Top areas to be improved in recent trends of cybersecurity

The cybersecurity landscape continues to evolve rapidly. While great progress has been made, there are still critical areas for improvement to stay ahead of emerging threats. After consulting with leading experts in the field, I have identified the top 5 areas where the cybersecurity industry needs to advance. Focusing efforts on these aspects will lead to enhanced security and privacy for individuals and organizations in the years to come.

Recent Trends of Cybersecurity

Complex Password Policies

Many companies still solely rely on complex password policies thinking that will be enough to prevent breaches. However, we have seen time and again that complex passwords can still be hacked, while making life difficult for users. According to statistics from the Identity Theft Resource Center, over 80% of hacking related breaches in 2023 involved compromised credentials.

Transitioning to Passkey Authentication

The cybersecurity sector needs to accelerate the move from password authentication to passkey systems. Passkeys apply public key cryptography and use biometrics for user verification. This next generation approach prevents many of the issues seen with passwords:

  • Passkeys cannot be leaked since they utilize asymmetric encryption
  • Phishing attacks are ineffective because passkeys confirm user identity through biometrics like face recognition or fingerprints
  • Brute force attacks do not work as new public keys are used on every login

Major providers like Apple, Google, and Microsoft are already implementing passkey support. But widespread adoption by websites and apps is critical for realizing the benefits across the internet ecosystem. According to one report, the passkey market is predicted to reach $6 billion by 2026 as deployment increases. Accelerating this transition should be a top priority for the cybersecurity domain in the coming years.

Enhanced End User Education

While security technologies are important, users are still a crucial link. Enhanced education is imperative to make individuals less vulnerable to sophisticated social engineering and phishing campaigns. A 2022 industry survey found only 24% of respondents could identify actual examples of phishing emails correctly. As threats get more advanced using techniques like deep fakes, developing intuitive training programs to improve human detection helps address this pressing issue. Rather than dry security tutorials, innovative formats like interactive games or immersive simulations may prove more engaging and effective for end users.

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Cloud Data Security

With cloud adoption accelerating, securing data in the cloud is a rising concern. Sensitive information is moving out of internal networks into cloud provider environments. While these vendors have strong physical and infrastructure security, clients are still accountable for protecting their own data from breaches or misuse. However, current methods for cloud data security remain inconsistent and complex.

Unified Data Protection Platforms

There needs to be a push towards unified platforms that make protecting data in the cloud easier for clients. Rather than separate tools for activities like access management, data encryption, or anomaly detection consolidated solutions would improve usability and provide complete coverage. As an example, some leading providers like Netskope are debuting data security offerings that integrate cloud firewalls, zero trust network access, and advanced threat detection on a single dashboard. Adoption of platforms like this, purpose built for the cloud, can simplify data security for clients while also delivering robust protection.

Automated Remediation Processes

Taking protective measures is important, but improved recovery after an incident is also crucial. With vast amounts of data now stored in the cloud, manual remediation processes are no longer practical. Automating response and remediation workflows using orchestration technology is vital for modern cloud environments. Leading providers have started rolling out automated capabilities to detect and resolve threats quickly with minimal client input, an area that warrants further enhancement. Implementing these intelligent self healing mechanisms proactively can dramatically reduce the impact of cloud data breaches or leaks across networks.

Key benefits provided by robust cloud data protection platforms and protocols

Enhanced Threat Intelligence Sharing

Cyber threats are growing more advanced, coordinated, and stealthier. Yet information sharing between public and private sector security teams remains sporadic and limited. Facilitating more effective threat intelligence collaboration was rated the top game-changing idea for advancing cyber defense by experts across 100 companies.

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Automated Indicator Platforms

In 2024, sharing threat intelligence is still done largely through informal relationships or long established groups. But optimizing this process requires further automation and system integration. Universal platforms are needed that aggregate, validate and instantly distribute attack indicators across all constituents. AI can also be incorporated to detect early attack patterns. Though still developing, coordinated sharing through automated solutions is essential for proactive threat detection and rapid, collective response.

Cyber Threat Alliances

Members only alliances like the Cyber Threat Alliance bring together security vendors for intel sharing. However, further expansion is warranted to be more inclusive. Philosophical shifts towards open collaboration plus technological aid can help formal alliances cut across public sectors, critical infrastructure, big tech, and more. Recent proposals talk of cyber intel leagues between democratic countries. Realizing such partnerships globally can dramatically enhance threat visibility, joint defense, and technological innovation across the ecosystem.

