Every year has seen changes and evolutions in cyber crime and security, and 2018 is no exception. As trends change, businesses need to be constantly educating themselves on cyber security solutions to mitigate risk and protect against cyber attacks. Here are three types of platforms that every company should include in their security operations, as well as the 2018 trends that are driving innovation and change.
It’s always a good bet to start with the basics, which means that many businesses already have at least some semblance of a general security system in place. However, if you don’t, or if you haven’t reviewed your system security solution in a while, it’s worth taking a second look at the building blocks of your business’s cyber security this year.
System security covers a number of categories, including network, data, application, mobile data, and web security, with a focus on protecting end users from dangerous activity and web content. Anti-malware, email encryption tools, and firewalls all fall into system security, and each area should be covered by one or more security solutions.
2018 Trend: IoT Security
A vast network of connected devices, called the Internet of Things or IoT, has changed how society thinks about connectivity. Prior to the widespread adoption of connected devices, connectivity meant screen time: how much time consumers spent on their phones, tablets, or computers. Now, virtual assistants, smart TVs, networked security cameras, vehicle fleets, and even business telephone systems are connected, and just like any connected device, the Internet of Things presents a security risk to any individual or organization using them.
IoT security presents a unique challenge due to its scale and the relative simplicity of the interfaces of many connected devices. Any IoT security solution requires large-scale threat monitoring and data analytics capabilities, so if implementing IoT security for your business isn’t currently feasible, it should at least be on your radar as use of connected devices expands.
Security Risk Assessment
While system security tools are designed to be accessible to end users, tools for security risk assessment are geared more towards IT professionals and dedicated security teams. End user protection may be the first step towards business cyber security, but security risk assessment tools are the foundation of a business’s security operations.
Risk assessment platforms are critical because they help users search for and evaluate vulnerabilities and respond to attacks, forming the basis for management of all other security initiatives. Different tools include security information and event management (SIEM), incident response, and vulnerability management.
2018 Trend: Threat Intelligence
Many people may remember IBM Watson, the question answering computer system that trounced human opponents on the game show Jeopardy! Watson, now used to recommend treatments for lung cancer, was one of the first introductions the public had to machine learning, a step towards artificial intelligence that allows machines to accumulate and process knowledge without human interference.
IBM Watson was not the first system to use machine learning, and new systems are being developed every day for a multitude of reasons. One is cyber crime. Another is security. Locked in a digital arms race, businesses and organizations are using security solutions capable of learning to combat similarly “smart” attackers. Monitoring platforms that utilize threat intelligence networks can constantly update their parameters to seek out threats and vulnerabilities that may occur, making them powerful tools in an evolving security landscape.
Identity security tools can be used by everyone in a business, from dedicated security professionals to end users. From access management and user provisioning tools for IT staff to password managers and multi-factor authentication (MFA) for company-wide use, the goal of identity security is to ensure that only authorized users are accessing company data.
Password and account security is often one of the first lessons internet users learn about cyber security, but it’s also one of the weakest points of a company’s security due to user error. Sharing account details, reusing passwords, and failing to utilize multi-factor authentication can make company accounts easier to access. The use of identity security tools can help hold users accountable for account security protocol, and lock down accounts should unauthorized access occur.
2018 Trend: Risk-Based Authentication
Much like threat intelligence security solutions, risk-based authentication relies upon automated security actions that take place within approved parameters. For example, if the account of a salesperson were to access finance reports in the middle of the night, an identity security platform with risk-based authentication capabilities could lock that account until the source could be verified, or until the authorized user provided authentication. This is the type of threat that might have been missed while security professionals were off duty, but with an automated solution, business can enjoy around-the-clock protection.
This may sound like an advanced technology, but you’ve probably already experienced risk-based authentication in your personal or work life. If your email account or online banking has ever asked you to verify your login from a new device or location, that’s risk-based authentication. There are quite a few highly regarded softwares available for businesses of all sizes, and 2018 may be the year to look into this powerful new solution.
Protecting your business against cyber crime and data breach is an ongoing process, one that changes constantly as attackers and defenders alike discover new applications for technologies. By staying informed on the latest trends in cyber security, your company will be better equipped to deal with future threats.