Cybersecurity Blog: The Cyber Scene is evolving, are you?

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2016 was another challenging year in cybersecurity. With greater awareness among organizations and the general public of the risks, and sizable investments by companies in best-of-breed security technologies, will we see improvements in 2017?

According to Joseph Blankenship, Forrester Senior Analyst, things will likely get worse in 2017 before they get better.

This was the unfortunate news Blankenship shared with 35 executives at this month’s Leidos Executive Retreat. Blankenship joined us to present key findings from Forrester’s 2016 Global Business Technographics Security Survey and top cybersecurity predictions for 2017.

1. External Threat Actors Will Diversify

Our current political climate is encouraging more interest by hacktivist and nation state actors to disrupt our government and economy. Additionally, the anonymity of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies enables cybercriminals to more easily monetize data, which in turn makes it easier to recruit people, in particular insiders. In fact, the ease at which employees can monetize their credentials and data access is already creating a rise in insider threats.

2. Healthcare Breaches Will Intensify

Expect to see healthcare data breaches become as large and common as retail breaches, thanks in part to the lack of spend on IT security within the healthcare industry. Research finds that healthcare/public sector only spends 23% (compared to 28% across industries) of their IT budget on security. Also, continued M&A activity in the healthcare space, which leads to mergers of disparate systems, creates technology vulnerabilities hackers take advantage of.

3. Hackers Will Breach Networks Through IoT Devices

Forrester predicts that as many as 500,000 IoT devices will be compromised in 2017. With IoT security technology still relatively immature, hackers are finding new opportunities to breach networks through routers, web cameras, and the like.

This issue is not going unnoticed. According to Forrester’s survey of security decision makers, 66% rate securing IoT devices as a high priority for their business over the next year.

4. Talent Gap Will Demand a New Strategy

With an industry-wide shortage in security professionals, CISOs continue to be challenged staffing internal security teams. In fact, 62% of enterprises report not having enough security staff. As a result of the talent gap, CISOs will be forced to allocate as much as 25% of their budgets to external expertise and automation technologies.

5. People Could Begin to Lose Faith

Given the current cybercrisis and allegations of foreign national involvement in the recent election, people could begin to lose faith in the integrity of global institutions. Data breaches, privacy violations, and noncompliant handling and use of customer data undermine customer trust, which in turn may lead to more organizations losing customers in 2017.

More cybersecurity insights…

To learn what security professionals around the globe indicate are their biggest challenges and where they plan to focus their efforts in 2017, as well as Forrester’s take on how organizations can address the forthcoming predictions, watch the 2017 Cyber Trends Forecast video.

2017-outlook-and-trends-faq-btn.pngYou can also download the FAQ companion piece, 2017 Outlooks and Trends, to gain additional insights from Forrester on how to better manage your security operations and prepare for the future.