for example, criminal and law enforcement proceedings. In this light, therefore, cyber security in San Diego has to be on the par. Although the city of San Diego enjoys a smart technology with a summarization of all its information, it is still on the risk of having its information held via ransom ware or unnecessarily accessed by criminals and unintended individuals. footnoteRef:5 Thus, the city has invested a lot in ensuring cyber security. With the efforts of the education system via the University of California and different organizations geared to ensuring security of the city, San Diego has been able to control the access and security of its systems of information.


San Diego is a city which is famously for hosting many departments and organization. It is the headquarters of US Navy and Marine Corps. The city is also a home to many schools and colleges, a business center, health center, entertainment center, and financial center. The city has loads of information systems that are essential to individuals in their different instances of lives. At the same time, the city has been working hard to integrate this information in the ICT and IoT systems. Also, as a smart city, San Diego previously analyzed the benefits and outcomes of interconnecting its data environment. This would help in controlling, regulating, and monitoring different systems and services across the city.

Security and privacy is, thus, an important component in most of these sectors in order to prevent information and data access by unintended individuals. It also enhances safe and uninterrupted control and regulation of systems such as road traffic, garbage collection, environmental pollution, hospitals, and education services. The city has to ensure that the interconnected information systems are safe from ransom ware and cyber criminals’ interference.


In 2014, hackers were reported to have compromised over 100,000 Smart TVs, refrigerator units, and many other house appliances. Another case was witnessed with the Linux worm known as “Linux.Darlloz” which was able to hijack numerous home appliances such as routers, set-top boxes, and security cameras.footnoteRef:6 Therefore, many IoT devices, desktop computers, and mobile devices are in a threat of being attacked by cyber criminals.

Many cities are now depending on smart technologies for all their proceedings. Everything has been integrated into IoT and ICT technologies for easy control and regulation. This include: street lights and traffic control systems, public transport, parking application systems, and water and energy management systems.footnoteRef:7 Over $1.5 trillion is spent annually on cyber security in different cities across the world. By the year 2020, many cities in the world are aspiring to be fully advanced as modern smart cities.

On the other hand, hackers have hit the world of renovation with a stance. More sophisticated and stubborn viruses have been introduced into the world. These viruses are strong and able to affect the functioning of systems. For instance, there have been many

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