4 Key Reasons to Prioritize Cybersecurity This Year

cybersecurity conceptIn recent years, organizations across all industries around the globe have experienced data breaches and grappled with rapidly evolving cybersecurity threats, such as ransomware, phishing attacks, DDoS attacks, and more. While many of us probably hope that things will get better in 2019, it doesn’t look like cybercriminals are going to slow down this year.

If anything, a variety of factors – from ever-evolving IT security threats to cybercrime as a service to security related laws – make it more important than ever for all kinds of organizations to make implementing and maintaining a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy a top priority. If you aren’t already focused on IT security, here are a few key facts to consider while determining your goals and to-do list for the rest of the year.

1. Cybercrime is a growing threat on a global scale. Cyberattacks are among the top 10 risks in terms of likelihood (ranking at No. 5) as well as the top 10 in terms of impact (ranking at No. 7), according to The Global Risks Report 2019 from the World Economic Forum. Additionally, massive data fraud and theft ranked No. 4 in the list of top 10 risks by likelihood.

Most of the respondents of the survey the report was based on expected higher levels of cyberattack risk in 2019, leading to disrupted operations as well as theft of both data and money.

2. It’s easier than ever for people to enter the world of cybercrime. The phenomenon of cybercrime as a service has made it so that anyone – even those without expert-level hacking skills and technical knowledge – can carry out cyberattacks due to the availability of exploit kits for lease, hacking-related tutorials, and other tools and services via the Dark Web, a sub-layer of the internet where users can operate anonymously.

That means there are more malicious actors out there than ever before, making it imperative that organizations stay on top of cybersecurity.

3. 5G deployments will create new vulnerabilities. In 2019, we’ll see more activity surrounding 5G network deployments, according to Symantec. The International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that the overall 5G and 5G-realted network infrastructure market will expand significantly in the next few years, from $528 million in 2018 to an expected $26 billion in 2022.

As 5G networks get established, a growing number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices will connect directly to those networks rather than going through WiFi, Symantec states. That means those devices will become more vulnerable to cyberattacks.

4. There are a growing number of cybersecurity related laws and regulations to follow.
Because cybercrime is not only bad for businesses but is also a threat to public safety and government security, public officials continue to introduce new cybersecurity regulations that various organizations – from government agencies to healthcare providers to financial institutions – must comply with or face significant penalties.

The most recent high-profile example of this is the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which took effect last year. Additionally, in 2018, at least 35 states and Puerto Rico introduced or considered upwards of 265 bills/resolutions concerning cybersecurity, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Overall, the growing regulation of and scrutiny surrounding cybersecurity practices means that suffering a data breach comes at an increasingly higher cost for many organizations.

These are only some of the reasons why every business – regardless of size, location, or industry – should keep IT security top of mind this year. Of course, given the speed with which the threat landscape changes and the cybersecurity expert/talent shortage, it can be extremely challenging to devise, implement, and maintain a truly comprehensive approach to security.

Partnering with a managed service provider that can serve as your organization’s trusted advisor and vet vendors and solutions can make a big difference. Our team of cybersecurity experts works with a wide range of solutions from providers in our extensive partner network. Additionally, we have our own cybersecurity offerings. To learn more, feel free to contact us by calling 877-599-3999 or emailing sales@stratospherenetworks.com.

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