Cybersecurity Predictions for 2020: Cloud and API Issues and Even More Ransomware

2019 was a big year for cybercrime. Attacks on big names like Capital One and Zynga exposed the personal information of hundreds of millions of people. Ransomware attacks alone cost millions of dollars in lost productivity and other costs.

Unfortunately, 2020 will see more of the same. Over the next few years, cybercrime will put around $5.2 trillion in global revenue at risk. Thus, in 2020 everyone needs to stay one step ahead of threats. It’s time to start using evolving technologies to protect yourself in the digital world. 

Key Takeaways from 2019

Advancements in machine learning and artificial intelligence have created invaluable progress in technology. But cybercriminals can leverage these tools in evil ways too.

Enterprise users need to pay particular attention to:

  • More businesses are adopting cloud solutions to promote their business. That’s why increased security is more important than ever. Organizations need to focus on the implementation of container technologies in 2020.
  • Widespread use of automation and safeguarding the accounts that track and use automation. It raises concerns about application programming interfaces and the data packets they contain.
  • More cybercriminals target enterprise networks. They pay even more attention to small and medium businesses. One primary goal is the exfiltration of corporate information via ransomware campaigns.

Cybersecurity Predictions for 2020

Here are five cybersecurity predictions for 2020. These trends will shape the cybersecurity risk horizon this year and into the future.

1.   More Deepfake Attacks to Come

Deepfake headlines swept the media in 2019, but most will see its true danger potential in 2020.

AI and machine-learning models can take videos and comments from YouTube, Facebook, and other platforms. They use them to develop deepfake videos and text to depict a person saying something they’ve never said.

Cybercriminals now manufacture targeted deepfake campaigns. They induce individuals to believe deepfakes to be representations of major and minor figures. The implications are profound.

They can affect all industries and walks of life. Governments can use deepfakes to sway an election. An attacker can show a CEO revealing his organization has missed quarterly earnings targets. These are only two of the many potential ways criminals can use deepfakes. And hackers don’t even need many skills to use this technology. It increases the risk of misinformation campaigns.

2.   Deepfakes Used to Bypass Biometric Technologies

More sectors are embracing the security of biometric technologies. They use facial scans and voice recognition to identify their employees. Thus, cybercriminals are more motivated to bypass biometric security technologies. And they are generating deepfakes to do it.

Businesses need to consider the risks posed by adopting biometric security standards. Increasing employee education about these technologies to prevent attacks is in order.

3.   Ransomware Evolves into Two-Stage Threats

Ransomware has wreaked havoc during the last few years. 2020 will see no differences and, in fact, increase in extortion through ransomware. Criminals will use their skills and knowledge to inflict further damage. Thus, experts predict 2020 will see an increase in two-stage extortion attacks.

Cybercriminals will continue devastating ransomware attacks. Like before, they will encrypt victims files or devices and extort them to return access. But in stage two, the perpetrators will also threaten to disclose confidential information. It can be anything that attackers got their hands during the attack. For individuals, it can be private photos. For businesses — commercial secrets or consumers data.

In the end, these dual-fold attacks can cost businesses billions in 2020. So now’s the time to start using data encryption software for Mac or other devices. Users can only avoid the consequences of ransomware attacks by encrypting their files and making backups.

4.   Focus on Containerized Workloads

In recent years, container-based cloud deployments have grown in popularity. They allow IT teams to put in place microservice upgrades while reusing components. It drives efficiency.

But attacks on containerized applications continue to spread. Development of cloud-born security measures will increase to tackle their issues.

It will create new security configurations via Cloud Workload Protection Platforms (CWPP). They can track and verify the true identity of applications regardless of IP origin.

5.   The Rise of Threats to Cloud Technologies

Application Programming Interfaces (API) form the backbone of cloud technologies. They are susceptible channels that cybercriminals often attack.

2020 will see an increase in API adoption. Thus, their inherent weaknesses will threaten user privacy and security. It’s because APIs are separate from regular security practices and software. They aren’t subject to the same rigorous vetting. Serious vulnerabilities include broken authentication functions, excess data exposure, along with resource-targeting attacks.

Attacks will continue to affect popular social media, messaging, financial, and other apps. Data breaches have already exposed the profiles of millions of users in the last few years.

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