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The Top Cyber Threats

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The exponential growth of technology and the continuous digitization across different industries has caused a direct increase in cyber threats.

The looming threat posed by hackers looking to steal information has become an alarming reality for virtually all organizations and individuals, and no company is too small to be at risk. A report by Accenture reveals how cybercrime could cost companies $5.2 trillion globally over the next five years, despite current efforts to stop malicious cyber activities. This is because current strategies such as verification and security tools can easily be learned and outsmarted by hackers. Drew Smith points out how even remote workers are vulnerable to cyber breaches, which should push cybersecurity to the top of every company's list of concerns. 

To keep up with the increasing risks around valuable information, the tech and data around cybersecurity are constantly changing. This means companies have to be resilient when it comes to updating their systems to make sure they aren’t prone to attacks. That said, here are some of the top cyber threats businesses need to be aware of this year: 


Evasion techniques may infiltrate systems that use artificial intelligence

Although AI is providing several industries with much-needed efficiency and automation, this isn’t to say that it’s not vulnerable to threats, especially when it comes to what experts call evasion techniques. In the ‘2019 Threat Predictions Report’ published on BizTech Magazine, McAfee researchers reported that evasion techniques, or tech that helps avoid detection, are already utilizing AI to automate target selection. The danger of this is how hackers will be able to use smart programs to create widespread damage without having to engage themselves. This makes the hacks much harder to detect and prevent.


Malware operators may cash in on cryptocurrency

Last year, a report from CNN detailed how hackers infiltrated the free text-to-translation tool Browsealoud and injected the Coinhive cryptocurrency mining malware script into its JavaScript codebase. Although the hackers only got away with $24, the threat is still something that shouldn’t be taken lightly. “Cryptojacking” can quietly steal resources to make greater profits with fewer risks. Business owners need to be aware of other types of crypto-malware, too, like wallet stealers and clipboard hijackers.


The online gaming industry may be the next targets

If your business revolves around or has anything to do with online gaming, it certainly isn’t safe from hackers. Cybercriminals are able to hack and gain access to computers through gamers. Tech Republic highlights how these hacks can lead to stolen credit card information, as well as valuable game tokens. Through this method, they would also be able to pose as individual gamers to get access to even more personal information. 

The cybersecurity landscape changes so fast that it’s difficult for companies to keep up. Even when a business is able to block one threat, there is always another to watch out for. These crimes range from illegal online markets to IP theft, data trading, and ransomware. The consistent increase in cyber threats is alarming and has naturally led to a huge demand in cybersecurity experts that the industry is struggling to meet. In 2016, the cybersecurity industry was in dire straits, with Maryville University claiming that it was facing a 1.5 million shortfall in jobs, and the situation has only gotten worse since then. In fact, the shortfall in cybersecurity jobs is expected to reach 1.8 million by 2020 in the US alone — an alarming number given the aforementioned types of cyber threats. 

All in all, continuously evolving cyber threats require vigilant training and preparation for security engineers everywhere. The problems listed above form only a small part of the malicious attacks a company may face, which can range from manipulating invoices to cloud-based hacks. Investments in security measures and ethical hackers are now more crucial than ever in the face of such dangers. Only time will tell if these measures are effective enough to prevent massive data breaches or major financial loss, as industries struggle to keep up with the ever-changing risks that are posed by these technological advances.

 

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