With cyber attacks becoming more common and more complex and with new vulnerabilities being regularly exposed, many CSOs and COs around the world have spent billions of dollars preparing themselves for the worst.
In fact, a recent report from Cybersecurity Ventures predicts that the global spending on cybersecurity products and services would exceed $1 trillion from 2017 to 2021. This significant spending is aimed to deter various cyber threats – such as mobile phishing through SMS messages – with damages predicted to cost the world $6 trillion annually by 2021 – up from $3 trillion in 2015.
However, aside from the increased spending and potential damages, other changes in the cybersecurity landscape will impact the security posture of organizations in the years to come. This is according to the 2018 Study on Global Megatrends in Cybersecurity, a survey sponsored by Raytheon and conducted by the Ponemon Institute, which indicates cyber extortion or ransomware attacks will increase in frequency, as will nation-state attacks and cyber warfare over the next three years.
To know more about the findings of this research, we detail in this infographic the latest and biggest shifts and trends that are bound to shape the global cybersecurity scene in 2018 and beyond.
1. Increased Data Breach Accidents from Unsecured IoT Devices
With more than 50 billion devices expected to be connected to the Internet over the next few years, it comes as no surprise that cybercriminals are increasingly looking to exploit them. As the Internet of Things (IoT) becomes a reality, businesses are competing to stay ahead. And more often than not, adopting cheap products and services means overlooking security and privacy measures.
According to the research from Ponemon Institute, data breaches from an unsecured IoT device in the workplace are predicted to become more rampant over the next three years. 82% of respondents anticipate unsecured IoT devices will likely cause a data breach in their organizations. 80% say such an incident could be catastrophic
2. Cyber Extortion and Data Breaches to Increase in Frequency
2017 was described as the year of the data breach. According to Risk Based Security, there were over 5,000 publicly disclosed data breaches in 2017 with 7.8 billion records disclosed, making last year the worst ever regarding frequency and severity – which is likely to continue in 2018.
The same research from Ponemon Institute reveals that 67% of respondents believe that the risk of cyber extortion and data breaches will increase in occurrence over the next few years.
Furthermore, 66% believe that data breaches will severely diminish their company’s shareholder value, while 60% of respondents predict that nation-state attacks against commercial and government institutions will worsen and could lead to cyber warfare in the future – up from 22% who believe that the threat already exists.
3. More IT Security Professionals Doubt Their Organization’s Cybersecurity Capabilities
With cyber threats becoming more complex and more common, more and more IT security professionals have become more pessimistic about the cybersecurity measures their organizations have in place. In fact, from the same study from Ponemon Institute, it was revealed that 54% of respondents believe their cybersecurity posture will either stay the same (35% of respondents) or deteriorate (19% of respondents).
On the other hand, 58% of respondents believe the problem of not having an expert cyber staff will worsen, and 46% of respondents believe artificial intelligence will not reduce the need for experts in cybersecurity.
This is despite the fact that more and more companies are investing in big data analytics, threat intelligence sharing, engaging the service of managed service providers (MSS). This only means that many organizations would still rely on their in-house workforce for their cybersecurity needs in the years to come.
4. Cyber Warfare and Breaches Will Have the Greatest Negative Impact on Organizations
The cyberattack on the Equifax credit reporting agency in 2017, which led to the theft of Social Security numbers, birth dates, and other data of over 143 million in the US, was a stark reminder that hackers are thinking big when it comes to targets. Therefore, companies that process sensitive information should shore up their measures in 2018 and forward.
According to the Ponemon Institute study, only 22% of respondents say cyber warfare is currently a high risk. However, over the next three years, 51% of respondents say it will be a high risk. Today, 43% of respondents rate the risk of breaches involving high-value information as very high, and 71% of respondents say the risk will be very high over the next three years.
5. Cybersecurity as Strategic Priority
Despite the increasing cyber threats, many organizations do not consider cybersecurity as a strategic priority. In fact, only 36% of respondents say their senior leadership believes cybersecurity is a strategic priority. This is in line with another finding from the study which indicates that 68% of respondents say their boards of directors are not being briefed on what their organizations are doing to avoid or mitigate the consequences of a cyber attack
Based on another Ponemon Institute research, a business with a robust cyber security posture can support innovation and reduce the cost to respond to data breaches and cybercrime, as determined by the deployment of specific practices and technologies.
Therefore, while organizations innovate and make significant changes in their operations, it is also crucial for them to treat cybersecurity as company strategy, a necessary investment and cost of doing business.
6. More Focus on Regulatory Compliance
To protect the public from the cyber threats that are facing most organizations, governments across the world have established wide-ranging data protection regulations – such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation.
These regulations mandate that organizations invest in technologies that will enable them to keep and protect their customer’s data effectively. Due to the increasing occurrence of data breaches, those who have not yet achieved regulatory compliance will be faced with costly class-action lawsuits and tort litigation.
As cyber threats get more rampant and sophisticated, it is now more crucial for organizations to stay vigilant about their personal, corporate, and government cybersecurity measures. A thorough assessment of their communication practice and their messaging platform’s capabilities is a must to ensure that their organization would not be an easy target for attackers.
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