Fresh threats in the cyber wars3 min read

31/Jul/2019

As cyber crime continues to prevail, organisations now have to pay extra attention to additional cyber security trends. Threats to cloud security, the vulnerability of the Internet of Things (IoT) and ever more cunning phishing methods represent new challenges to cyber security professionals and the organisations they serve.

According to a new article in “Open Access Government”, several cyber security trends are a must-know for any organisation this year.

Increased attacks on clouds

Despite almost daily news of significant cyber breaches, as “Open Access Government” points out: “organisations using the cloud still pay insufficient attention to the safety of their data”.
“As a cloud provider, we are aware of the rising number in DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attacks globally, as well as other attempts to breach the security of the cloud,” says Vincentas Grinius, CEO of Heficed, a cloud, dedicated server and IP address provider. “Per usual, the more access points are available within a platform or data stored on the cloud, the higher the risk. If using third-party solutions, enterprises need to pay extra attention to securing their data. When it comes to cloud providers, their customers need to make sure that their provider is putting the effort in properly segmenting their servers, so that an attack on one customer wouldn’t compromise the whole platform.”

Vulnerability of IoT networks

In the next two years, the market value of the Internet of Things (IoT), is expected to double in size to reach $520 billion (£426 billion). Such enormous growth is already leading to a rise in cyber security incidents, due to an increasing number of poorly secured IoT devices. But it is not only the devices themselves that could fall victim to malicious activities: the networks that such devices are connected to are also increasingly at risk.

“From a network infrastructure point of view, every connected device might be a potential threat,” added Grinius. “Phones, smartwatches, even smart home appliances, among other devices, might be used as access points and compromise whole networks. If users do not update their devices regularly and take other precautions, they could be responsible – without knowing – for enabling potentially damaging network-wide cyber security threats.”

Dangers of phishing

In 2019, widely discussed phishing attacks remain one of the most widespread threats to data safety. Verizon’s report on data breach estimates that 32% of all data breaches in 2018 were connected to phishing of some kind. What is particularly challenging about phishing is that it is not only about cyber security solutions from the system’s side – the success of phishing activities is due – in large part – to human error.

As Grinius explained: “To successfully tackle phishing, companies will have to invest in tools that monitor employees’ email traffic more closely, in making sure the systems used are always updated, and in cyber security training plans that would make employees aware of the threats and how to behave when confronted by them. A training plan like this could include a phishing simulator and constantly updating the employees on new phishing methods.”

Take a look at the latest issue of “Open Access Government” to find out more.

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