​Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in 2017

The jury has not yet been assembled to assess the fallout from the 2016 US Presidential email hacking scandal but the implications have certainly sent shock waves rippling throughout the world. Certainly the notion that anything is possible rings true.

From the infamous ‘Sony Hack’ that materialized in 2014 which proved that even the largest of corporations were susceptible to online hacking, it would appear that not even a US Presidential nominee’s private email account is safe.

Small, medium and large companies now more than ever need to be savvy and fluent in cyber security risks, as well as prevention methods to ensure the safety of their own data.

Investing in the security of both business and personal data has become the driver of success in the current economic climate.

2017 will see the growth of cyber security industries.

“Once a new technology rolls over you, if you’re not part of the steamroller, you’re part of the road” - Stewart Brand

DDOS Attacks on the Rise

IOT, otherwise known as ‘Internet of Things’ is ‘the concept of basically connecting any device with an on and off switch to the Internet (and/or to each other). This includes everything from cell phones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, lamps, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of.

2017 brings a predicted increase in the number of DDoS attacks:

‘DDoS is a type of DOS attack where multiple compromised systems, which are often infected with a Trojan, are used to target a single system causing a Denial of Service (DoS) attack. Victims of a DDoS attack consist of both the end targeted system and all systems maliciously used and controlled by the hacker in the distributed attack.’

Nader Henein, Regional Director of BlackBerry’s Advanced Security Assurance Advisory, the company’s cybersecurity consultancy division has recently spoken about the problems associated with IOT:

“People’s televisions are now connected to the internet, but they aren’t secured in the same way a computer is. They will be easy points of access for attackers.”

Deloitte forecasts there will be a spike in DDoS attacks throughout 2017. In an article by Computer Weekly Phill Everson, head of cyber risk services at Deloitte explained how DDoS could effect those businesses with an online presence:

‘“DDoS attacks are the equivalent of hundreds of thousands of fake customers converging on a traditional shop at the same time. The shop struggles to identify genuine customers and quickly becomes overwhelmed. The consequence could see an online commerce site temporarily unable to transact, or a government site not able to process tax returns”

With the popularity of IOT capabilities, and their insecure characteristics, DDoS attacks will most likely happen through IOT interfaces until firewalls are built to protect devices accordingly.

Organisational Cloud Migration

Historically ‘The Cloud’ has built up the reputation of being a dangerous way of storing data, applications and important information due to various hacking attempts on small and large businesses.

Cloud migration can often be a costly exercise as the accumulation of information built by a business can be rather large, depending on the company’s size and services. Invoice factoring can be a helpful tool in raising capital for cloud migration as it enables your business to serve your customer in more ways than one. Small business invoice factoring is on the rise in Australia as its appeal lies in the ability to have an immediate cash injection into the business. Instead of having to chase customers for invoice payment to keep a business afloat, invoice factoring allows cash flow to be outsourced to ensure better relationships with clients and a business’s customer base.

In 2017 however, we will see a rise in cloud migration with promises for better security through the implementation of security strategies. The challenges that lie within cloud migration stem from the shortage of skilled employees who have been trained in the operation of the cloud.

The Evolution of Blockchain

If you are familiar with Bitcoin the concept of Blockchain may be of interest. In the past it has been difficult for users of Bitcoin to track expenditure of the currency in the online space, raising concerns regarding its security.

Don and Alex Tapscott, authors of Blockchain revolution 2016 explain Blockchain as:

‘an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.’

Blockchain gives businesses the ability to track bitcoin transactions and keep those who attempt security breaches to be held accountable. It has revolutionized the Bitcoin ecosystem and is the leader in cybersecurity breakthroughs for 2017.

As technology evolves so must business, and with the emergence of exciting specialized technologies for business and enterprise it has become imperative that those running a company are knowledgeable and aware of the location of their data. In the 21st century it is evident that data is king, and without its safety, enterprise and business will struggle to succeed in the global economy.

About The Author

Tim Fisher works as a freelance journalist for Authorflair and writes about small business, finance and emerging technology. For more insights into the Australian entrepreneurial scene you can connect with Tim at Authorflair.