Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Network Security

// // //
12/23/2019
06:00 AM
Steve Durbin
Steve Durbin
Steve Durbin

Crystal Ball: The Top 3 Global Cybersecurity Threats for 2020

In the year ahead, organizations of all sizes must prepare for the unknown so they have the flexibility to withstand unexpected, high-impact cybersecurity events.

In the year ahead, organizations of all sizes must prepare for the unknown so they have the flexibility to withstand unexpected, high-impact cybersecurity events. To take advantage of emerging trends in both technology and cyberspace, businesses need to manage risks in ways beyond those traditionally handled by the information security function, since new attacks will impact both shareholder value and business reputation.

After reviewing the current threat landscape, there are three dominant security threats that businesses need to prepare for in 2020. These include, but are not limited to:

    • The race for technology dominance -- trade and government

 

    • Third parties, IoT and the cloud -- the emerging threat landscape

 

  • Cybercrime

Each of these areas is covered further below:

The race for technology dominance -- trade and government
Technology has changed the world in which we live. Old norms are changing, and the next industrial revolution will be entirely technology driven and technology dependent. In short, technology will enable innovative digital business models and society will be critically dependent on technology to function. Intellectual property will be targeted as the battle for dominance rages.

Evidence of fracturing geopolitical relationships started to emerge in 2018 demonstrated by the US and China trade war and the UK Brexit. In 2020, the US and China will increase restrictions and protectionist measures in pursuit of technology leadership leading to a heightened digital cold war in which data is the prize. This race to develop strategically important next generation technology will drive an intense nation-state backed increase in espionage. The ensuing knee jerk reaction of a global retreat into protectionism, increased trade tariffs and embargos will dramatically reduce the opportunity to collaborate on the development of new technologies. The UK's exclusion from the EU Galileo satellite system, as a result of the anticipated Brexit, is one example.

New regulations and international agreements will not be able to fully address the issues powered by advances in technology and their impact on society. Regulatory tit for tat battles will manifest across nation states and, rather than encourage innovation, is likely to stifle and constrain new developments, pushing up costs and increasing the complexity of trade for multinational businesses.

Third parties, IoT and the cloud -- the emerging threat landscape

A complex interconnection of digitally connected devices and superfast networks will prove to be a security concern as modern life becomes entirely dependent on technology. Highly sophisticated and extended supply chains present new risks to corporate data as it is necessarily shared with third party providers. IoT devices are often part of a wider implementation that is key to the overall functionality.

Few devices exist in isolation, and it is the Internet component of the IoT that reflects that dependency. For a home or commercial office to be truly "smart," multiple devices need to work in cooperation. For a factory to be "smart," multiple devices need to operate and function as an intelligent whole. However, this interconnectivity presents several security challenges, not least in the overlap of consumer and operational/industrial technology.

Finally, since so much of our critical data is now held in the cloud, opening an opportunity for cybercriminals and nation states to sabotage the cloud, aiming to disrupt economies and take down critical infrastructure through physical attacks and operating vulnerabilities across the supply chain.

Cybercrime -- criminals, nation states and the insider

Criminal organizations have a massive resource pool available to them and there is evidence that nation states are outsourcing as a means of establishing deniability. Nation states have fought for supremacy throughout history, and more recently, this has involved targeted espionage on nuclear, space, information and now smart technology. Industrial espionage is not new and commercial organizations developing strategically important technologies will be systematically targeted as national and commercial interests blur. Targeted organizations should expect to see sustained and well-funded attacks involving a range of techniques such as zero-day exploits, DDoS attacks and advanced persistent threats.\r\n\r\n

Additionally, the insider threat is one of the greatest drivers of security risks that organizations face as a malicious insider utilizes credentials to gain access to a given organization's critical assets. Many organizations are challenged to detect internal nefarious acts, often due to limited access controls and the ability to detect unusual activity once someone is already inside their network.

The threat from malicious insider activity is an increasing concern, especially for financial institutions, and will continue to be so in 2020.

Avoid getting left behind

Today, the stakes are higher than ever before, and we're not just talking about personal information and identity theft anymore. High level corporate secrets and critical infrastructure are constantly under attack and organizations need to be aware of the emerging threats that have shifted in the past year, as well as those that they should prepare for in the coming year.

By adopting a realistic, broad-based, collaborative approach to cybersecurity and resilience, government departments, regulators, senior business managers and information security professionals will be better able to understand the true nature of cyberthreats and respond quickly and appropriately. This will be of the highest importance in 2020 and beyond.

Steve Durbin is Managing Director of the Information Security Forum (ISF). His main areas of focus include strategy, information technology, cybersecurity, digitalization and the emerging security threat landscape across both the corporate and personal environments. Previously, he was senior vice president at Gartner.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Edge-DRsplash-10-edge-articles
I Smell a RAT! New Cybersecurity Threats for the Crypto Industry
David Trepp, Partner, IT Assurance with accounting and advisory firm BPM LLP,  7/9/2021
News
Attacks on Kaseya Servers Led to Ransomware in Less Than 2 Hours
Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  7/7/2021
Commentary
It's in the Game (but It Shouldn't Be)
Tal Memran, Cybersecurity Expert, CYE,  7/9/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Video
Cartoon
Current Issue
Creating an Effective Incident Response Plan
Security teams are realizing their organizations will experience a cyber incident at some point. An effective incident response plan that takes into account their specific requirements and has been tested is critical. This issue of Tech Insights also includes: -a look at the newly signed cyber-incident law, -how organizations can apply behavioral psychology to incident response, -and an overview of the Open Cybersecurity Schema Framework.
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2022-40204
PUBLISHED: 2022-12-01
A cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability exists in all current versions of Digital Alert Systems DASDEC software via the Host Header in undisclosed pages after login.
CVE-2022-46162
PUBLISHED: 2022-11-30
discourse-bbcode is the official BBCode plugin for Discourse. Prior to commit 91478f5, CSS injection can occur when rendering content generated with the discourse-bccode plugin. This vulnerability only affects sites which have the discourse-bbcode plugin installed and enabled. This issue is patched ...
CVE-2019-18265
PUBLISHED: 2022-11-30
Digital Alert Systems’ DASDEC software prior to version 4.1 contains a cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerability that allows remote attackers to inject arbitrary web script or HTML via the SSH username, username field of the login page, or via the HTTP host header. The injected con...
CVE-2022-46156
PUBLISHED: 2022-11-30
The Synthetic Monitoring Agent for Grafana's Synthetic Monitoring application provides probe functionality and executes network checks for monitoring remote targets. Users running the Synthetic Monitoring agent prior to version 0.12.0 in their local network are impacted. The authentication token use...
CVE-2022-23746
PUBLISHED: 2022-11-30
The IPsec VPN blade has a dedicated portal for downloading and connecting through SSL Network Extender (SNX). If the portal is configured for username/password authentication, it is vulnerable to a brute-force attack on usernames and passwords.