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predictions 2017 SIMPLE

predictions 2017 SIMPLE TWIST OF FATE IN PART 2 OF OUR LOOK AT WHAT THE EXPERTS ARE PREDICTING FOR SECURITY IN 2017, THE BIG MESSAGE IS THAT THINGS ARE GOING TO GET WORSE - AND NOT NECESSARILY BEFORE THEY GET BETTER! All-out attacks on organisations have been getting worse, with no business, small, medium or vast, escaping the attention of those out to tear a hole in their defences. The now common mantra of, 'Not if, but when', may have become tiresome to the ears, but that doesn't make it any less true. Any enterprise that assumes it can keep its head down and not attract attention is sadly deluded, because everyone is a target now. That's mainly down to the fact that hackers can infiltrate just about any organisation with relatively little effort expended. They have the tools, technology and techniques to prise open defences that might have been considered watertight by those who put them in place. However, the fly in the ointment with 'being safe' is that such a proposition is in the eyes - and indeed the mind - of the beholder. We all like to think we have every base covered, but how rigorously have those defences been tested? With robust penetration testing to the point of destruction? With the right weapons to ward off zero-day attacks? Those who have invested heavily - and we are certainly not simply talking money here, for many an enterprise has discovered, literally to its cost, that throwing money at the problem doesn't necessarily solve it - may indeed be safer than they were, though safety is such a relative thing. Those who will be best equipped to see off the attackers will be ones that have invested wisely. LIGHT IN A DARK TUNNEL So, what other predictions are on offer for the rest of this year? Happily, there are also upbeat sentiments in what have largely become days of doom and gloom, with Greg Day, VS & CSO, Palo Alto Networks, seeing 2017 and early 2018 as exciting years, in terms of evolving our cybersecurity capabilities as businesses prepare for the May 2018 deadlines imposed by upcoming EU legislation changes. "This is a rare opportunity to step back and take stock of our capabilities, and to validate if they are still fit for purpose, both for the approaching deadline and for the future thereafter. This is a welcome driver to look to the future, as security professionals are often so caught up in the ongoing enabling 08 computing security March/April 2017 @CSMagAndAwards www.computingsecurity.co.uk

predictions 2017 technology innovations and managing evolving cyber risks. "2017 is the year that businesses need to get prepared for the May 2018 deadline for upcoming EU legislation in the form of the GDPR and NIS Directive. This will mean that businesses finally have to gain control of the mountains of data they have gathered and generated, and to understand both the value and risks they create for the business. We can expect some early examples to be made, as the EU looks to ensure that businesses take their digital societal responsibilities seriously. "Cybersecurity leaders will need to validate that their cybersecurity capabilities are relevant to the risk they face and that they leverage current best practices, referred to as 'state of the art', with clearly documented processes and measures. Too often security experts continue to hold onto legacy practices as they perceive that continuing to do the same things as before is enough; as such, 2017 will be the year for change." Day also warns that businesses will be vulnerable as they are immobilised by the confusion of what a good next-generation endpoint strategy looks like. "With the growing volume of unique attacks, organisations have, for a long time, been looking for new solutions to either complement or replace signature-based approaches. However, with many different new approaches to choose from, businesses are hesitating for too long while they look for validation to define their future next-generation endpoint strategies. With the growth of ransomware, one instance has become one too many and now is the time when next-generation capabilities are needed." WIDER RANSOMWARE We will see the cybersecurity landscape continue to change. "Ransomware will continue to have business impact. Expect ransomware to target a broader range of platforms and to further leverage historical cyberattack techniques, such as APT-style attacks, as those behind them look to increase their profits. While this threat remains lucrative, it will continue to be a focus for attackers, which could distract them from developing threats leveraging other areas of technology." Meanwhile, with the continuing growth of information to draw on, in order to prevent and protect against cyberthreats, we can only expect more security events that need to be managed, Day adds. "The scale of security experts has not and will not keep pace, therefore businesses must rethink how and where human skills should be leveraged in cybersecurity. Today, there are too many siloed human-dependent cybersecurity processes that, with evolving best practices, can and should be consolidated and automated. In a market with limited skills, usability and automation should be treated as being equally important as capability." He also feels that most companies will confirm whether cyber insurance will become a part of their investment strategy, and will realise that insurers are a valuable point for CISOs wishing to translate and validate risk to senior executives to help better understand their business's cyber risks. As to how much of this crystal ball-gazing will materialise, he adds: "The only near guarantee I can give is that the digital world will continue to have amazing and positive impact on our lives, and I'm proud to be part of the global cybersecurity community that supports its enablement." INTERNET OF INSECURE THINGS According to Darran Rolls, CTO, SailPoint, cyber-attacks are going to continue and increase in scale, "but we're seeing a greater acceptance of the fact that an attack will happen, leading to an increased level of fatigue. As a result, in 2017 we're going to see an increase in domestic attacks on the Ettienne Reinecke, Dimension Data: no such thing as a digital strategy - just strategy in a digital world. Darran Rolls, SailPoint: more attacks on government and critical infrastructure - what he refers to as the 'Internet of Insecure Things'. www.computingsecurity.co.uk @CSMagAndAwards March/April 2017 computing security 09