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2020 could bring a whole new breed of cybersecurity threats

(Image credit: Image source: Shutterstock/jijomathaidesigners)

Abusing automated cybersecurity tools, taking advantage of unstructured data and leveraging 5G networks to mount insanely powerful attack are just some of the tactics cybercriminals are expected to employ in 2020 and beyond.

A poll of the Infosec Europe community – mostly C-level professionals in the cybersecurity space, found that we may very well see a whole new breed of cybersecurity threats in the coming year.

Next year, more security automation tools will be deployed, according to Deloitte cyber risk partner, Peter Gooch. If done well, it will ensure organisations tackle threats with agility. However, when executed poorly, it will significantly complicate things. Gooch also believes hackers would increasingly target unstructured data to both hide and launch attacks, which means businesses must implement robust governance.

Also, with 5G on the horizon, he expects a much greater attack surface and data flows to become harder to follow.

On the other hand, for Mark D. Nicholls, Head of Information Security & Governance at housing association, Peabody, true AI is both a blessing and a curse. “Imagine a DDOS attack powered by true AI,” he says.

“As consumers strive for a smarter, more connected world we will see more attacks targeting connected devices as a means to an end. This is not new, but the attack surface will get bigger. We must continue to educate to ensure humans are our strongest line of defence."

Many other topics were touched upon at Infosec Europe, including GDPR, the skills shortage, data breaches and new security approaches, but one thing everyone agrees on – the industry needs to work more closely together if it is to tackle what’s to come.