The technology landscape is ever-changing, and within the last year there is no doubt the reliance on technology has brought about many innovations, as well as hurdles. No one could have predicted the impact the pandemic had on technology, and how once again, the landscape shifted. In this blog, we are going to review the emerging threat landscape that has resulted over the last year, and what cybersecurity trends are to be on the look-out for in 2021 and beyond.
Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in Second Half of 2021
The sudden switch to remote work resulted in major implications for the cybersecurity landscape. Organizations were rushing to implement unplanned cloud migrations to accommodate their remote environment, while any typical security measures were side-swept or ignored completely. This led to new levels of vulnerability and risk across various industries.
It looks as though remote work is here to stay for many people, which means organizations will need to assess their current security infrastructures for areas of vulnerability that were potentially overlooked in the scrambled shift to remote work. Implementing a long-term remote security strategy could prevent any future threats from occurring as well and give organizations peace of mind for whatever their work ecosystem will look like in the coming months.
New Challenges from Ransomware
Ransomware has become one of the most common threats to organization’s data security. Over the last year, organizations have been plagued by ransomware attacks, and the cost associated with them. Unfortunately, as technology continues to advance, so do these cyber criminals. The sophistication of these attacks locks organizations into ransom payments, as well as the loss of sensitive data.
Because of this rise in ransomware attacks, skilled cybersecurity professionals are in higher demand than ever to implement strategies to prevent these attacks and safeguard their data.
Increased Use of Multi-Factor Authentication
Most people know passwords are the standard when it comes to cybersecurity best practices, and multi-factor authentication (MFA) has become more popular as well. MFA works as an added defense against data breaches and malicious attacks by using two or more separate factors for authorization, such as a one-time passcode that is sent to a separate device for verification of identity.
While MFA has been useful in protecting personal information and data, it’s likely we’ll see a shift in traditional MFA due to associated risks. As mentioned above, MFA uses a separate device to receive a one-time passcode, commonly a SMS-text message. However, SMS texts aren’t encrypted, which means attackers can gain access to these plain text codes. This means that while MFA is still going to be widely used, organizations should be aware of the risks associated with phone-based MFA, and opt to choose a more secure method of MFA such as Microsoft Authenticator.
Increased Cloud Attacks
As we mentioned earlier, many organizations rushed to implement cloud-based services to accommodate the shift to remote work styles. While cloud services offer many benefits for organizations, there are still security implications that need to be addressed to avoid attacks. Organizations must search any vulnerabilities that exist in their current infrastructure to avoid a data breach.
It’s likely we’ll see a continuation of organizations adopting cloud-hosted services in 2021, but with that, they’ll need to do their part to close up any security gaps before migration to avoid possible data breaches.
Many of these cybersecurity trends were accelerated in the last year due to the pandemic, and organizations need to prioritize their security to avoid vulnerability and risks. From what we’ve seen so far this year, these trends aren’t going away, and security needs to be at the forefront for organizational efficiency and safety.
Managed Cybersecurity Solutions with Lighthouse Technology Partners
Cyber-attacks nearly doubled this past year. But 93% of breaches could have been avoided by installing and adhering to cyber hygiene best practices. Contrary to popular belief, small businesses are not immune to cyber-attacks either.
Here at Lighthouse, we can identify your IT security risks, vulnerabilities, and exposures to all manner of cyber threats and attacks. We have the right tools, protocols and professionals to harden – and recover, if necessary – your IT systems.