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It was always an unprecedented thought that internet will become something this imperious in our lives, so much that it is not a desire anymore or something which some people have, it has become a need, a necessity which must be there with everyone by default. However, there are still some elements out there who are trying to acquire benefits that are unjustified and illegal. In this context, cyber security has become a threat to not only individuals but also corporate giants.
One of the most perilous elements of cybersecurity is its constantly evolving nature. At present, cyber security threats such as ransomware, malware, social engineering and phishing exist. The future never seemed as alarming as it began to do by the year 2018. This was when there was an uproar in tech industry where companies like Spectre & Meltdown exposed vulnerabilities in the system.
Not only this, the biggest and most trusted brands such as Facebook, Amazon, Adidas, Cathay Pacific, Delta Airlines and many more suffered damaging and costly data breaches. All these news headlines beg the question that the years to come & beyond be even more perilous. Here are some predictions for the years to come:
Cybercriminals have transitioned from old desktop computer to high end SME server and it is expected to see them move on to virtualized environments in future by specifically targeting the hypervisor. This can also counter a defense that became quite eminent after high profile ransomware attacks in last few years such as running OS within a virtual machine to isolate it. Security researchers also do this as well to securitize and analyze malicious software’s without posing a risk to their own machines/systems.
However, hackers responded to that in 2017 by using Cerber ransomware, which could detect whether the OS was running on a virtual machine or not. The comfort of messing with the Linux, the widespread prevalence of virtualization and the defense of separation which virtual machines offer may lead to the next phase of the evolution of ransomware which is to target the hypervisor.
Given the global nature of threats and threat actors, and the possibility of nation-states funding, sanctioning, or actively initiating such endeavors, there is a clear need for protection to occur at a higher-order level than the edge, and the endpoint. It is predicted that we will see a much stricter internet, with geographic blocking at the public level as a rule
In 2019, supply chain attacks will escalate exponentially as large organizations, which already have enough trouble safeguarding their assets, open themselves to greater risk as they grow their reliance on partnerships. The results can be immensely catastrophic as one of the precedents is of the infamous 2013 Target breach was the result of an attack that had its origins through the retailer’s HVAC vendor.
Even more cautionary is the recent Bloomberg’s coverage on computer hardware manufacturer Super Micro. While the company itself with several big names such as Apple, Amazon and the Department of Homeland Security and many others denied that the Chinese spies planted secret chips on its motherboards to gather intelligence as a means of cyber espionage.
These alarmingly dangerous situations, many organizations that rely on third parties have created vendor risk management processes such as log access and retention, policies around constant monitoring within their organizations.
The augmenting cooperation between the EU and US on regulating privacy, custodianship and information flow is the sign of things to come. It is predicted that in 2019 we will see the beginning of a global framework for regulating data, either in the form of new legislation put forward by the UN, evolving Privacy Shield, or a merger of multiple frameworks.
Organizations today are aware of the future and no longer willing to be a hacker’s low-hanging fruit, small to midsized organizations are willing to find ways to monitor and detect threats and respond whenever necessary. In the end, hackers are developing more sophisticated attacks than ever before. The good news though, is that companies today recognize the threats they face and are increasingly discovering new ways to better protect themselves.