As we near the end of 2018, companies are finalizing their strategies for next year. To do this, we must take into account what’s happened so far.

This past year has been marked by the growing sophistication of threats. We have seen the entry into force of GDPR , the appearance of more targeted attacks, the sudden success of cryptocurrencies and the notable rise of IoT devices. All of these events have forced hackers to reinvent themselves and devise new types of attacks. Thus, we also need to anticipate these changes.

These are our top 10 predictions for 2019:

1. Cyber-attacks will be increasingly sophisticated and intelligent

In recent years, we have seen the increased sophistication of attacks and the professionalization of hackers and these are trends that we expect will continue in 2019. Hackers are taking advantage of the fact that many companies are still using traditional security tools. These security tools are based on analysis and detection and are not adapted to today’s complex environment, which leaves them vulnerable to attacks.

2. Ransomware attacks are in decline, but still remain one of the top attack vectors

As with all types of cyber-attacks, Ransomware attacks have their own cycle. Once they reach their highest peak, they give way to new modalities such as crypto jacking. Even so, it would be a serious mistake to lower our guard on this threat as we will still feel their presence in 2019.

3. Data protection policies will continue to increase

The entry into force of the GDPR marked a before and after in data protection. While 2018 has been a year of transition, some of the latest data breaches will lead to the first major fines in 2019. With the arrival of these first sanctions, companies will begin to seriously consider their liability and what measures need to be adopted.

4. Nation attacks will continue to increase

Cyber-attacks orchestrated or sponsored by governments will continue to grow. Most organizations are simply not structured to defend against them, so we expect to see many nation attacks penetrating the perimeter defenses.

5. International Cyberwar Convention

As nation attacks will continue to soar, a new set of international rules for cyberwarfare should be  established to guarantee that certain red lines are never crossed, under no circumstance.

6. Multi-factor and biometric authentication will become the standard for all online transactions

In 2018 we have seen a significant drop in the use of simple passwords. Their low cost and easy implementation led them to be the most chosen option for many years. However, like traditional solutions, they are no longer able to face current threats. The adoption of multi-factor and biometric authentication solutions is, therefore, increasingly critical.

7. Spear phishing will become more specific

As companies recognize that their employees are the weakest link and educate them about the existence of phishing, they take precautions. This forces hackers to professionalize, even more, their attacks. The more information they gather about their potential victims, the more legitimate their emails will appear.

8. Demand for Cyber Security Professionals will be on the rise

As companies become aware of the risks to which they are exposed and the possible repercussions and consequences an attack may have, they take the security of their networks and systems more seriously and hire more security professionals such as CISOs.

9. Cloud insecurity

As companies migrate their data and systems to the cloud, attacks that leverage its vulnerabilities also increase. The cloud is still a relatively new concept and there are many users who do not know what measures or precautions should be taken.

10. IOT in 2019

As we have seen in previous posts, we live in an increasingly connected world. In fact, the IoT is becoming the backbone of our lives. The greater the connectivity, the greater are also the risks. Digitization is good until security goes wrong. This is because any rapid transformation, if it is not accompanied by a solid plan, will produce vulnerabilities. In 2019 we expect, therefore, to see an increase in the number of IoT attacks on organizations, as a point of entry into networks and systems of factories and entire industries.

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