It has been an eventful past 12 months in the world of cyber security. 2018 saw the boom and bust of crypto currency mining and markets, huge data loss issues (even the loss of government held user data), as well as ongoing malware attacks.
What is less clear is what the future holds. However, here at Infosec-Careers.com we’re going to stick our necks out and make the following 6 predictions:
1. The growing importance of AI
AI is increasing in all areas of our lives and with it will come new opportunities for hackers. Tasks previously done by humans will become automated, opening the door to cyber security threats. What is interesting is that not only are AI systems being targeted, but AI systems are also being used by hackers as tools in the process.
And guess what – AI will also be used to defend against such threats. In other words, we’ll have the bizarre situation where AI systems are being defended by other AI systems against (yes, you guessed it) AI systems.
2. The expanse of 5G networks
2018 already saw the growth of 5G, but 2019 will see this move to the next level. In case you’re wondering what this has to do with cyber security, well, the answer is a lot. The increased speed and volume of data which 5G networks can handle will result in a corresponding increase in companies and programs which utilize it. With more processes being conducted online, the hacking opportunities (and subsequent need for cyber security) will increase.
3. Continued increase of data protection measures
Anyone who has worked with clients in the EU will know how significantly government regulation can affect data protection. GDPR was unrolled in 2018 which ramped up the responsibility of companies to protect customer data, plus to inform those customers about what they intend to do with the data and how they will keep it safe. With the huge data hack scandals of 2018 (e.g. when Facebook lost the data of 2.2 BILLION users), it’s likely that this demand for security is being fueled not just by governments, but by a general public who is angry at such corporations. As such, this is a trend which is likely to continue well into 2019 and beyond.
4. Increase in government sponsored activity
In addition to governments attempting to protect their own citizens, we are likely to see an increase in governments also using cyber attacks as a means of offense. In a world where everything is digitalized, it can be far quicker, cheaper, and easier to weaken your enemies will well-targeted hacks instead of expensive and unpopular traditional means of warfare. What is more, such attacks can often be carried out with almost complete anonymity (if done well!) These may come in the form of straight out attacks with the intent of disabling or weakening systems, espionage, or may even election meddling, as reportedly seen with Russia’s involvement in the US and UK elections.
5. Increasing role of multi-factor authentication
With online fraud increasing, it seems logical to assume that companies will take measures to tackle this. And one of those methods is to require multi-factor authentication. Most of us have seen it already with online banking, however this may be extended further to many other companies (and organizations) not currently making use of it.
6. Increasing importance of certifications
With a booming cyber security industry, the number of employees in the field has correspondingly increased. With more competition for positions, how can employers filter out the ‘good’ employees from the ‘bad’? One way is by comparing education and qualifications on applicants’ resumes. As such, the importance of cyber security certifications is predicted to increase. For those interested in developing their careers by obtaining such qualifications, it may be worth reading our other blog post about “The Top 10 Cyber Security Certifications in 2021.”