The 5 Most Troubling Information Security Threats for 2019




In the last few years, we have witnessed the most severe and frequent cybersecurity attacks to ever occur in different industries. While organizations ensure that their security professionals are ready to face another year, the data security risk and network breaches cannot be completely ignored. While different aspects of our modern society will have a great advanced technological impact, business leaders will continue to face a dilemma about whether they should adopt new technology and consider training their IT team with the best and most up-to-date information or risk major fallout in case anything goes wrong.

Indeed, training and implementing advanced tech is a great way to stay well-informed about how to deal with corresponding threats. It is crucial that all companies are equipped with information on the latest cyber threats that could be expected during the next year to be confident about their security countermeasures.

Security Threats in 2019

While we cannot be completely calculative about the emergence of new information security threats, we have listed down the top threats that could circulate in 2019 and how your organizations can stay protected.

Worms and Viruses

It is unfortunate how viruses and worms are still considered the most threatening and destructive malicious programs that could infect the core system and make networks inoperable. These programs are designed to destroy essential system data and pose a great threat to the data and information assets. It is very easy for such malicious programs to go unnoticed even if you have security measures in place. These viruses and worms are attached to a host file or system that can be activated by an event or timer. Worms can infect files, spreadsheets, documents, and can even utilize macros to make the system unreachable.

To make it worse, both worms and virus can replicate itself after entering your system. It does not only infect the network but can inadequately harm the information stored inside. They are, in fact, the building blocks that lead to bigger and much serious cyber threats. Providing data security training to your team enables it to make more informed decisions about security threats. They can implement more reliable anti-malware software to protect all systems and networked devices to reduce the vulnerability of the virus to enter or spread.

With the required knowledge, they are in a better position to identify threats early and use the best solutions to remove before the viruses or worms inflict any damage. Additionally, the IT professionals will also be able to keep software up-to-date, both on the core computers and end-user systems.  

Botnets

Another successful game in the cybercrime industry is the botnets. These are the powerful networks of strategically compromised machines that are controlled by hackers to launch massive security attacks. The networks are controlled by Command and Control (C&C), which can be used in any way by the hacker. The compromised machines in the networks can be used for Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attacks, to make the targeted website so vulnerable and busy that it fails to process the real requires. The DDOS attacks are powerful enough to completely crash down a website.

The cybercriminals usually use botnets for crashing a website for ransom and only offer relief once the ransom is paid. Information security is also under major threat under botnets as it can also attack secure systems.  They can attack at a very low frequency to prevent detection. The trained IT team can raise its defense from such threats by ensuring maximum machines protection. The first step is to save your machines from turning into botnet Zombies. This can be done using antivirus software and using the up-to-date operating software. Additionally, it is also important to keep the external machines connected to the network through infrastructure or web server clean. Since the scale of the threat is too high in this zone, it is important to keep a cooperative approach when working with law enforcement agencies, software vendors, and ISP.

Drive-by Downloads

A few decades ago, the best way to keep your computer virus-free was to avoid downloading files that you didn't trust. Unfortunately, cybercriminals became smart too. They came up with the drive-by download, which is a form of a malicious activity that allows an infected code to download from the internet app, browser, or integrated operating system automatically. The URLs are hard to detect because they are designed to look and act like legitimate websites. Having an up-to-date browser is a great way by which IT professionals can detect these malicious sites before visiting them. Also, the safe search tool can be used to navigate such threats.

Phishing Attacks

And right when you thought that the upcoming year will be free of phishing attacks, this scam makes it to the list of one of the most troubling information security threats of 2019. This form of attack is targeted to steal personal information that leads to financial benefits. The attackers take control of the system and steal financial credentials and login information to cease its access to the real owners. The attack is planted at a source that appears trusted and can impersonate banking institutions, websites, and personal contacts. And once you fall trap to the message, the security breach occurs and the information is directly transferred to the malicious source.

Vigilance is the most critical factor in such a case. Since it's the employee who becomes the victim, training your team to avoid such fraudulent activities and sources is the key to prevent phishing attacks.

Tech-Specific Vulnerabilities

The market is loaded with the latest technology. But with every tech opportunity comes new challenges. If the security measures are not updated, the latest tech becomes the weakest link in the organization and opens new doorways for intruders. Instead of relying on the defense mechanism of the systems, it is important to take care of the vulnerabilities on a more professional level by training your employees.

Organizations can play a major role in keeping the data asset protected. These modes of attacks definitely come with solutions that trained individuals can understand and deal with. While no one can guarantee to provide 100% protection to your data, training your data security team can narrow down the chances of threat and breach to a great extent. Online courses and Certifications such as CompTIA Security and Administration Essentials, will assist both teams and leaders come to grips with the information security necessities of the future. 

About The Author
Jasper
Account Manager (SMB) at QuickStart

Jasper Zubairi

Jasper is a passionate performer in the IT training space. With over 5 years of experience in sales, customer support and business development, he has helped a number of businesses meet their IT training needs through e-learning. When he is not working or studying, he likes to spend his time at the gym. You can find more of his blog posts here at QuickStart.