4 Cybersecurity Trends to Watch for in 2020

Posted by CBM on Dec 11, 2019 3:45:40 PM

You’re always looking for ways to improve operations, boost ROI, and strengthen partnerships. Why does IT take a backseat? Why is your tech infrastructure going stale when the bulk of your organization’s work happens on digital platforms?

Many businesses aren’t equipped for the new generation of security threats simply because they’re not aware of what’s out there.

We’re here to help you stay informed. Watch out for these trends in cybersecurity that might impact your business.

 

Phishers are getting bigger and better

Phishing attacks aren’t going anywhere. While you’re focused on staying productive, phishers are doing push-ups and learning sneakier ways to infiltrate your inbox. These expert hackers are making a lucrative business out of zero-day ransomware and malware attacks.

They used to be easy to identify. You could once tell from a suspicious-looking email address or excessive typos. Trust us when we say that they’ve evolved. More and more phishers are using geo-targeting to create highly personalized phishing threats, some imitating your colleagues and appearing to make genuine—and seemingly harmless—requests.

Forward-thinking businesses are responding by adopting security awareness programs. Some train their employees during the onboarding process, and others initiate regularly scheduled company-wide training. Cybersecurity only works if everyone is aware, prepared and involved.

 

Mobile devices are more vulnerable than ever

Even with military-grade firewalls, your company is still vulnerable. Hackers always find a way, and these days, they’re targeting us through our weaker devices: namely, smartphones.

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Why are IoT devices so susceptible to modern hackers? Think about how many times you’ve jumped on free public Wi-Fi in the last week. Consider how many hours of the day you’re using the web on your phone, how often you change your app passwords, and how many people don’t have anti-virus protection on their phones.

This should raise some red flags about the always-plugged state we live in. Many of us never even log out of our apps or shut off our phones.

When the Ponemon Institute released its State of Endpoint Security Risk Report in 2018, we found out that 64% of organizations suffered from zero-day attacks that were launched on their endpoints.

Our firewalls aren’t working as well as they used to, and our recovery time needs to improve, too. Even after you realize your devices are vulnerable, it takes a while to get the latest security patches. That leaves plenty of time for hackers to access your device.

How do you bring security back to your IoT devices? Overhaul your traditional defences with endpoint detection and response (EDR) capabilities. EDR platforms monitor endpoint and network events, and they record information in one central database. There’s a diversity of options for EDR platforms with varying capabilities but in general, they should:

  • Monitor online and offline endpoints
  • Unify endpoint data
  • Increase visibility throughout your whole IT environment
  • Detect malware and store endpoint events
  • Respond to events in real-time
  • Integrate with additional security tools

 

Your Shadow IT is at risk

Shadow IT, or Stealth IT, refers to applications, software, or projects that are used without organizational approval or your IT department’s knowledge. In a nutshell, Shadow IT is anything digital that’s unsanctioned. This can include unapproved Excel macros, messaging apps (anything from Slack to Snapchat) being used on company devices, and even cloud storage like Dropbox or Google Drive.

What happens when a hacker infiltrates one of these applications on your company computer? A while back, Gartner warned us that one-third of cyberattacks will use your Shadow IT to target your business.

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Start cracking down on Shadow IT use. If your employees are well-educated on the risks of using unsanctioned IT—risks that could threaten their own financial security or work progress—they might actually take your warnings seriously.

 

Businesses are spending more on cybersecurity & managed IT

Everyone should be upgrading their defences, but spending more money isn’t the be-all-end-all solution. We’re seeing businesses spend, on average, 24% of their cybersecurity budget on endpoint security—which is great, but many are left with a false sense of total security. Many of these endpoint security solutions are still flawed, fragile, and degrade quickly.

Spending more on company-wide cybersecurity doesn’t solve the problem on an individual scale. We’ve already highlighted the importance of cybersecurity training, and we’ll say it again. The most important upgrade of all is a skills upgrade for everyone in your organization.

Skills acquisition and knowledge transfer are investments that are just as critical as your technology investments. So are investments you make in professional services like managed IT support services and consulting.

Have more questions about cybersecurity? Check out our other blog posts here. Or, check out this page to learn more about common IT problems.

Topics: Managed IT, Cybersecurity, IT Services Edmonton, IT Management

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