Security for Expanding Attack Surfaces

Traditional security perimeters have disappeared with cloud adoption and remote work. Organizations now have porous borders spanning devices, home networks, cloud platforms and more. Defending exponentially growing attack surfaces with vastly distributed users and data is an escalating obstacle.

Zero Trust and SASE

Two key developments aim to address security gaps for expansive modern environments:

  • Zero trust network access dynamically verifies every user and device attempting network access, reducing reliance on singular perimeter defenses.
  • SASE (Secure Access Service Edge) converges network and security capabilities like cloud firewalls and threat prevention into unified cloud services accessible across geographies and edges.

Investment and integration of these frameworks across networks will be vital in the coming years as attack surfaces continue to grow.

DevSecOps and IaC Security

Application design practices also need to advance alongside network architectures. Integrating security up front into development lifecycles rather than leaving it to operations (known as DevSecOps) is imperative with the scale of software and containers now distributed across clouds. Likewise providing security automation for theinfrastructure as code stacks spinning up global IT environments allows for vulnerability detection and policy enforcement prior to deployment. Adoption of DevSecOps principles and tools like predictive IaC scanning helps manage risks emerging from ever expanding IT footprints.

AI and ML Threat Detection

Sophisticated attackers are leveraging AI to create advanced persistent threats capable of evading traditional defenses. To counter this, ethical adoption of AI and machine learning for enhanced threat detection is required on the defender side.

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Automated Detection and Response

The volume of daily alerts and weak signal security events makes keeping pace impossible manually. AI and ML systems have shown enormous potential for automated detection, investigation, and responses alleviating analyst strain. Adoption of these smart systems trained on adversary tactics reduces dwell times and allows precious resources to focus on higher level tasks. As models evolve, they can also provide predictive intelligence to block entire classes of attack. However, budgets and technical barriers around collecting and labelling quality data for model input remain challenges.

Adversarial Machine Learning

In addition to using AI beneficially, ensuring models themselves remain defended is critical. Attackers are honing techniques like poisoning training data or falsifying input to manipulate AI behavior. Defensive measures such as robust model architectures, adversarial sampling, and anomaly detection must improve to counter this. Deriving security advantages from AI depends wholly on keeping these systems trustworthy, ethical and resilient against subversion. Further maturation of adversarial ML and related frameworks provide a path towards that goal.

Conclusion

The cyber landscape will keep encountering new threats as technology progresses. While no single solution solves the entire problem, advancing priority areas like enhanced authentication, unified data protection, automated intelligence sharing, zero trust architectures and resilient AI systems provide a robust starting point. With cyber risks exponentially escalating, the costs of inaction are dire. Governments must fund critical projects; companies must invest in emerging platforms. By collectively focusing efforts on these foundational areas in need of improvement, we equip ourselves with the mechanisms for managing cyber threats into the future even as attack vectors and adversaries grow more complex. The next breakthrough whether passkeys eliminating passwords or global alliances facilitating coordinated defense may be right around the corner.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the biggest vulnerability around passwords that needs to be addressed?

The over reliance on complex password policies has proven insufficient since compromised credentials remain the major attack vector in breaches. Transitioning towards passkey authentication based on public key cryptography and biometrics prevents many password related threats.

How can individuals help improve security beyond just corporations or technologies?

Enhanced end user education through effective and engaging formats makes people less prone to sophisticated phishing or social engineering schemes. Improving human detection capabilities closes an important loophole.

What is hindering organizations from implementing robust cloud data security?

Disjointed tools lead to gaps, while manual remediation processes cannot scale. Transitioning clients towards unified data protection platforms with automated response and remediation is critical for managing cloud security.

How could threat intelligence sharing be optimized beyond informal relationships?

Automated threat platforms that rapidly share and validate indicators plus expanded public private cyber alliances can dramatically enhance collective visibility and defense against stealthy threats.

Why are concepts like zero trust and DevSecOps gaining importance?

With cloud adoption dispersing data across edges and removing old perimeters, frameworks like zero trust network access and DevSecOps principles help manage security across expansive modern attack surfaces.

MK Usmaan