2020 was a turbulent year for businesses, and 2021 wasn’t much better. However, the worldwide pandemic is really only the beginning of all the things that businesses have to worry about this year. New digital threats are also causing problems and bringing many companies to their knees. If you want to survive into the next year and beyond, you need to tackle these cybersecurity issues now. Below are seven cybersecurity considerations for 2021.
Easily, one of the biggest digital threats to confront businesses in 2021 was ransomware. Ransomware is a form of malware that is accidentally installed via a Trojan hidden in an internet file or e-mail attachment. In other cases, it is purposely injected into a company’s computers by a malicious actor. Normal malware was annoying enough, but ransomware takes it to another level. Not only does it lock down all your computer systems and data via encryption, but it also requests a ransom be paid for your computers to be unlocked.
DDOS is an acronym that stands for distributed denial of service. It is a kind of attack that hackers make to take a website offline to ensure it isn’t available to customers or anyone else. It accomplishes this by overloading a website’s servers with an almost endless number of requests from different IP addresses. Usually, this traffic is directed from computers that have been infected with malware by the hacker. You need to have the infrastructure in place to stop DDOS attacks if you wish to keep a popular website online in this climate.
A big issue in 2021 has been data privacy. Data that should be private regarding businesses, their customers, and more have been leaked onto the internet. In certain cases, such leaks make big headlines such as has been the case with websites like Facebook and Twitch. If you want to protect your data, you should invest in a data control platform that gives you direct control over your data privacy. A solution such as a private cloud or a managed infrastructure environment may be the best solution for your company.
Something else you should look out for in 2021 and beyond is spoofing. Spoofing can be thought of as the masking of malicious communication with your website or network as a friendly source. You can think of it as a villain using a disguise to fool you. While there have been many different spoofing methods used in the past, in 2021, one of the most popular choices for cybercriminals has been social media spoofing. Not every friend request you get on social media may be from an actual customer. Some may be automated bots on phishing expeditions.
Something new that your business should worry about in 2021 is fileless malware. Strange enough, this is a form of malware that does not require actual files to operate. Instead, such a malware attack is orchestrated purely through the memory of a running computer. A file is never written to a computer’s hard disk. Instead, malicious code is injected straight into a server or other computer’s memory through some kind of discovered exploit. Such attacks can be quite complex and hard to detect.
As the cloud has gained steam with high adoption rates from businesses, cybercriminals are adjusting their methods in kind. The cloud of course presents many benefits to businesses. It adds convenience and slashes costs. However, the cloud is not perfect. Exploits have been discovered in many cloud servers that can make them vulnerable to attacks. If you use cloud services, make sure the cybersecurity and data backup procedures of your cloud vendor are up to speed.
Lastly, you should consider the danger presented by zero-day attacks. The zero-day part of this term refers to the new versions of software that have just been released. As such, the developer does not have time to create an update to patch out the vulnerability. This is when hackers and other cybercriminals make their move. As long as the software is unpatched, your systems remain vulnerable. This is why real-time scanning for all possible attacks, even undocumented ones, is so important. Only being protected against known threats is not a working strategy especially in 2021.
This can happen on any type of device so it is best to set your device to manual update and only update to a new version of Windows or iOS once some time has passed. Make sure that you are up to date on the details of the latest Windows 11 software or up to speed on iOS 15 tips and tricks.
Overall, the landscape of digital threats to companies is always changing and evolving. You need to stay ahead of the curve both this year and every year. If you don’t try to keep your cybersecurity up to date regarding the latest threats, it may soon be too late.