The digital world has become an increasingly dangerous place, especially for companies who neglect to opt for advanced cybersecurity defenses. As data rises in value, so too do the spoils for criminals. Even small businesses are now prime targets for malicious activities online.
With the rise of artificial intelligence over the coming decade, we’re also likely to see a host of new threats facing businesses. While companies will deploy AI-based security systems to defend their networks, sophisticated cybercriminals will also begin to use the technology to identify and exploit weaknesses in company defenses.
Building up business IT systems to the latest defensive capability will, therefore, become even more of a top strategic priority for the present decade and is incontestably the area most companies should be focusing their investments on.
The Cybersecurity Skills Gap
One of the critical tasks for the decade ahead will be for companies to reduce cyber vulnerabilities. They won’t be able to do this, though, unless they engage in aggressive talent acquisition.
Estimates suggest that the current number of unfilled cybersecurity posts is now around 3.5 million. The economy is hungry for people who can provide value in these roles, but there aren’t enough workers currently in the pipeline to fill them.
The threat from cybersecurity right now is considerable. While governments and public institutions face threats like never before, so too do individual businesses. What’s more, the sheer range of threats is becoming difficult for many small firms to manage. Criminals are doing everything from creating advanced phishing attacks to holding businesses’ data ransom.
This new landscape means that businesses face two new problems in the cybersecurity space: increasingly difficult talent acquisition and a broader array of threats to counter.
Companies, therefore, will need to invest more in training existing staff if they are going to meet the cybersecurity challenges on the horizon. Estimates suggest that data breaches cost US companies an average of $8.19 million apiece, underscoring the importance of spending a little money today to avoid much more significant losses in the future.
Furthermore, the difficulty of providing adequate cybersecurity will also rise. According to experts, it is becoming more and more challenging to identify, track, prevent, or mitigate major cyberattacks or breaches. The vast majority of companies, therefore, will no longer be able to go it alone. They’ll need professional managed IT services if they want to defend against risks over the coming decade.
The Rise Of Vehicle Hacking
Though it may be some time before this happens, IT security issues could extend to far beyond stationary servers.
As vehicles become ever-more integrated with machine learning, the cloud and IoT, cybersecurity will become a safety priority. While it seems a little far-fetched today, hijacked fleet vehicles could cause untold destruction in the future if hackers work out how to override safety mechanisms.
Companies may also face a host of less extreme risks from vehicles. Criminals, for instance, could use these new IoT-enabled devices as a backdoor to gain entry to company systems. Given the array of in-car communication technology, sensors, and GPS equipment that the vehicles of the future will use, it seems almost inevitable that they will become a major target.
The Risk Of Untested Edge Computing
Finally, 2020 will likely usher in the emergence of edge computing attacks that take advantage of the weaknesses in this relatively new form of IT infrastructure.
Because edge computing is heavily involved in data processing—such as names, addresses, and bank account numbers—the number of attacks will likely rise. Unfortunately, while edge computing offers companies a host of benefits, they will face high risks, too, unless they adequately invest in their cybersecurity defenses. The companies that will thrive will be those who use third-party services as a way to circumvent the increasing risk of cybercrime due to new computing technologies arising.
No matter the size or scope of your business, you should make investing in cybersecurity a main priority for 2020. As modern businesses come to rely more and more on technology for communications and other operations, it will become imperative that all companies have strong cybersecurity defenses to prevent costly data breaches and potentially even greater disasters.