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Cyber-Security – 2018 Trends and Predictions

Published on 08 February 18
Every year, cyber-crime gets more advanced, with offenders getting more skilled and constantly finding new ways to go around newest protection software and methods. This ongoing battle leaves no individual, business or organization safe. The year 2017 was quite eventful in this sense – we saw huge security breaches such as the one at Equifax, as well as some big ransomware attacks, including WannaCry and NotPetya. So what will 2018 bring to the table and how should we protect ourselves from new threats?
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Internet of things
In the forthcoming years, the number of things included in the internet of things is not going to get smaller. More and more devices will be connected to the internet infrastructure and attackers will try to use this and abuse the most vulnerable software. It will be especially critical to secure medical devices (e.g. pacemakers) from malware and ransomware. With stakes getting higher, we can expect new legislation that will regulate this field and help protect at least the most vital points in the network that is predicted to incorporate 30 billion devices by the year 2020.
Social media

Cyber-criminals are definitely going to take full advantage of the ongoing development of social media. The strength of social networks is in their numbers, but in terms of security that might be their biggest weakness. A huge number of registered people means, naturally, that there’s a huge number of people with little knowledge of technology connected to the network. All of them are easy targets. In the upcoming period, we should expect that organizations will arrange training programs and conceive incident response plans for their employees, thus leaving nothing to chance.

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Data protection regulations and standards

In terms of legislation, there’s one regulation program already announced that we know will change the cyber-security game. It’s the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which will come into force in May 2018 in all countries of the European Union. The point of this legislation is strengthening data protection. However, complying with the prescribed standards isn’t going to be easy at all. This act is harsh on all involved parties and three quarters of cloud services weren’t fulfilling the requirements as of September 2017. GDPR will definitely shake the industry and there will be companies that will have to close because they won’t be able to deal with it, both financially and in terms of infrastructure.

Another set of standards that could come into focus again this year is Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). The prescribed protocols in storage and encryption of payment card data have changed several times in the past, adapting to new conditions. This issue should become more important following the Equifax breach, and the key will be enforcing full PCI DSS compliance for companies that keep cardholders’ data stored. The rapid development of e-commerce and the rise in the number of online transactions in general will also make everyone pay more attention to this aspect of online security.


Multi-factor (MFA) and biometric authentication aren’t really novelties in the world of cyber-security. But 2018 should be the year when these will become more common and widespread. As for MFA, it’s becoming cheaper and more accessible for small businesses, and they will try to use this fact to their advantage. Also, biometric authentication has already become an everyday thing for smartphone users, and we can expect this trend to become even more popular in the years to come.

Of course, there’s a number of other issues that will gain attention this year, from new trends in machine learning to cryptocurrency market abuse. The race between hackers and everyone who’s trying to stop and prevent all sorts of cyber-crime will continue, and experts estimate that we will see at least three huge breaches this year, affecting more than 100 million accounts. In any event, 2018 definitely won’t be a dull and monotonous year for anyone dealing with the issue of cyber-crime.

This blog is listed under IT Security & Architecture Community

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