2017 saw a whole host of cyber threats and different changes in the field, from phishing attempts to higher spending for cybersecurity. As technology advances, cyberattacks are only expected to grow over time and adapt with these changes. Here are some threats that are anticipated to appear in 2018:
1. Ransomware revisited
One of the major trends from this year that’s expected to continue into the next year is the prevalence of ransomware. Ransomware wracked 2017, specifically going after high-ranking businesses, such as banks and those in charge of them, to hold information in exchange for money. Hackers employing the use of ransomware are expected to keep up with the practice into the new year. However, their targets are slowly shifting from large banks and those who manage intel property to other individuals.
2. Imminent dangers in IoT devices
Cyberattacks targeting your typical devices (laptops, desktop computer, smartphone, etc.) are not the only devices in hackers’ sights carrying into the new year. IoT, or Internet of Things, devices are predicted to continue suffering attacks due to easy accessibility. Devices such as printers or appliances, are not used to interact with the Internet in the same ways as other devices like laptops, for example, and therefore are commonly overlooked as a risk. Unfortunately, they can be used to glean damaging info – if your printer is hacked, for example, it can be used to view any documents that you’ve previously printed over the network. As more kinds of devices or appliances join the IoT, the more risks will be posed if they have less security than regular devices.
3. Security staff shortfalls
Spending on cybersecurity was a major trend that increased over the length of this year. Back in March, spending for 2017 was predicted to be as much as $90 billion. Since there is such a high investment in cybersecurity spending, it is little surprise that demand for cybersecurity professionals is a rising trend. In fact, as the online tool, Cyberseek, reports from 2016, there was an annual shortage of around 15,000 employees for information security analyst jobs, and a gap of approximately 200,000 for other cyber skills openings. These holes in cybersecurity employment are only expected to continue for 2018 as businesses are more commonly outsourcing their IT management and/or setting the bar high for their cybersecurity departments to reach.
4. Compromising the cloud
As companies are starting to rely on cloud-based storage systems, hackers have quickly realized that these storage areas are another exploitation opportunity. Microsoft released a report showing that from 2016-2017, there was a 300% increase in attacks on cloud-based user accounts. Companies that rely on continued development through cloud-based storage should be wary of this new increase in attacks as it is likely to continue as cloud systems advance.
- Frequently change your passwords on all devices and platforms. Doing this will provide you with added security. These benefits are especially true for IoT devices, which either come with no set protection or a generic default password set by the manufacturer, or in other words, easy hacking targets.
- Be sure to update your devices often. Regularly updating software and applications eliminates the opportunity for hackers to exploit old glitches and bugs to use against your devices.
- Create backups of data in case of cyberattacks like ransomware that can hold sets of info hostage. Backing up info now will save you time and money later in the event of a cyberattack.
Have more questions on growing cyber threats or developing security solutions for your devices? Contact us today to learn how we can help!