cyber-security approach, philosophy, business, protection

Prominent changes in the trajectory of the Cyber-security space Part 1

I am certain you have all noticed that there are some changes around us affecting the way the world is formed recently. Technology has rapid changes and as I always say “security is technology’s leg” thus let’s dive into the twelve prominent changes we have seen in the last 5 to 6 years.
This episode will be the first one in a series of two episodes in order to deliver the content in bite-size chunks and make it easier for you to absorb and focus.

Change #1: Shift of Value 

In the previous decade the most valuable asset of an organization or an individual was systems. Firstly-employed tools were expensive and limited in availability. Today everyone can have multiple systems. Everyone in the developed world have multiple devices connected to the internet; computers, tablets, mobile phones, smart watches, smart TVs, a Wi-Fi connected vacuum or even a smart laundry machine and fridge. And the most interesting part is that just one of those has more capabilities than the most sophisticated systems in the past. What all this availability of systems managed to achieve is the exposure of massive amounts of data living on the web which enabled the shift of value from system to data. Whether that data is private, corporate or national the common denominator is that data is currently more valuable than oil.

Change #2: Shift of Requirements from power consumption to mobility

During the previous decade it was all about power consumption in other words how to save power and create systems with higher duration time and lower cost, but we now have entered the decade in which mobility is dominating the technological trends. If a device’s battery is dead, you just change the battery with a spare one and/or use a power bank but what about mobility? Everyone wants to have access to everything from everywhere and with no restrictions and we have entered the era of synchronized devices and data living in the cloud instead of devices.

Change #3: Shift to cyber-attack duration

Going back to the 90’s and considering the first attacks which took place it was all about instant destruction. As soon as the cyber-criminal was on your device your device was destroyed. Nowadays attackers are not about immediate destruction. They remain on your network on average for 229 days before they initiate the final stage of the attack in which you realize that you are under attack because they request money and/or are able to enable a chain of destructive actions against you.

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cyber-security approach, philosophy, business, protection

Change #4: Shift of motives

In the past it was all about immediate destruction. Now it is all about money and profit. Instead of a virus to freeze your systems the common approach is ransomware in which in the best-case scenario if you pay a specific amount you might get your data back. Two points here: 1) why are you willing to pay to get your data back? Because that data is valuable to you 2) the amount of money requested is directly proportional to the value of your data. That is why ransom requests range between hundreds of dollars to millions of dollars. After all, do not forget that the cyber-criminals took their time in your network and the major reason for this is the examination of your data value in order to define what their attack profits are.

Change #5: Shift of the perpetrator

In the 90’s we were talking about these teens who managed to “accidently” hack organizations and agencies by just playing around. Many names of those intelligent teens made the headlines during that decade. However, now we are not talking about teens because since 2008 organized crime and corporate espionage has flourished and since 2012 the main perpetrators of our times are terrorist groups who dominated the illegal internet marketplace in order to collect funds for their physical attacks and increase their power.

Change #6: Shift of Impact

As you noticed from the previously mentioned changes the speedy destruction of a single entity has given its way to mass destruction and a never-ending cycle of profitable benefits from a compromised entity. During modern times it is all about scale of impact and time span implications. As an example, instead of a computer with a virus we are talking about 143 million people facing identity theft from just one attack. In case you did not recognized the example, I am referring to; the Equifax case which hit the headlines in 2017.
Okay, we have covered the first six prominent changes in the trajectory of the cyber-security space. Stay tuned for the second and final episode in which we will cover the other six prominent changes.
Let’s finish this episode with a tweetable:

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cyber-security approach, philosophy, business, protection

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