There have been so many breaches in the last year, we have learned new lessons that we should have known before. We should also keep in mind that history tends to repeat itself, which means your cyber security is constantly at risk. I will provide you with my top 7 cyber security predictions going forward.
Malware and Phishing Will Be Put On Auto-Pilot
There is a new cyber threat call ransomware that involves the encryption and theft of all of your files until you agree to pay a hefty fine. This ransomware can also come in the form of a fake antivirus that will completely take over your computer once downloaded.
Have you ever heard of Doxing? It involves having all of your personal and embarrassing information in the hands of a criminal. Your darkest secrets are used against you as blackmail. This can have devastating effects on victims.
Often, the criminals will return a few months later demanding more money, and of course you will pay it.
Your Digital Payments Will Turn Around To Bite You
You can find digital payment systems almost everywhere you go now. From Apple Pay to Banks and retailers… they have been integrated into every daily transaction.
This is a very convenient option for business owners to collect funds. But there’s a HUGE downside, which often happens when something is too easy.
I predict that mobile payment systems will become even more popular than they are today. This will leave the smaller mobile payment companies in a vulnerable position. With so many small mobile payment companies popping up, you’re guaranteed to find a lack of security acknowledgement, and an inevitable breach in the competitive market of mobile payments.
Your Easy-To-Use Home Devices Will Rise Against You
Smart home devices are everywhere. Just about every product manufacturer involved in residential products and services seems to be developing smart home devices. A smart device compromise could allow an attacker to gain access to the home network and remotely control and monitor devices. This could result in data breaches but could also include wasting of utilities such as water, electricity, or burning fuel.
Small Businesses Will Continue To Ignore Security Threats
You may have noticed that many of these predictions rest on the lack of attention to security. It seems that organizations continue to move forward with a “it has always worked, why fix it” mentality. Most do not learn from the mistakes of others.
I predict that we will continue to see businesses experience breaches that could have been prevented with common sense security solutions. Some of the biggest issues that are ignored include:
Failing to secure websites against injection attacks.
Leaving default configurations, settings, or account credentials.
Failing to update to current product versions and patches.
Failing to log all activity and events, including system events, software activities, and user activities.
Failing to encrypt stored user data and provide communication encryption.
Customer’s billing data should be separate from their login credentials, which should also be separate from their profile settings, preferences, and activity history.
For some people, this list might seem like common sense. But most are blind to the possibility of a massive security breach. We continue to see companies make the same mistakes over and over again, and it’s a complete shame because it can be easily prevented.
Ad Blockers Will Longer Be Considered A “Luxury”
The Internet is always evolving, as it tends to do. What we think it is for today is different than what it was used for ten years ago. In the future, two security tools will be essential as the Internet changes. The main purpose of the Internet has been transformed into a vehicle for advertising, and the content we seek is just used as a teaser to attract us to a site in order to show us ads.
Advertising itself is not really the core problem. The problem is that malicious malware will push code into a visitor’s web browser. This in turn will cause a significant increase in wasted bandwidth and will create late load times and site response.
In an attempt to protect themselves from such an attack, many business owners and everyday Internet users will need to install ad blockers and script blockers. These tools are used to prevent the mobile code related to advertising to be transferred from the server to the web browser in the first place.
I predict that due to the increase of blocking tools in web browsers, advertisers and site managers will revise their tactics. Instead of pushing more obnoxious ads, sites will move to advertisers that use more subtle approaches.
Cloud Security Will Need A New Plan Of Attack
Cloud computing is huge right now, and it will continue to grow due to its ease of use. Cloud computing is remote virtualization. Cloud computing offers many benefits that simply cannot be implemented in any other way.
However, cloud computing has its downfalls as well. Your data is being stored and processed on computers sitting in someone else’s building, it is at a higher level of risk than if it was stored inside your own building. The moment data leaves your premises, it is exposed to additional potential problems. This is true of the transfer, storage, and processing of your data in relation to a cloud service.
I expect that in the future a massive breach of a cloud service provider will occur. This compromise is likely to affect hundreds of its customers in a very public and visible manner.
Drones Are Pretty Cool… But They’re Criminal Friendly Too
Drones have become a popular hobby for enthusiasts, but they can also be used to commercial use. However, they can be used to violate privacy, damage property, and can be used as weapons.
In the future, we will likely see a consumer-grade drone being used to implement a serious security breach of a secure business. The drone could be used to gain access to a wireless network, or possibly to plant a listening device. The breach will be more serious than taking aerial video of a private or confidential area.
2017 is setting the stage for a long list of cyber disasters to occur. My hope is that by providing these 7 predictions for the future, business owners and Internet users will take the necessary precautions to protect themselves. If we each take responsibility for our own protection, we may be able to avoid some of the above problems in the future.
Keep your eyes open. Be ready for anything. Stay Protected.
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