Cybersecurity Trends And Threats In 2020
Cyber-risks are nothing new and in 2020, there are newer threats that need to be on everyone’s radar. Given most countries have begun adopting online infrastructure for a greater number of purposes, more and more data is saved and stored online and in the cloud. This has made data breaches and other digital attacks even bigger and more frequent.
Unfortunately, we are at a phase where state-approved cyberattacks and political interference in user data are increasing at an alarming rate.
There isn’t any permanent fix to these cybersecurity threats because they come in different forms targeting newly emergent technologies.
However, technical advancements in the fields of machine learning (ML), artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, and more will play a major role in the cybersecurity industry this year.
Irrespective of the newer tactics, here are the most common cyberattacks:
- Malware – It can be in the form of executable code, scripts, and attachments. These codes might contain Trojans, adware, viruses, ransomware, spyware, or shareware.
- Phishing – It is mostly done through URL mirroring or scamming users to fill in private information.
- Man-In-The-Middle Attack – Also known as eavesdropping, the hacker mostly controls the online chat between two individuals.
- DOS Attack – In this type of attack, you’ll be bombarded with unnecessary applications aimed at consuming system resources to the extent that a system fails to fulfill the legitimate requests.
- SQL Injection Attack – This will run malicious SQL (structured query language) codes and overcome the security measures that you might have set for applications.
In addition to the above, some other commonly used cyberthreats include Drive-by download attack, Password attack, Credential Reuse attack, Cross-site Scripting (CSS) attack, and Zero-Day attack among others.
The Hot Topics in The 2020 Cybersecurity Arena
Although the newer threats are aimed at evolving technologies, the patterns of most of the cyberattacks remain the same. As per tech experts, the 2020 cybersecurity ecosystem is all about AI, 5G, and the IoT (Internet of Things). Government and private agencies are also looking forward to the East-West divide and rethinking the implications and security of expanding cloud-based technology.
The rise of the internet made way for artificial intelligence. As of now, AI is used to boost organizational cybersecurity by leveraging existing data to detect potential vulnerabilities. One of the biggest concerns with AI is its use. While companies can use it to identify cyber threats, hackers can also use it to automate these attacks on a larger scale.
That said, AI-based technology is currently used for:
- Accelerating threat detection by using advanced analytics
- Identifying potential security threats based on existing vulnerabilities
- Prioritizing and ranking the threat levels
- Automating and increasing the threat response rate
A subtle cyber cold war is currently underway as Eastern and Western forces gradually divide their intelligence and technology. The current trade conflict between the US and China, and the decoupling of these two major economies, is a strong indication. Russia and China are deepening their influence on the EU states and this poses another major problem in global cyber security.
Western officials and academics involved in the talks have already said that negotiations on cyberthreats between the East and the West have become more complicated and complex than any other topic. With this rising threat, it is pivotal that every nation starts strengthening cyber defenses across critical infrastructure.
Targeted content aimed at spreading propaganda and fake news has become extremely common. This trend seems to increase substantially during elections or other campaigns across nations.
Recently, Europeans have shown signs of acceptance that the Russians had meddled in their political affairs, from cyberattacks on EU companies to mild interference in elections. The Chinese government has also been alleged of pushing the pro-China agenda in Taiwan. In the US and France, private emails of candidates were hacked and shared during the 2016 and 2017 elections. Governments are now forced to reconsider cybersecurity measures while engaging in targeted campaigns to raise public awareness and battle this threat.
5G And IoT
5G networks have started rolling out in select locations. Owing to this, the use of IoT devices will also increase massively. This increase will lead to more vulnerabilities for hackers to feed on. Cybersecurity experts call it the multi-vector 5G cyberattack
Most IoT devices and their individual connections to the cloud exhibit minimal to moderate security at best. This is a potential weak link that opens multiple back doors for hackers to push in malware and other advanced threats. As more and more users connect, cloud servers are getting overpopulated with data, and these need enhanced security against modern cyberthreats.
Rethinking Cloud-Based Technology
Many businesses are opting for cloud-based tech mainly because it is cost-effective and scalable. Service providers ensure encryption, data backup, and other security features, but the modern-day threat demands prevention, not just protection. As multiple users across the globe use commonly shared drives and files, it opens a major gateway for cybercriminals to launch ransomware, keyloggers, and other DOS attacks.
Cloud service providers must rethink the cybersecurity aspects given the increases in data storage with each passing day and newer vulnerabilities springing up. They should invest in developing flexible, adaptive, and real-time security features that offer advanced security, enhanced threat detection, and removal.
The cybersecurity demands in 2020 aren’t the same as those of 2019. Although most attack patterns remain the same, the threats and their potential impact have evolved.
Besides, other factors like political interference and international interdependence along with the rise of modern-day tech like AI and ML, 5G, IoT, and cloud-based tech has also opened doorways to newer, more advanced threats.
Individual and federal data are at risk, primarily because almost every country has moved its data to online infrastructure.
While advancements like AI and ML have helped companies counter these new threats by leveraging existing data and automating major detection processes, this also has led to a much bigger problem – automated cyberattacks.
Understanding what lies ahead will help you better prepare. The speed at which technology advances will force you to take a moment and consider how you wish to secure your data in 2020 and the years to come.