The Essential Tools You Need
Recent research shows that an estimated 350,000 new malicious programs are created and released every single day. Add those to the already existing threats along with the spate of AI-assisted and machine learning cybercrime and you have a recipe for a cybersecurity disaster.
Today’s digital landscape is completely different from what it was ten years ago, and nowadays we can’t rely on just antiviruses to keep us safe. While antiviruses are still a useful tool, the trojans and worms of old are increasingly sophisticated and it’s best to add tools that protect your data and devices from modern threats.
With that in mind, here we take a look at some of 2020’s biggest cybersecurity concerns and some of the measures you can take to protect your digital self and your data.
On The Horizon In 2020: Key Cyber Threats
Ransomware Attacks On Both The Public And Private Sector
According to a recent white paper released by Sophos, a leading IT security company, ransomware attacks are targeting the private sector with quite a high rate of success. Companies affected range from large to small, in fact, the paper’s authors note that size doesn’t seem to matter.
Outside of private business concerns, public entities are also facing increased risk, as too are individuals. The report states that data in the public cloud makes up 59 percent of all successful attacks and remains a “mainstream target.”
New Challenges Related To 5G
Technology and cybersecurity experts are increasingly worried that the rollout of 5G connectivity will result in more cybersecurity challenges for both businesses and governments across the world.
In 2019, Information Risk Management released a study called Risky Business. In it, survey respondents were concerned that 5G technology could mean a greater risk of cyberattacks on Internet of Things (IoT) devices and networks. Respondents also noted a lack of hardware and firmware security among their concerns.
As if identity fraud weren’t bad enough, we now face the added threat of synthetic identities. In a nutshell, synthetic identities are a type of identity fraud whereby scammers utilize a combination of both real and fake credentials to create an illusion of a real individual.
For example, a cybercriminal could make a synthetic identity with a legitimate address. But the birthdate linked to that address isn’t legitimate.
For every benefit AI provides, there is a related cybersecurity drawback, many of which security researchers are still fully coming to terms with. One threat thought to dominate in 2020 is AI-assisted cyberattacks.
Cybercriminals can use AI to produce programs that mimic real human behavior. These programs are then used to steal peoples’ personal or financial information.
Mitigating The Risks
These are just a few of the newest threats on the cybersecurity landscape in 2020. Beyond the risks detailed above, users also need to be protected from known threats such as socially engineered phishing attacks, malware, and many others.
Businesses are also at risk of attack, particularly smaller ones where cybersecurity is known to be lacking. For companies, the fallout from a breach can be disastrous, both in terms of the financial burden and the hit their reputations invariably take.
Mitigating the risk, whether you’re an individual user or a company, involves making investments in cybersecurity and getting the right tools for the job. Here are a few essentials you should have in your cybersecurity toolbox:
Antimalware is kind of like antivirus for the modern digital world, but that doesn’t mean you should use it without an antivirus. Instead, try running both at all times. Antimalware is more attuned to newer threats but it can also detect viruses.
. VPN Eencryption:
Getting a VPN app on your devices is one of the best ways to protect your data, both in terms of privacy and cybersecurity. Virtual Private Networks encrypt data in transmission, making it almost impossible for threat actors to intercept it or interfere with it.
. Email Scanner:
As we said above, the threat of social-engineering attacks is still high, an email scanner mitigates the risk by scouring through your incoming emails and looking for suspicious links or fake senders.
An oldie but still key in today’s digital realm, firewalls protect you by filtering traffic and blocking unauthorized access.
In addition to these essentials, make sure you follow digital best practices in regards to your passwords and your accounts. Cybersecurity in 2020 is going to be tough, but with the right tools in your arsenal, you are off to a much better start.