According to Fast Company, 2019 could be the year of bigger, badder hacks. Based on the security breaches seen in 2018, experts anticipate cyber threats becoming “more sophisticated, harder to detect, and potentially more dangerous.”
Fast Company outlines four major forms decision makers might see for cyber security attacks this year:
- AI-Powered Malware: Fast Company says that attackers taking this course of action will use malware to “mimic normal behavior in a particular network in order to spread to more machines while avoiding detection.” Experts anticipate that hackers will one day be able to pull off these attacks at machine speed, localized to different environments.
- Smart Phishing: Still relying on AI, attackers using this method will send victims an email or other type of message that look like it’s from a legitimate institution. The goal of that message is to “lure” the victim into providing sensitive data.
Phishing is a common attack: “In a survey by CyberArk Global 56 percent of 1,300 IT security decision makers said that targeted phishing attacks were the top security threat they face,” Fast Company says.
- Open Source Attacks: Fast Company says that this method of attack is often seen in supply chains, and that it has “been steadily rising;” 59 percent of companies reported to have had data breaches caused by a vendor or other third party. Experts advise decision makers to especially keep an eye out for open source software attacks this year.
“Because there’s no standard procedure to vet these people to make sure they’re trustworthy, malicious actors can get into the software supply chain, inject back doors into very well-known open source code, and then get access to many, many environments,” Max Heinemeyer the director of threat hunting at Darktrace, told Fast Company.
- Trust Attacks: A newer form of cyberattack, hackers are able to steal, alter and/or destroy data. Scenarios like this could be seen if a hacker broke into a database of blood samples and labeling, and altered recorded information; the results could lead to patient deaths. Similarly, a “nation-state attacker” might break in and change the votes in an upcoming election, which could affect the election outcomes.