5 Cybersecurity Predictions for 2021
The evolving, and frankly overwhelming pace of the cybersecurity industry makes remaining on the pulse a challenge. The demand to know the latest trends and industry news is a burdening task for professionals across the world, so we have summed up the top five trends influencing the industry over the coming years.
1. Skills shortage & AI
With a predicted 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs remaining unfilled by 2021, companies are turning to artificial intelligence (AI) in hope of a solution. Whilst AI today is a relatively novel concept, it is being praised as the solution to the cybersecurity skills gap.
AI enables instantaneous automation, completing tasks that would typically take days for humans, in a matter of seconds. The magnitude of ‘cybersecurity’ makes it unfeasible for professionals to rigorously manage all aspects of it, particularly when massive amounts of data are involved. By incorporating automation, professionals can focus on anomalies and large-scale threats whilst AI focusses on the data heavy or repetitive tasks.
Possibly the greatest challenge to be faced in the coming decades, cybercrime damages are expected to cost the world $6 trillion US annually by 2021. In 2018 cyber-attacks in the UK rose by an alarming 140 percent whilst an estimated $1.5 trillion in cybercrime profits was generated worldwide.
The inescapable acceleration of cybercrime is highlighted throughout the media on a daily basis. PwC found that “less than half of companies globally are sufficiently prepared for a cybersecurity attack”. Cybercriminals are diversifying attacks and the absence of professional development and knowledge further widens the gap between cyber professional’s skillsets and their ability to address IT threats.
3. Diversity in Cybersecurity
It is anticipated that by the end of 2019 women will form 20 percent of the global cybersecurity workforce. With more organisations like Girls Who Code and Girls in Tech forming, along with conferences like RESET, a cybersecurity conference with a female-only line-up, gender equality is on the rise.
Workplace diversity has been proven to drive better business results. McKinsey research found that workplaces in the “top quartile for racial and ethnic diversity are 35% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry means”.
4. GPDR & Data Protection
It began with GDPR in 2018, but last year was only the catalyst for an influx of tighter regulations and data privacy laws. The global push for better data protection comes after continual scandals from the likes of Facebook, British Airways and Marriott International, which all pushed data protection concerns into the headlines.
Forcepoint found that 83% of their surveyed customers identified GDPR and other regulations as an “important security concern for their organisation”.
With the ICO only ramping up, handing out £280 million in fines in July alone, companies who have overlooked their data protection may be facing significant fines and irreversible reputational damage in the coming years.
5. Security in Cloud Computing
With cloud computing to become a standard aspect of IT by 2020 according to Roy Illsley, principal analyst at Ovum, the need for heightened data protection measures has become a huge concern. Whilst cloud computing allows companies to remain competitive in the digitally driven market, shifting to third party vendors creates security concerns.
The main advice surrounding cloud computing is knowing where your data is, who can access this data and what security measures are in place by third party vendors. Criticisms levelled against the cloud is its dependency on the external platforms which store the data, particularly when considering new regulations like GDPR.
Hybrid cloud solutions, which combine a mixture of on-premise, private and third-party cloud services, are predicated to increase in popularity in attempts to address these criticisms. Companies choose to continue storing sensitive data on-premise whilst moving other data to third-party vendors.
With continued cloud migration anticipated as we move into 2020, greater cloud attacks will be an unavoidable by-product.