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2020 IT Strategy

What’s on the Horizon for Cybersecurity

Third Party Vendors “Top of Mind” for 2020

Organizations have been consistently turning to third-party providers for fulfilling a range of their digital needs. Additionally, all organizations have embarked on a journey to achieve maximum agility and in doing so, have exposed themselves to a number of risk factors.  Considering the debilitating security breaches of 2019, 2020 seems to be a rather challenging year for the cybersecurity leaders across the globe. 

Security Risk Trends that CIOs and CISOs will Face

  • The Growing Cybersecurity Skills Gap

Just like 2019, 2020 will also witness a cybersecurity skills gap that keeps on increasing. This dearth of cybersecurity professionals means an additional burden on the current IT security teams that are already facing more serious threats than ever. The workforce gap has generated a wider adoption of third-party security solutions and automation tools.

Additionally, incorporating cybersecurity into the software development life cycle is also becoming commonplace with approaches like DevSecOps. While these tools and approaches are great for aiding even small IT security teams in managing and implementing their security strategies effectively, organizations will be investing in training their current security experts to effectively adapt to these new tools. 

  • Cloud Misconfigurations: A Rising Threat

The growing number of attacks exploiting misconfigured data buckets shouldn’t come as a surprise as business processes and infrastructures keep shifting to the cloud. Protecting personal and critical data and infrastructure on the cloud calls for a revised cloud security strategy for meeting modern IT security needs. The Capital One breach was probably the largest data breach in the US financial sector in 2019, and it all boiled down to a misconfigured AWS S3 bucket that exposed more than 106 million records. It is expected that 2020 will be a critical year for strategizing against security incidents exploiting misconfigurations. Organizations will have to invest in automation and continuous monitoring to protect their large web app infrastructures. They will also have to train their IT security teams accordingly to seamlessly adapt to the demands of cloud environments. 

  • Smartphone Devices as an Attack Vector

Each year, the number of people using smart devices continues to rise and so does the trend of BYOD. The higher the number of personal devices that employees use for work, the greater the attack surface for cyber criminals. Each device that is used to access or store a company’s critical data is yet another gateway for malicious actors to infiltrate the organization’s network unless a foolproof security mechanism is in place. In 2020, more companies will be providing access to enterprise resources through a secure web application infrastructure.

  • Increasing State-Sponsored Cyberattacks

The global security landscape has changed drastically over the past few years. State actors are getting involved in massive cyberattacks including DDoS attacks and sensitive data breaches for reasons ranging from transforming public opinion in their favor to crippling the state machinery of rival countries. 2020 will be the year of escalating cyber warfare. This will inevitably lead to more advanced cyber attacks and even more sophisticated cybercriminals in the upcoming year. To face such high-profile criminal attacks, government institutions and big enterprises will be turning towards advanced IT security solutions and real-time vulnerability management strategies.

  • Privacy Regulations Shaping the Security Landscape

GDPR has given the citizens of the European Union a greater control over their private data usage. Non-compliance can cost as much as 20 million euros. Earlier this year, a French data protection watchdog slammed Google with a $57 million fine for lack of transparency regarding users’ data usage. In 2020, similar regulations are expected to be imposed in several other parts of the globe giving users the right to know how their data is being collected, stored and utilized. Huge businesses, and SMEs alike, will have to allocate budget for ensuring security and compliance if they wish to avoid huge monetary fines and loss of reputation. 

Moving Forward

Expert predictions indicate that the coming year will be the year of automation and AI for security. But technology is, in fact, a dual-edged sword. On one hand, AI can be utilized to predict attacks while on the other, attackers are already leveraging the technology to turn AI security systems to their benefit. Similarly, automation has also enabled modern cybercriminals to carry out phishing attacks at a massive scale.

As 2020 rolls in, security teams will need to upgrade their defenses to make use of these advanced technologies and the latest security tools smartly so that no loopholes remain for the attackers to manipulate security strategies in their own favor.