Data breaches and intrusions have plagued businesses and individuals since the internet’s introduction, but U.S. founding fathers weaved privacy into the nation’s makeup via the U.S. Constitution. And everyone worldwide is entitled to that same privacy, especially when it comes to personal or business data.
Each year, cybersecurity experts strive to find the best strategies to ensure improved cybersecurity to protect systems and data. Heading into 2023, those goals haven’t changed, for better or worse.
Let’s explore how cybersecurity experts are working to create a better cybersecurity landscape for everyone but cybercriminals as we lean into 2023.
A Brief Review of Cybersecurity Events Over the Past Few Years
No one besides those ramping up cybersecurity tactics is immune to potential cybersecurity events. Over the past three to five years, there have been countless breaches, including:
- The 2017 Equifax breach, which resulted in compromised data for nearly 150 million Americans.
- In 2018, 92 million MyHeritage users experienced a compromise of their account details.
- In 2018, it was discovered that Marriot experienced a cyberattack that went undetected for years.
- The 2019 data breach against American Medical Collection Agency, a large-scale healthcare debt collection company. The incident lasted from August 2018 to March 2019, when the intrusion was discovered.
- The world was besieged by an unprecedented pandemic from 2020 onward, but that hasn’t stopped hackers from doing their nefarious business. In fact, everyone’s distraction allowed for increased vulnerabilities, which cybercriminals never let go to waste. Businesses are now recovering and seeking new ways to secure their data and systems.
The Most Common Types of Cyberattacks Today
Cyberattacks can target anyone or business, from solopreneurs to startups and healthcare organizations, government entities, and large corporations. This cybercrime diversity means hackers need to diversify their criminal activity to ensure the best possible outcome in infiltrating systems and hijacking data.
Some common online attacks are classics, such as phishing and email scams, but over the past few years, there have been more cyberattack strategies than ever before:
- Ransomware — Ransomware is a type of malware that uses a special encryption key only known to the cyber attacker. It bars access to accounts for legitimate users and often features a ransom, demanding payment via untraceable cryptocurrency.
- Malware — Malware is any code or program created with the goal of harming a person’s or business’s computer, server, or network. Many people are familiar with this type of cyberattack since it has been around so long and includes various other attacks, such as spyware, viruses, worms, trojans, bots, and ransomware.
Other common types of cyberthreats include DOS and DDOS, man-in-the-middle (MITM), cross-site scripting (CXX) attacks, zero-day exploits, and many more.
Where Are Businesses Erring When Seeking Cybersecurity Solutions?
With clever and bad-intentioned hackers roaming the cyber landscape, it is no wonder good actors continually strive to fight bad actors. It is the way of the world, so there is little wonder that cyberspace is not immune to threats.
One of the best ways to avoid cybersecurity intrusions is to understand why they happen. You can learn a great deal from data breaches of other businesses and any issues you identify in your own business.
Here are some top reasons cited for cybersecurity issues:
- Human error is the premier cause of cybersecurity events.
- Lost devices, such as laptops, smartphones, etc., with company data and without proper encryption.
- Social engineering tactics, which include phishing and email scams, leading the user to break information security protocols.
- Poor access control, providing permission to too many users without a need-to-know status.
- Lack of proper data encryption, leaving data vulnerable. As long as data is fully encrypted, it is meaningless to hackers.
3 Paths to Peak Cybersecurity in 2023
As a business or IT leader, finding the right path to enhanced cybersecurity is probably high on your list of priorities. It’s always better to avoid a cyberattack early and report it quickly than to deal with the post-event PR stresses.
Here are three paths to cybersecurity enhancement to help you this coming year and beyond.
1. Boost End-User Awareness With Consistent Training
Arming your employees, managers, authorized consultants, and executives with the latest and most crucial information in cybersecurity is vital to success in 2023 and forward. Considering how many of the commonly cited reasons for breaches are associated with humans, it’s the perfect place to start your path to peak cybersecurity.
Here are some ways to add more information security awareness and vigilance to your business via various campaigns:
- Provide regular training sessions for new hires and veterans to stay sharp about new and ongoing threads and your business’s cybersecurity policies.
- Ask departmental managers to take the lead, reminding employees about policies and how essential they are to the security of your data and business.
- Develop a culture of sharing threats or potential threats. Ask all employees to report anything suspicious to ensure rapid attention and action if necessary.
2. Increased Data Privacy Laws, Regulations, and Enforcement
If your business was in operation from 2017 to 2018, you probably remember — and now know — working to ensure General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance. It was a massive worldwide endeavor to protect the data of European Union (EU) citizens’ data as consumers.
GDPR wasn’t the first regulation, and it hasn’t been, nor will it be the last. Think back to HIPAA for healthcare, GLBA for finance, and FERPA for education, and regulatory measures have been invaluable for the past few decades to enhance data privacy protections.
An increasing number of state government bodies are recognizing the need for consumer data privacy laws, such as the California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA), passed shortly after GDPR went into enforcement.
It’s crucial that your team remains aware of the latest regulations and laws and stays current to avoid expensive non-compliance fines and to protect your system and customers.
3. Advanced Encryption Security Solutions in Developer Environments
According to a February 2022 CSO article from Maria Korolov, reporting on a recent industry study, attacks against the software supply chain have increased by more than 300% compared to 2020.
The most common tactics hackers use in this environment include:
- Installing malicious code in popular open-source packages
- Exploiting existing vulnerabilities
- Infiltrating and compromising continuous integration (CI) and continuous delivery (CD) pipeline tools
- Taking advantage of hard-coded credentials and other security issues
Looking into 2023, there is little doubt that cybercriminals will step up their efforts, targeting complex IT infrastructures. Refer to the SolarWinds attack to see how such a cyberattack plays out.
The path to cybersecurity success for DevSecOps teams lies in developing zero-trust architectures and creating advanced encryption solutions. It is crucial for IT and organizational leaders to:
- Implement multi-factor authentication to bar DevOps pipeline personnel from entry.
- Use private code libraries, only relying on those reviewed and approved.
- Create teams focused on patching systems, ensuring everything deployed is up-to-date.
- Scan the architecture regularly to detect any potential vulnerabilities.
Do You Have a Plan in Place to Boost Cybersecurity for 2023?
Whether you need to focus on enhancing your DevOps security or improving your data governance compliance through data and applied AI strategies, ethical hacking, or vulnerability analysis, Baufest can help. Contact us to book a discovery meeting to discuss your cybersecurity needs and all we can do for you.