Cybersecurity is now one of the most pressing issues that businesses face regardless of the the industry that it's operating in. You no longer have to be a tech organisation to think about things like encryption and two-factor authentication because today, there is no business too small or too obscure to worry about strengthening your cybersecurity efforts in this dangerous digital world we're now living in.
Complicating matters is the fact that the concept of cybersecurity is in constant evolution. As the cyber threats we face grow in complexity, the techniques we use to defend ourselves must also do the same.
With that in mind, there are six key things where cybersecurity is headed that you absolutely need to know about to give you, your customers, and your very organisation the best chance to survive attacks moving forward.
1. The Government is Paying More Attention Than Ever
In the past years, a cyberattack was essentially ‘your problem’ — meaning it was up to you and your own internal teams to recognise the extent of the damage and protect yourself from having it happen again, etc. But when the stakes are as high as they've recently become, it was only a matter of time before governments began to play a more active role in what happens before, during, and after a security breach — as evidenced by new legislation being passed and taking effect around the world.
In Australia, for example, a new law that went into effect February 22 now fines businesses up to $1.8 million if they both fail to take the appropriate steps to protect themselves and fail to notify the public that a breach has occurred in time. Even directors could face fines of up to $360,000 on their own for each breach. So not only do you now have to worry about how your IT strategy affects your business from an internal perspective, you also have to worry about it from the perspective of possible government and compliance penalties, as well.
2. The Rise of Artificial Intelligence
Another key thing to know about the future of cybersecurity has to do with the rise of AI or artificial intelligence. AI in general is about to become a critical part of cybersecurity — both for positive and negative reasons.
Artificial intelligence can already be used to defend a cyber infrastructure in a more holistic and logical way than ever before. For example, hackers can use it to increase the depth and severity of their own attacks. It's not unrealistic to picture an era not too long from now where cyberattacks are not a matter of ‘businesses versus hackers but ‘AIs versus AIs’. When this happens, you can expect the consequences of a breach to increase as a result.
3. A Cyberattack No Longer Requires Massive Technical Knowledge
People used to think of hackers as strange, rogue computer geniuses sitting in a proverbial Batcave somewhere, executing sophisticated cyber attacks all day, every day. But today, this isn't actually true anymore.
While it’s still true that attacks are getting harder to predict and defeat, you no longer really need any type of technical knowledge at all to pull one off. Ransomware isn't just more profitable than other types of attacks, for example — it's far easier to execute as well, even if you're a novice. As a result, you can expect the frequency of these types of attacks to increase moving forward.
4. The IoT Will Make It Harder to Defend Yourself
While it's true that the Internet of Things will bring with it a host of advantages in terms of cybersecurity, it will also bring some downsides with it as well. With so many different devices all connected to the Internet, your enterprise is about to explode beyond what you probably thought was possible — meaning it's also going to get harder to defend.
Every device connected to the Internet is a potential vulnerability just waiting to be taken advantage of by someone who knows what they're doing. As the scope of your IoT-enabled supply chains begins to expand and becomes increasingly integrated with your other supply chain vendors, the door is more open to attacks than ever. It is up to you to take the appropriate steps in response.
5. Will the Internet Become Harder to Use?
There are two major schools of thought when it comes to a more secure internet that we're now building. There are those who believe that for the internet to be truly effective, it must remain safe and easy-to-use. But there are those who also think that these two things might not necessarily be possible at the same time.
As features like two-factor authentication, encryption and others become more important, they also make our digital lives slightly less convenient at the same time. Protection is more than worth the effort (especially when, again, the stakes are just so high), but oftentimes people aren't willing to use any type of technology that is even slightly inconvenient.
So a battle is about to play out between ‘convenience at all costs’ and ‘protection at all costs’. These two warring ideologies have a lot in common, but there is also certainly no clear winner at this point. It will be interesting to see how things shape out a few years from now on that front.
6. The Need for MSPs
Finally, one of the most critical things that you can understand about the future of cybersecurity is that an MSP is about to become even more valuable to your business than it already is. IT security is quickly reaching the point where even the largest infrastructures simply do not have the resources to adequately handle this problem on its own.
A managed service provider can not only help secure your business IT, your data, and your operations in a way that helps fend off the next cyber attack, it can also provide you with what you need to bring these disparate resources together, allowing them to function as parts of a larger and more critical whole.
Any situation where you can guarantee both that your enterprise remains protected and that your employees can work ‘smarter, not harder’ on a daily basis is one worth investigating. This is exactly what you get by partnering with an MSP in ways that you aren't likely to find anywhere else.
Powernet: Your Partner in IT Strategy
At Powernet, we firmly believe that it's clear from today’s trends that the days of having a passive, reactive approach to cybersecurity are long over. A business cannot afford to simply wait around for something bad to happen and then focus on recovery. You need to work all day, every day to stay one step ahead and work on prevention rather than after solutions. Because truth be told, these hackers going to be doing the exact same thing.
If you'd like to find out more information about the future of cybersecurity or its continued evolution over the next few years, or if you have any other pressing questions that you'd like to get answers to, contact Powernet today.