Cyber Security Trends for 2021: Out-Hacking the Hackers
A wave of new and evolving online security threats has the information security industry on high alert. As our dependence on technology continues to grow, privacy and security systems continue to weaken. Cybersecurity threats have no mercy when it comes to data and assets of corporations, individuals, and government.
You may be wondering, “What is a cyber threat?” This term gets thrown around in the media and is often used as an umbrella term for dozens of potential threats. Cyber-attacks include threats such as phishing, computer viruses, data breaches, cyroptojacking, and cyber-physical attacks.
The repercussions of cyber-attacks are endless: costs include damage and destruction of data, theft of intellectual property, stolen money, theft of personal and financial data, and lost productivity, to name a few.
“Honestly, we’re all at risk,” Heather Ricciuto of IBM Security told cnbc.com, “Whether you’re talking about a large enterprise or an individual.” The damages associated with information technology security threats are projected to total $6 trillion USD globally in 2021.
With COVID-19, the internet and cyberspace have become increasingly at risk as people continue to work from home and access sensitive information from remote locations. Many organizations still face issues with data security and privacy, which is why we’re here to tackle top IT security threats across industries.
A closer look at the biggest IT security threats for 2021:
Phishing Attacks: Phishing attacks are not a thing of the past. Phishing attacks are carefully targeted digital messages transmitted to fool people into clicking a link that will install malware or expose potentially sensitive information. In the age of artificial intelligence and machine learning, cyber hackers have the tools and resources to create fake emails with sophisticated detail and design that anyone could fall for. Through phishing attacks, hackers gain access to private databases, employee and company credentials, and financial information.
IoT Attacks: IoT stands for Internet of Things. This includes any device connected to the internet that can communicate with each other. This includes everything you are in constant contact with: laptop, tablet, smartphone, and smartwatch. What many fail to realize is there are hundreds of devices connected to the internet that are increasingly at risk, such as medical devices, manufacturing equipment, and home security systems. (Ring a bell?) According to Statista, by 2025 there will be more than 25 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices in use. More connected devices mean greater risk, making IoT networks vulnerable and susceptible to hackers.
Smart Medical Devices and Electronic Medical Records (EMRs): With the healthcare industry going through a major technological breakthrough as patient medical records have moved online, hospitals and medical facilities are still learning and adapting to the digitization of patient medical records. This leaves an opening for hackers to sweep in and steal sensitive patient/doctor/hospital information.
As healthcare professionals rely more heavily on smart medical devices to treat patients, hackers are getting creative with the people and devices they are targeting. Theoretically, a hacker could change the dosage on a medical device or change the readings. In the age of COVID-19, when doctors are performing virtual visits, patients and healthcare professionals need to have the necessary security and resources in place to protect all parties involved.Data Breaches: A data breach is a security incident in which information is accessed without authorization. Just because your organization hasn’t had any cybersecurity issues in the past does not mean you’re susceptible to a hacker’s ability to breach your data. Anyone can fall victim if they’re not careful with their IT security solutions, such as the 2013 Target data breach that cost the company $18.5 million dollars and affected 41 million consumers. No matter how large or small your organization.
IT Security Threats Affect Everyone
Investing in cybersecurity not only protects your organization and employees, but your customers, your business partners, and your reputation. There are two ways to know if your IT security solutions are keeping up: wait for a breach to happen or consult with the right professionals. A network assessment from Systems Integration (AKA a security audit or security review) ensures proper security controls are integrated into your technological environment. Systems Integrations has experience working with organizations in a variety of industries, and we’ve developed special capabilities to create customized solutions for each field. Learn how we can move your business forward with our free, no-risk network assessment today.