The digital revolution has taken over all businesses, whether large or small, organisations, corporations and even governments, all now rely on computerised systems for the management of their daily activities. This makes it more important than ever that cybersecurity become a major goal when safeguarding data from the numerous online attacks. As each day passes, new technologies are introduced, this leads to a constant shift in cybersecurity trends, as ransomware, data breaches and password hacks become the norm. Below you will find the most common trends in the cybersecurity arena, right now.
- The Rise of Automotive Hacking
Virtually every modern vehicle you can purchase comes with a vast array of automated software. These programs are created for seamless connectivity for whoever is driving, for engine timing, cruise control, airbags, door locks, and other advanced driver assistance systems. Cars today come jam-packed with Wi-Fi technologies and Bluetooth for communication, which leaves the vehicle vulnerable to new threats from hackers. Automotive hijacking or using the cars microphone to eavesdrop are two cybersecurity threats that are predicted to rise in the near future. Autonomous or self-driving vehicles is another feature made possible by sophisticated software, for this reason, cybersecurity measures must become a main priority for it.
- Poor Cyber Hygiene
When we talk about cyber hygiene, we’re referring to the various practices and habits around technology use, whether it be the implementation of safeguards like multi-factor authentication or VPN, the avoidance of unprotected wireless networks etc. The unfortunate reality is that most users pay very little attention to their own habits while using computer systems.
Today, over 60% of companies or organisations rely on human memory for the management of their passwords, with 42% of organisations choosing to use sticky notes as a valid memorisation technique. More than 50% of company accounts are accessible without the requirement of two-factor authentication. With personal accounts using two-factor authentication at around a paltry 37%.
Only 45% of computer users in America state that they would create a new password in the event that they fell victim to a data breach, with only 35% of PC users saying they regularly change their passwords.
- Potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI)
We have witnessed a massive change in the cybersecurity arena, thanks to the implementation of AI in all market segments along with machine learning. AI has been used quite prominently in the creation of automated security systems, face detection, natural language processing, automatic threat detection and more. This in addition to its use for the development of smart attacks and malware, created to bypass even the most advanced security protocols used in protecting data. AI enabled threat detection systems are capable of predicting when an attack may take place, notifying the end user in advanced.
- Shortage in Cybersecurity Skills
Due to the global situation, there was a rapid move to remote work, this in turn increased the workloads for current IT professionals, and additionally there was also a rapid climb in the number of ransomware attacks. These two factors today have led to a burnout of security professionals at many companies.
The shortage of skilled cybersecurity professionals in the UK has increased by an additional 30% over the past 12 months, according to recent reports carried out by firm Harvey Nash. This study looked at the current state of job shortages in the digital field, and found that cybersecurity work is amongst the most sought after tech skill in the UK today. Over 40% of all UK digital firms, confessed that they had a shortage of skilled labour in this particular area.
- Cloud Vulnerabilities
Many people felt that, over the many years, the cloud would inevitably become more secure, however, the reality seemed to pan out quite differently. Reports from IBM have discovered cloud vulnerabilities have actually increased by over 150% in the last couple of years. Verizon’s DBIR found that over 90% of 29,000 breaches that have occurred over the past couple of years, were as a result of a web app breach.
Gartner reports that cloud security is now amongst the fastest growing cybersecurity market area, with an increase of 41% from 595 million in 2020, to over $841 million a year later.
While many experts predict that eventually, the numbers of people working in the office will rival that, prior to the pandemic, with the constant discovery of new variants, it’s possible that this situation could drag on for some time. This means, the threat of cloud security incidents are likely to continue for the foreseeable future.
- Targeted Ransomware
Targeted ransomware is another cybersecurity trend that we couldn’t ignore even if we wanted to. This is especially the case in the more developed nations, as their industries are heavily reliant on certain software’s to execute daily activities. These ransomware targets tend to be much focused, such as the WannaCry attack on the National Health Service hospitals in Scotland and England, which corrupted the data of more than 70,000 health devices. Though, in most cases, a ransomware attack involves a hacker threatening to expose confidential data in return for a paid sum, they are still capable of affecting large scale companies and in some cases, entire nations.
- Sponsored Cyber Warfare
One thing we know for sure is that there won’t be any stopping between both the West and the East, in their attempt to gain superiority over the other. There have been cases of tension between US, China and Iranian hackers, of past years, although the attacks have been quite few. These attacks however, over the years have had quite a significant impact on certain events such as the elections.
And with the increasing number of elections that are set to occur, over the next couple of years, we can expect a surge in the amount of criminal activity. Such things as high profile data preaches, industrial and political secrets are things we should expect to top the trends for this year, and those to follow. When we couple this, with the current happenings between the West and East, we can only expect things to get worse.