If the cyber security trends of the past few years are any indication, cybersecurity cannot be put on the back burner, at least not without costing organizations a fortune – financially and image-wise. We have seen the big players fall or face immense reputational damage and many small businesses shutting down as a result of cyber-attacks.
Cyber security trends in 2019 have majorly impacted the industry, the business world, governments, and the general public and have caught everyone’s attention for good and bad. In this article, we will take a look at the cybersecurity trends that are likely to shape the industry in 2020.
Data security will be a top priority
Data is the new oil and data breaches will continue as long as data remains a valuable commodity. As organizations understand the negative impact of data breaches and with data security and privacy guidelines like the GDPR, mitigation of data breaches through heightened and proactive web application security measures will be a top priority for organizations.
Cloud security measures for end-user trust
As the confidence in cloud computing is increasing and more business processes, infrastructure, and data are moving to the cloud, new challenges have emerged. Cloud-based security threats owing to misconfigured security measures have seen a stark increase in the past 2 years. In 2020, cloud-based service providers will include stricter security measures, intelligent, managed WAFs and security testing features as an integral part of their offerings for improved end-user trust.
With the rise in cloud adoption, one of the key aspects to keep in mind is infrastructure security. It is provided by cloud vendors, but the business is responsible for the security of the workloads (specifically apps) hosted in the cloud. 2020 will see such shared security models being strengthened.
AI will be a double-edged sword
AI-augmented by ML has been enabling organizations and cybersecurity teams to consolidate security measures and strengthen threat detection mechanisms through deep learning algorithms and other AI frameworks.
On the other end, cyber-attackers and criminals have also been proactively leveraging AI and ML to supercharge their attacks through enhanced network snooping and testing capabilities. As a result, 2020 will see much larger and sophisticated attacks.
This will drive organizations to explore and deploy advanced heuristic solutions such as AppTrana rather than relying on attack signatures and known vulnerabilities.
Focus on third-party vendor security
The cybersecurity trends of the past couple of years have made it amply clear that an organization’s cybersecurity is highly contingent upon and only as good as the level of security of their third-party vendors. More organizations will and must diligently assess the cybersecurity measures of their third-party vendors, forcing smaller vendors to be proactive about security.
Increasing risk owing to mobile devices, BYOD and IoT devices
Organizations increasingly allowing employees to use personal devices for work, offering tools to work on mobile devices and even encouraging the Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) culture to minimize their own costs and increase productivity by elevating employee flexibility through remote work and leveraging the gig economy. Together these contain a wealth of business data and confidential customer data. This has increased security risks exponentially. Organizations will focus on putting in protocols for device and vulnerability management and strengthening endpoint security.
Increasing IoT devices – A wealth of security blunders
There is a marked increase in the number of IoT devices (wearables, home automation products, etc.) which are also being leveraged incrementally by cyber-attackers to orchestrate large-scale DDoS attacks. 2020 will see more efforts to reduce risks related to IoT devices.
State-sponsored attacks to increase
The trend of cyber-attacks, especially DDoS attacks, and zero-day attacks, sponsored by nation-states against opponents (other nation-states, dissident voices, etc.) to create misinformation, steal confidential information/ intelligence/ state or industrial secrets, cyberwarfare, influence opinions, etc. would only increase in 2020. Governments and large organizations must deploy advanced security solutions to eliminate these threats.
Automation and integration in cybersecurity
With the rising need for agility and proactiveness among security professionals and developers to maintain high levels of cybersecurity, the shift towards automation and integration for repetitive and basic security tasks will continue. This will increase the productivity of these professionals and enable them to focus more on advanced and challenging tasks rather than grunt work.
Increasing cybersecurity spends, growing industry and widening skill gap
With increasing awareness among organizations of all kinds about the gravity and severity of cybersecurity challenges facing them, 2020 will see an increase in their spending for cybersecurity. The industry will grow as a result.
There will also be a rising demand for more security experts across the different stages of development and there will be more CISOs in the boardroom. The demand will far exceed the supply of qualified experts, leading to a widening skill gap, which will lead to smaller organizations looking to SaaS vendors and technological solutions to meet this challenge.
Evergreen phishing and ransomware landscapes
Phishing attacks and ransomware attacks will remain an evergreen tool in the cyber attacker’s arsenal and an evergreen cybersecurity challenge for organizations and security professionals. The evolving technology landscape is enabling attackers to evolve sophisticated phishing methods to steal credentials, data and identities, distribute malware, crypto-jacking, eliciting fraudulent payments. Ransomware is a solid source of income for international cybercriminals. Organizations must leverage advanced and intelligent cybersecurity measures along with in-depth training for employees and other stakeholders for effective protection.
Ashish Pradhan is responsible for all technology functions like engineering, client services and customer support at Indusface. Prior to joining Indusface, Ashish held various senior leadership roles at Symantec Corporation in India and USA. During his 25 years of global experience in the software industry, Ashish has helped create and grow a broad variety of software products spanning systems management, IT compliance, and information security domains.