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Top 8 Cyber Security Trends in 2021

We’re now living in a digital revolution, where businesses, both large and small, corporations, governments, and organizations are now using computer systems in order to manage their daily activities, this, in turn, makes cybersecurity more of a concern, in order to protect this data from the numerous hackers and cybercriminals or just any random unauthorized data access.

With the constant changing and evolving of technology, we also witness a subtle shift in cybersecurity trends, whether it’s in the area of ransomware, data breaches, or common hacks. Below are 8 of the biggest cybersecurity trends of 2021.

  1. Automotive Hacking

The first trend we can expect for this year when it comes to cybersecurity is the rise of automotive hacking. Vehicles today, come with a wide range of automated programs, which are used for the various functions on the car, whether it be the door locking mechanism, airbags, cruise control, or the program for driving assistance.

The average vehicle also uses Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technology for communication, which opens these cars up to a wide range of vulnerabilities, most especially at the hands of hackers.

The use of microphones for eavesdropping, or hacking into vehicles, is something that is only set to rise this year, as more and more automated vehicles make it off the production line. Autonomous or self-driving vehicles have their own complex mechanism that has their own cybersecurity protocols that are very rigid.

  1. Cloud Security Issues

As we witness, with each day, more infrastructure, business processes, and data being shifted over to the cloud, so do we see the protection of this data presents new challenges, as new approaches must be adopted to safeguard all this data.

Over the next couple of years, it would be safe to assume that cloud-based threats will only get worse, this, in turn, will lead to their own set of problems, especially for companies that try to stay above the curve.

Data packets that haven’t been configured or secured correctly will only increase the chances of data breaches for organizations, both large and small, and unauthorized access to these cloud services is not beyond the capabilities of the average cybercriminal.

Many organizations have come to the realization, that it is no longer feasible to manage their security manually, as web application infrastructure grows to enormous heights. This has imposed upon these companies to adopt a brand new approach to security for their web applications.

  1. Mobile Attack Vectors

The number of people with mobile devices has continued to rise, with an already increasing trend in businesses that store data on these devices. Unfortunately, many companies believe that their mobile devices are more secure than they actually are. The end result is many companies underestimating the potential risk of a data breach, via a mobile attack vector.

  1. Targeted Ransomware

Another trend for cybersecurity that can be seen as fairly significant is targeted ransomware. Many of these cyber criminals targeting more developed countries, where industries rely heavily upon certain programs to complete and carry out specified tasks.

These types of ransomware are tightly focused, such as the infamous WannaCry attack, on the health sector in England and Scotland. This attack adversely affected over 70,000 medical devices. Though, in the vast majority of cases, ransomware does what it says. It blocks an end-user from accessing his/her data unless a specific amount of money is paid.

However, it’s not uncommon for these types of attacks to be targeted at much larger organizations and in some other cases, entire nations.

  1. IoT Device Risks

With companies in a sort of race, to come out with the best new product, using new technologies, this naturally puts security on the backburner. So it’s not a major surprise that with the boom in IoT devices, we’ve witnessed a great many security blunders.

Insecure wireless connections, hard-cored credentials, unverified firmware updates, unencrypted sensitive data, vulnerable web interfaces, and much more.

IoT devices that have been compromised, such as NAS servers and routers are able to provide access to data and devices, oftentimes become new points of entry for attacks by these criminals, or they may provide the perfect DDoS attack target, while wearables and automated home products are used to steal personal identification data, and other such devices, by these individuals.

  1. Insider Threats

One of the biggest reasons for data breaches is surprisingly human error. Any employee on an off day or an intentional loophole is capable of bringing down an entire organization, with millions of dollars worth of stolen information.

Recent reports, carried out by Verizon, showed that the employee was either directly or indirectly the cause of such an attack 34% of the time. To lower this number, what you’ll want to do is create awareness. This means, teaching employees a basic understand of the most common security concerns.

  1. Phishing Threat

Phishing attacks, without a doubt, is still one of the more effective ways to steal sensitive data and personal identities, distribute malicious files, crypto-jacking (which is cryptocurrency mining), make fraudulent payments, and much more, and this threat is only set to increase, in the coming years.

The same can also be said for ransomware attacks, which is just as profitable today as it was when it was first introduced, and for that reason, will continue to be a headache for many years to come.

In order to protect an organization from cybercriminals, training is not the only thing that employees must receive, as they should also be given an understanding of vulnerabilities and security management to prohibit hackers from securing confidential data, which they will then use in their phishing attempts.

  1. Prevention vs. Detection and Response

To defend against malicious attacks, there are two measures one can take. However, research has shown that preventative measures are without a doubt, the most effective approach.

In order to detect and thus respond to these attacks that breach the loopholes, network detection, and automated response solutions will need to be adopted. Something that we can envision will become increasingly more popular over the next couple of years.

Uchenna Ani-Okoye
Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website https://www.compuchenna.co.uk.

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