If it seems like the dangers of cyberattacks continue to go up every year, it’s not your imagination. Attacks on businesses jumped by 50% in 2020.
Cybercriminals are using the sophistication of AI and machine learning to make cyberattacks more efficient, thus they’re able to launch more of them. Additionally, large criminal groups have begun democratizing ransomware attacks by offering Ransomware as a Service (RaaS). This allows anyone to subscribe to get an “attack kit” and even access to hacker customer support.
If you want to avoid becoming another data breach statistic, you need to keep an eye on the threats coming so you can prepare your cybersecurity defenses accordingly.
We’ve reviewed predictions from the experts, such as Security Magazine, and others to bring you the threats that these specialists are seeing in their crystal balls for 2022.
Here are the things you need to be aware of to inform your IT security upgrades this year.
More Attacks by Nation-States
Cyber Warfare has gained notoriety in the 21st century. In these attacks conducted by nation-states, it’s not just other governments that are targeted. Often, state-sponsored hacking groups, such as Lazarus Group (responsible for the famous WannaCry ransomware attack), will conduct widespread attacks that hit businesses of all sizes.
Stealing government secrets may be one reason for nation-state attacks, but another common one is to make money. Ransomware is often an attack of choice for these groups who are bringing in money for regimes like North Korea.
Security experts predict that attacks by nation-states will grow in 2022. And this is just as some insurance companies are eliminating coverage in their cybersecurity liability policies for this very type of attack.
Ransomware Will Continue to Be a Major Issue
Ransomware attacks are quite lucrative, and they’ve been growing in prevalence each year. In 2020, ransomware attack volume skyrocketed by 485%. And if you thought it couldn’t go any higher, then you may be surprised to know that it’s projected to get worse.
With over half of victims paying the ransom and the increasing profitability of ransomware, hackers show no signs of slowing down on one of their favorite money-making tools.
Supply Chain Attacks Will Grow
Last year, there were two prevalent attacks that impacted the supply chain, and thus had widespread impacts far beyond the organizations that were attacked.
The ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline caused gas prices across the U.S. to increase and shut down a major pipeline supply of petroleum products to the east coast for nearly a week.
This incident was followed closely by the attack on the largest supplier of beef and pork in the world, JBS. The attack closed plants in the U.S., Canada, and Australia and impacted meat prices.
With widespread disruption, one of the goals of state-sponsored hacking groups, you can expect more attacks to be targeted at supply chain organizations, which have a one-to-many impact.
Zero-Trust Cybersecurity Will Become the Standard
Just a year or two ago, “zero-trust” security was a brand-new term and one that was still unfamiliar to many organizations. This type of security approach is built on a principle of checks and balances, and an assumption that just because a program or user is inside a network doesn’t mean they’re authorized to be there.
Some of the tactics used in a zero-trust security approach include:
- Multi-factor authentication
- Application safelisting
- Application ringfencing
- Ongoing network monitoring
- Endpoint device management
Due to the increased sophistication of cyberattacks and the threats they pose, zero-trust is predicted to become the new security standard that is required to keep networks properly protected.
Expect More Data Privacy Protection Regulation
Many states and industries have enacted data privacy laws in recent years to protect consumer data being misused, as well as to put requirements in place for how businesses handle data they collect.
With data breaches not showing any sign of slowdown and even more use of cloud technology, you can expect more regulations coming from various states, municipalities, and industries for data protection.
SMS Phishing Will Begin to Replace Email Phishing
Think about how many different text messages you get these days that you didn’t a year ago. Walk into a chain retailer, and they’ll offer you a coupon on the spot if you sign up for text notifications. We get SMS alerts for shipping deliveries, upcoming dental appointments, and a variety of other things.
Text messaging has become the new form of email for many retailers.
This is bad when it comes to “smishing,” which is phishing messages sent via text message. It’s easier than ever for hackers to gain access to your mobile number and slide in a fake text message with the legitimate ones that looks like it’s a shipment tracking notification.
With the shortened URLs used in SMS, it’s very difficult to know if you’ve clicked to a malicious site until it’s too late.
You’ll need to be extra careful about fake text messages going forward because they’ll begin to replace email phishing.
Schedule a Cybersecurity Audit Today!
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Contact us today to learn more! Call 920-256-1214 or reach us online.