vCloud Tech recently published an article on Top 10 Cyber Security Threats and how to Mitigate the Risk, where we highlighted research from a security firm that 81 global firms in 81 different countries reported data breaches in the first half of 2020 alone with 80% of firms seeing an increase in cybersecurity attacks this year. Phishing cybersecurity attacks have also seen a drastic increase of 600% since the end of February and attacks rose 148% in March and the average ransomware payment rose by 33% to $111,605 as compared to Q4 2019. (Source: Security Boulevard).
Even with increasing cyber threats, most organizations are challenged to mitigate cybersecurity risk. A common assumption is that a hacker sitting on a PC trying to get into their bank account, or their organization’s computers being rendered unusable by ransomware. This also may span to an IT department at a financial organization trying to keep personal information secure from similar breaches where this data if compromised will result in revenue loss and reputation loss.
Cybersecurity risk, while a huge concern for most people and organizations but as of 2020, it is becoming a glaring personal and national security issue. As the risk continues to grow, it complicates and adds different layers to Cybersecurity, and mitigating such risks cannot be managed by one tool fit for all. That is why with tons of moving parts, each organization requires a custom-tailored solution to mitigate cybersecurity threats. In this article, we are going to cover what cybersecurity is, what types of cybersecurity solutions are out there, why cybersecurity is important, the risks that governments, the private sector, and individuals face, and what the future may hold for the industry.
What Is Cybersecurity?
As I briefly referenced where most organizations are challenged with the complex and multiple layers of cybersecurity, the most important goal is the protection of your data and information. This information contains credentials for email, bank accounts, social security numbers, and other personal information. The data can also be used as a blueprint for your organization’s design and trade secrets, such as a business opportunity or the new product your organization is trying to launch.
Cybersecurity has many aspects to it which include keeping your organization’s servers, networks that hold both business and personal information secure. This means network cybersecurity tools are designed to make sure that your organization’s network is protected, and that employees are informed that hackers will try to trick them into revealing passwords and login information possibly over the phone, email, or direct network attacks. The consequences of having your organization’s information stolen by hackers can lead to anything from identity theft to the loss of millions of dollars in future product sales.
As cybersecurity includes the security of such a variety of digital assets, including systems, intellectual property, data, and information, cybersecurity as an industry also has many different types of tools, skill sets, and career paths. Examples of cybersecurity skillset that you may find in the industry are security engineer, security architect, security analyst, security administrator, security software developer cryptographer, network engineer, network administrator, cryptanalyst, security consultant, and forensic analyst. Each of these skillsets helps manage the different aspects to mitigate cybersecurity threats.
What are the Types of Cybersecurity Threats?
Check out our post Top 10 Cyber Security Threats in 2020 and How you can Mitigate the Risk to get a better idea but the major threats that an organization should focus on are covered below:
- Phishing:Phishing is a type of cybersecurity attack whereby the cybercriminal produces a fraudulent email, text, or website to trick a user into sharing sensitive personal information such as his or her login credentials for work, passwords to online credentials, or credit card information, etc.
- Malware:Malware is a type of malicious software designed to gain unauthorized access to your systems and to cause damage to a computer.
- Ransomware:Ransomware is a type of malicious malware software that is designed to extract money by blocking access to your systems, files, or workstations until the ransom is paid. Paying the ransom does not always guarantee that the system or workstation will be restored or the files will be recovered.
- Social Engineering:Social engineering is a tactic that cybercriminals use to trick people into revealing sensitive and personal information. Social engineering can be combined with any of the cyber threats listed above to make people more likely to click on links, download malware, or trust a malicious source.
Why Cybersecurity is Important
So, with everything explained above, Cybersecurity is essential as it covers everything that pertains to protecting our personal information, intellectual property, data, and governmental and industry information systems from theft and damage attempted by criminals and adversaries.
Because of the massive increase in cyberattacks and hacking attempts in 2020, cybersecurity has become an inevitable topic of discussion in the past several years. Events that arise in the cybersecurity industry can and often lead to global consequences and the possibility of catastrophic outcomes.
It now appears that monthly, and sometimes even weekly, there is a segment in the news devoted to discussing the results of a data breach at a major corporation or a notice that cybercriminals have taken over a local computer network and are holding it for ransom in exchange for vast sums of money. Depending on the people doing the hacking, aims and targets of the cybercriminals could be as simple as embezzling personal information from people who are using public Wi-Fi, or they could be more devastating such as shutting down a city’s traffic system or a country’s power grid to cause mass panic among the public.
Now that we have covered the importance of cybersecurity as part of today’s digital world, we can take a deeper look into what kind of cybersecurity is important, the risks that governments, organizations, and individuals face because of cyber threats, and what the future may hold for the cybersecurity industry. Let’s start by diving deeper into what kind of cybersecurity is important.
