The Top Cybersecurity Trends to Watch in 2022
Right now, cybersecurity is more important than ever. Major changes to how we work and live — like the pivot to remote work or the growing use of IoT (internet of things) devices — have created new cybersecurity vulnerabilities and challenges.
Businesses will need new strategies to respond to the changing cybersecurity threat landscape. These cybersecurity trends are likely to show where the field is moving in 2022 and how businesses should prepare.
1. Mobile Devices Act as Attack Vectors
Many end-users connect to e-commerce software and other online platforms through their mobile devices. Cybercriminals, in response, are targeting these users by putting greater effort into attacking mobile devices.
In 2019, 93% of all attempted mobile transactions were fraudulent. This incidence of fraud, driven primarily by malicious apps, will continue to challenge businesses and cybersecurity experts in 2022.
2. Ransomware Plays a Growing Role in Attacks
The ransomware attack on Colonial Pipeline was responsible for some of the biggest cybersecurity headlines in 2021. Cybersecurity experts believe that, in 2022, ransomware attacks will likely return to threaten business networks around the world.
The continuing development of ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) will likely help lower the barrier to entry for cybercriminals and make it easier to launch ransomware attacks against major companies.
Familiarity with ransomware will be essential for most businesses in 2022.
3. Hackers Ramp Up Attacks on the Supply Chain
While logistics operations have always been a target for cybercrime, attacks on the supply chain seem to be rising steadily.
The importance of the COVID-19 vaccine “cold chain,” as well as the adoption of new smart devices and digital logistics management solutions, likely have encouraged hackers to target the supply chain more often. Additionally, as in most other industries, the shift to hybrid work has also created new vulnerabilities.
Experts predict that we’ll see an uptick in headlines related to supply chain cybercrime in 2022. Ransomware attacks will likely play a significant role in this surge of activity.
Successful attacks could cause significant disruptions to supply chains around the world, slowing deliveries and making it more difficult to source raw materials.
4. Health Care Organizations Face Cybercrime Wave
The health care sector is another major industry increasingly targeted by hackers. The industry has long struggled with developing effective cybersecurity practices. Christian Dameff, the first known medical director of cybersecurity in the U.S., has gone as far as calling the security situation in health care “dismal.”
These weaknesses — along with the growing value of patient data and the adoption of beneficial but hard-to-secure IoT devices — have made the field a tempting target for criminals.
Some health care administration service providers have even begun offering cybersecurity training programs designed specifically for health professionals and organizations.
In 2022, as hackers target health care organizations more frequently, security will become essential for organizations wanting to protect their networks, as well as the data of patients and staff.
5. 5G Creates New Opportunities and New Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities
The 5G rollout continues, and a large portion of American businesses now have access to the latest iteration of cellular network technology.
The faster speeds and improved connectivity offered by the technology may encourage increased adoption of IoT devices and other solutions that will rely on cell networks, rather than Wi-Fi or wired connections.
This shift will likely have cybersecurity implications. IoT devices are often challenging to secure, despite strides in IoT security made over the past few years. Expanding a business’s security perimeter with new devices, like smart monitors and sensors, also typically results in new cybersecurity difficulties.
For businesses that leverage 5G in 2022, new cybersecurity strategies may be necessary to keep their networks safe.
6. Phishing and Social Engineering Remain Major Challenges
Attacks that rely on social engineering, like phishing attacks, will continue to create difficulties for businesses in 2022. Employees that don’t know how to spot a phish may inadvertently leave their business’s networks open to hackers.
Business-wide security training and investment in anti-phishing systems will help businesses educate their employees on security best practices and limit the effectiveness of these attacks.
How Cybersecurity May Change in 2022
New business practices and the growing value of data will transform the cybersecurity threat landscape in 2022. Businesses that want to be ready should prepare for emerging and intensifying threats — particularly ransomware, phishing, and IoT vulnerabilities.
With the right strategies, it is possible to harden business networks against potential threats — but existing approaches may sometimes not be enough.
This blog was written by an independent guest blogger.
About the Author: Devin Partida
Devin Partida is cybersecurity and technology writer, as well as the Editor-in-Chief of the tech blog ReHack.com.
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