Home News Security Trends: Hackers Will Up Their Game in 2021

Security Trends: Hackers Will Up Their Game in 2021

Thirty years ago, hackers were contented with attacking browsers or applications and disrupting enterprise networks. They pursued intellectual property and customer data – and sold that to competitors. But today, they are after something much bigger than that.

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EDITORIAL: We welcome all our readers back to work, on the first working day of the year! And we hope that 2021 will be a much better year for you. Here are some of the Cybersecurity trends you can expect in 2021.

Health and health care are going to be important considerations for the world in 2021. With the availability of vaccines, the world will limp back to normalcy this year. With that, the rate of unemployment should drop, and the crime graph will also dip. And hopefully, cybercriminals will mend their ways.

Yet, the bad guys are now thinking of ways to leverage the current situation. The tone and content of phishing emails will now be about the availability of vaccines. Bad actors will choose to exploit the naivety of gullible folks, this time turning their attention to vaccine distribution and health insurance fraud.  And since we shop online more often, they will target e-commerce sites and logistics companies too.

So, please be prudent and mindful about emails or texts from people impersonating health authorities or from fake insurance or logistics companies. Make a few calls to verify.

Bigger Agendas

It is also worrisome to see cybercriminals moving to sophisticated agendas, as their involvement in cyber warfare and attacks on critical infrastructure, with malicious intentions of disrupting life and destabilizing economies. Attacking nuclear facilities (Iran) or turning off the national grid used to be the stuff of James Bond and Mission Impossible movies. It’s very much a reality today. And it makes those that peddle credit card numbers on the dark web look like rookies.

Thirty years ago, hackers were contented with attacking browsers or applications and disrupting enterprise networks. They pursued intellectual property and customer data – and sold that to competitors. They still do. But today, they are after something much bigger than that.

The bad guys are also going to up their game and look at new modes of attack – like deepfakes – and the use of artificial intelligence. This year you can expect more deepfake news videos that sound and look so much like the real thing. And if you get a call from your CEO or CFO, which sounds so much like them, would you fall for it? It could be a case of deepfake – yes, the bad guys can do voices too, like the late Hollywood actor Robin Williams (watch the 1993 American comedy-film, Mrs. Doubtfire). That’s taking spear-phishing and whaling to a whole new level!

Cybersecurity Trends in 2021

We’ll see more ransomware attacks this year, and industries centered on critical infrastructure will be targeted. The Ransomware Task Force is already putting a strategy and plan in place to counter ransomware. But governments need to step in and give such initiatives more momentum. Organizations are already thinking about ways to counter Ransomware, and CISO MAG will report on this in its February 2021 issue.

Likewise, expect to see new standards to counter BEC attacks, particularly at the email gateway level. CISO MAG will report on these new developments during the course of the year.

 

Our January issue, which is fresh out of the oven, has viewpoints from industry experts about the nature of cybersecurity threats this year. Don’t miss our Cover Story: 5 Cybersecurity Approaches That All Businesses Should Consider in 2021. It offers wisdom and advice for CISOs.

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We pledge to offer you more useful cybersecurity news and information this year, with more analysis. In fact, we just kicked off our Explainer series over the weekend, and you can read our first two explainer articles elsewhere on this website. Last year, we launched our Podcast channel and webinar series. So more podcasts and video content will be coming your way this year.

Stay safe, cautious, and healthy in 2021.


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View our 2021 Editorial Calendar here.