Importance of Internet Security
In 2020 with the global pandemic COVID19, most tasks nowadays are performed online, on our cell phones, laptops, and even tablets have become an extension of ourselves. Every aspect of our life has been digitized. Because of this internet cybersecurity has become a major concern in this digital era. This is very likely due to the cybercriminals and hackers that disguise themselves to take over your workstations and steal sensitive data and personal information.
This is why having the best internet security is indispensable. Still, the bitter fact is that many web users are at high risk of a security breach. As soon as you start using the internet, you are always vulnerable to the prying eyes of hackers. One of the safest methods for an organization to protect its remote users is to have enterprise-grade and reliable internet security software used by many organizations and recommended like Trend Micro Internet Security. These watchful tools alert you when you are browsing an unsecured or malicious website among other enterprise-level features mitigating cybersecurity risks.
Importance of Information Security
For many organizations, information is their most important asset as their entire future projects, product designs, and financial information can be available on an online infrastructure. So securing your data from cybercriminals is crucial. Information security is “the procedure of avoiding unauthorized use, access, modification, inspection, disclosure, disruption, recording or destruction of information”. Information can take many forms, such as electronic and physical but here we are focusing on the cybersecurity impact of it.
With an enormous rise in cybercrime, the cybersecurity landscape is becoming more complex and without a properly crafted cybersecurity plan, you leave your data open to be breached by cybercriminals. And to fully comprehend why online information cybersecurity is becoming more crucial than ever is the increase in the complexity of IT infrastructure, applications, and the users that are out there in the remote world. The current Corona Virus pandemic increased the number of remote workers where each organization is required to have a clear understanding of how to take care of overflowing cyber threats.
Importance of Network Security
According to the SANS Institute, employing network cybersecurity measures allows workstations, users, and programs to perform their permitted essential functions within a protected environment. SANS Institute provides training for security professionals. Network cybersecurity is the process of taking preventive measures to safeguard the essential networking infrastructure from unauthorized access, malfunction, misuse, modification, destruction, or improper disclosure. Network cybersecurity is essential for home networks as well as in organizational networks. Most households with high-speed internet access have one or even more wireless routers, which could be exploited by hackers if not properly protected. A reliable network cybersecurity solution helps reduce the risk of data loss, sabotage, and theft.
Cyber Threats Faced by Governments
It is easy to assume that most governments use the internet for one purpose or another which exposes them to risks that can be exploited by malicious actors or perpetrators. Another potential risk that countries are exposed to is possible government breaches. Such precedents have widely been witnessed around the globe. Mass connectivity, which is necessary for interoperability, also adds an extra layer of risk for the government and that reliance poses certain risks in our modern connected globe.
Cybersecurity Threats Faced by the Private Sector
Many of the risks governments encounter due to cybersecurity threats are faced equally by private organizations. Corporations are the common targets for intellectual property theft and can also be targeted for sophisticated ransomware attacks. Future projects, business plans, product designs, and even insider information can be robbed or compromised to be hacked. Whether a business is small, medium, or large, hackers can leverage their employee information if their systems are not backed by cybersecurity.
For almost all corporations, there is no way to entirely avoid these cybersecurity risks. Organizations in today’s world rely heavily on internet connectivity especially in 2020 due to work from home precautions, whether that be websites, VPNs for remote employees, or connections to vendor systems. This alone exposes the organizations to the possibility of cybercriminals targeting the official network and attempting to steal sensitive information. Companies can lose an enormous amount of time and capital if they are hacked or find that their information has been compromised.
The Future of Cybersecurity
Now that we have identified “Why Cybersecurity Is Important Now More Than Ever” and gone over how hackers can obtain, target, and use personal data, let’s explicate how the industry of cybersecurity solutions providers can change in the future to keep personal information as safe as possible. vCloud Tech is in contact with some of the world’s leading cybersecurity providers and here are some of the trends they have identified that will be prominent in the foreseeable future.
Cyber Security Automation:
One trend that will surely make an appearance is the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) tools to aid cybersecurity analysts in protecting networks and personal information.
Portable Devices Become Cyber Threats:
As more and more corporations are bringing tablets and phones into their list of used devices, these devices also need to be protected from cybercriminals, hackers, and other cyber threats.
IoT Becomes a Target for Hackers:
Hackers will begin to focus on smart devices that are not commonly thought of when defending your organization’s network. Internet of Things (IoT) devices are connected to the internet have started becoming a target for hackers when they are looking to break into networks or steal personal data.
Businesses Train Employees to Handle Social Engineering:
This was one of the most popular trends in 2019 and has picked up steam in 2020s remote work culture. More and more organizations are looking to train their employees on ways to safeguard their business data.
Cyber Concerns May Result in Increased Regulations and Legislation:
With the recent wave of cyberattacks both US and European government organizations are putting up legislations to make sure security protocols are met to secure data online.
Mitigate risk and secure your digital assets:
vCloud Tech helps many organizations assess current cybersecurity posture and provides solutions and services in partnership with the world’s top cybersecurity providers.
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