As we move closer to a dependable global digital society, we see an increase in the number of attacks targeting the security of institutions and people. Cybercriminals use advanced technologies to improve their systems and gain better access to personal data and information that should be kept secret.
This raises a series of concerns with regards to the safe use of IoT and whether or not we should trust digital systems to guard our privacy.
After all, we are well past the point of return with more businesses moving their operations to the cloud and more people enjoying the convenience of e-commerce and remote work.
Considering these aspects, we think that the community of IT professionals with experience in cybersecurity should take a closer look at the following cybersecurity problems that plague our current society.
1. ID Theft & Data Privacy
Users’ personal information is some of the most sought-after data in the online world (by both cybercriminals and Internet giants like Google & Facebook). This happens because these data are extremely valuable.
For cybercriminals, personal data unlock doors like bank accounts, email accounts, health insurance, the possibility to apply for a job or anything else as a different person, and so on.
According to identityguard.com, over 16.7 million Americans have already been affected by ID theft and the expectations for the future don’t look promising.
For big tech companies, users’ personal data provide insight into their lives. This is important for marketing campaigns and ads, and more often than not, the collected data is sold to all sorts of third parties. This raises various concerns regarding users’ right to privacy which needs to be further investigated.
From the Colonial Pipeline attack to the Brenntag one, 2021 was full of unpleasant events for big companies. However, ransomware doesn’t only target the big guys – individual users are at risk as well.
Plus, when a big organization is hit by a ransomware attack, the negative impact has a ripple effect and reaches the customers as well. In the case of the Colonial Pipeline, the attack resulted in an artificial fuel crisis that sent millions of Americans in a frenzy.
This had a deep impact on the local and global economy and showed how dependent we all are on these big companies and their services.
3. Cloud Attacks
When you think of cyberattacks that target clouds, the first thing that comes to mind is the iCloud attack during which various celebrities had their “juicy” photos exposed. This was a clear invasion of privacy, but cybercriminals don’t really care about that.
However, this is only the attack that stuck with the public. Still, behind the scenes, cloud attacks happen a lot more often than we’d like to consider. Luckily, reliable cloud services implement heavy security protocols which help keep everything secure.
But in a world where most of us use cloud services (at a personal or professional level), we should discuss this topic a bit more. After all, a company can implement the best security system there is and still lose everything over a cloud hack.
4. Machine Learning (ML) & Artificial Intelligence (AI) Vulnerabilities
We live in an age of impressive technological advancement and we owe this (in part) to new technologies like ML and AI.
However, the same technologies we use to improve systems and make processes more efficient can also be used to identify the best targets for a cyberattack (just to give an example).
Furthermore, these technologies can be used to improve the efficiency of an attack and make it so smart that current technologies may not even detect it on time.
5. Healthcare Cybersecurity
Did you know that healthcare cyber attacks increase by 55% in 2020? The pandemic and a lack of proper cybersecurity systems in most big healthcare institutions turned them into easy targets for cyberattacks.
The risks are incredibly high in this case since many people’s lives depend on the good functioning of medical equipment. Also, the healthcare system collects and processes extremely sensitive patient data. Therefore, healthcare cybersecurity is one of the big problems we need to tackle as soon as possible.
When you gather all the big problems of the cyber world it starts to seem like we don’t really have a choice and our dream of a digital global society may never be realized. However, things are not that dark.
Many organizations and individuals manage to go through life unblemished by cyberattacks by simply using basic protection methods and choosing their collaborators wisely. Successful attacks do happen, but it does take plenty of work to infiltrate these organizations and find their weak spots.
So let’s not lose hope and work together to find better solutions to our current problems.