Cybersecurity is at the top of every business’s — and CISO’s — to-do list. But as our future becomes increasingly connected, with everything from cell phones to ATMs to self-driving cars, so do threats against that infrastructure. By 2022, more enterprises will be targets than ever before, especially small businesses; hackers and other cybercriminals will likely hit up these security weak points, because success is less complicated when it’s easier to reach an already easily accessible goal.
What’s more, enterprises will learn how to better protect themselves against cybersecurity threats; and the world will become more familiar with, and comfortable with, the concept of cyberattacks and cyberwarfare. But by and large, cyberattacks — and cybersecurity — will become increasingly complex, and our efforts at combating this growing problem will likely include partnerships with the government, and the introduction of mandatory cybersecurity standards.
While there will be more focus on preventing attacks before they’re even attempted, today’s rise in cybersecurity attacks will result in more cases of cybersecurity breaches. Expect to see the development of stronger solutions that can aid in helping to mitigate the damage done by a breach, or to keep businesses and consumers protected in the event of one. And the rise of the Internet of Things (IoT) will usher in a number of privacy and security concerns about the amount of information being collected and stored about consumers and businesses, and the costs that that information may end up creating. Let’s take a look at some of the top cybersecurity trends you should be aware of for 2022 and beyond.
1. One billion smartphones will have some type of security issue.
While some of us are probably quite familiar with the concept of having credit card information stolen when a point-of-sale (POS) machine is hacked, it’s not often that we think of our smartphones doing the same thing. However, a lot of businesses and even government organizations are storing personal information on their employees’ smartphones, and thus storing the same personal information they’re also using for securing their POS systems.
For business owners and managers, especially those who do business with other businesses, this means it’s likely that they’re providing a plethora of personal data to their clients — and, potentially, to hackers.
2. Cyberattacks on physical infrastructure will become much more common.
Already, most companies make the case that physical infrastructure is becoming increasingly vulnerable. Increasingly, IoT devices are being connected to larger and larger networks that, despite being meant to provide a more decentralized, and more secure, system, are actually creating new security vulnerabilities.
3. Standards for IoT devices
Consumers may soon have to accept the idea that the Wi-Fi-enabled lightbulbs and thermostats they’re using are not secure. These “smart” devices will be given to people for free and, as it stands, if people aren’t careful about how they’re using these devices — that is, by uploading their personal information to the cloud or making calls and using services that may violate their privacy — they could be giving hackers a leg up in breaking into their devices in the first place.
4. More CIOs will be held accountable for cybersecurity failures
Over the past few years, CEOs have learned the hard way that it’s almost impossible to be both a visionary and a cybersecurity expert. Thus, more and more CIOs will be held accountable for failing to invest in cybersecurity correctly. Because cybersecurity breaches are now common, companies will be less willing to allow CEOs to take the fall for security incidents. Expect to see the number of companies being sued for failure to take cybersecurity seriously grow.
To keep up with the pace of digital innovation and stay on the cutting edge, CIOs should start thinking about how they can expand their cybersecurity knowledge, strengthen their own organizational security, and become more agile. The more you can stay ahead of the curve, the better positioned you will be to adapt to the new realities in the coming years.
5. Cybercrime will reach into emerging industries
The IoT devices that businesses have been purchasing for a few years are being used to attack critical infrastructure — such as power plants and hospitals. As these devices become embedded in our homes, we will have to be even more vigilant to make sure we don’t become a victim of digital robbery. Likewise, we should be more mindful about the information we give up when we’re doing transactions online.
In this future world, the idea of someone being unable to break into your home or car because of the level of security you’ve deployed is an interesting idea. However, given the ease with which hackers can compromise a system today, it’s likely that we’ll see more security breaches involving personal information in the coming years.
The year ahead will be exciting for cybersecurity, no matter what the industry. It’ll be a great opportunity to learn more about how your company is keeping you and your customers safe and about the threats your company should be concerned about.
With this knowledge in hand, business owners can act on the knowledge to start preparing now for the inevitable cybersecurity threats that are coming our way.
The long-term potential of the IoT seems limitless. But until IoT devices actually enter the mainstream, it’s hard to predict exactly what those devices will be used for and where their vulnerabilities will be. From the perspective of a cybersecurity analyst, this unpredictability will create more work and uncertainty in the coming years — no matter what part of the security industry you work in. By taking on this mindset, you will become better equipped to work in an unpredictable environment, and gain a better understanding of the opportunities and challenges ahead.
Organizations that work to keep their customers’ information secure, and hold themselves accountable for protecting the data they hold on their customers, will be well positioned to do well in a world that’s becoming increasingly dependent on digital devices.
We can help. The Launchpad is partnered with the most innovative cybersecurity providers in the space.