Preparing for dynamic security changes in the new year
Well, we blinked, and 2021 is almost over (as of writing this article). With a couple of months in a vaguely calmer year, a whole new host of challenges is on the horizon. Cybersecurity remains one of them, and already predictions are developing for what will pose the biggest threats to people and professional industries alike. Ideas like these coincide with the occurrences of both 2020 and 2021, while keeping an eye on expanding IT trends.
Of course, they’re predictions only. But it benefits anyone to mind the tide of what could be. From expert organizations like FireEye, McAfee and us at Bytagig, here are potential trends to keep a lookout for.
A quick glance at 2021
In terms of the IT world, 2021 was chaotic, to put it mildly. In summation, we saw:
- An explosion of ransomware and malware attacks
- A surge of remote working infrastructure due in majority to the COVID-19 pandemic
- Attacks on critical infrastructure and a realization of new malware norms
- Expansion of simple RaaS resources, creating additional threats
It was clear, and still is, that sophisticated attacks of brutal nature can be capably deployed by small factions of attackers. Information is acquirable on the darkweb. Ransomware-as-a-service is a common factor. So, we’ve got our work cut out for us.
Trends in 2022
First off, while the avalanche of malicious antics is certainly overwhelming, a slow but steady pushback is forming. Ranging from educating the general and working public to forming comprehensive retaliation, there is a concentrated effort to address the threatscape.
Therefore, you can absolutely expect trends to surround investing in cybersecurity resources. Not just from the federal government, by the private sector too. Entities like Microsoft are already looking to address the cybersecurity worker shortage by offering educational programs and career paths for those interested.
Social media and malicious operations
Social media plays a devastating role in malicious operations. It’s another avenue of phishing, and phishing is the ideal trojan horse to deliver ransomware payloads. Evolving from simple emails, social media can launch dangerous campaigns in seconds from platforms like Twitter. This trend is expected to continue well into 2022.
Federal entities leveraging cybercriminals
It’s not far-fetched to assume government entities from around the world will utilize malware gangs. Considering the power and disruption of ransomware, the reasons are easy to see why. Ransomware can disable critical services for days, and if you want to hurt a geopolitical foe, chaos is key.
Consider the parallel to that too. Were a nation-state to disrupt operations of another country through any other means, that would be considered a hostile act (short of war declarations, even). But when you can point to a criminal entity, deniability is easy.
Shorter response times
Your chances to deal with intrusions and malware threats will be diminished to hours, whereas before it might take days. Patching and enforcing zero-trust policies are the only workarounds, for now. It’s also more the reason to develop proactive response plans and defense measures.
Ransomware entering mainstream discussion
It seems like a strange thing to applaud, but ransomware becoming a common subject is a good thing. More awareness leads to increased prevention. Even if the general public doesn’t have every bit of information regarding malware and ransomware, proactive knowledge is still key. It shows that cybersecurity is transitioning from a niche subject understood by experts to something more general.
Increase in cryptocurrency schemes
Cryptocurrency is on the rise, and an ideal revenue source for hackers. We’ve already seen problems with the rise of crypto scams and the implementation of NFTs. A continued reliance on these for income flows will surge in 2022.
What other trends do you expect to see regarding cybersecurity in 2022?