14 days into 2022 and things look the same as 2021 despite all our *manifestations* to bring good vibes or something. To top it off, if you’re ready for a quiet year in cybersecurity, you won’t find it in 2022.
So what does this year bring?
Well, according to some predictions from Norton, the next 12 months promise to be busy months in the cybersecurity world. The Norton Labs team made six predictions for 2022, here they are.
Cybersecurity Prediction 1: The Cryptocurrency “Oh No” Moment
Cryptocurrency hype is not going anywhere yet, especially now companies/platforms that allow buying and selling crypto are much more mainstream.
However, this will likely result in casual investors not fully understanding the nuances of how cryptocurrencies work.
“Scammers have used these misconceptions to strip people of their coins, and with this new group of new users, we expect a big increase in the number of scams out there,” says Norton.
So, how to find them and avoid being among the scammers? Well, the new scams will look much like the old scams, and there will be a new wave of creative attempts to target this new, larger group of potential victims. So do your research folks and if it smells like a scam, it probably is.
Cybersecurity Prediction 2: Online consumer tracking will prevail
Tracking users’ online behavior has fueled the internet economy for years through targeted advertising and personalization services. It’s kind of divisive as some people like targeted content and some don’t.
While Norton says consumers generally don’t mind some Cookies, at least so-called first-party cookies, which are limited to a specific page. However, third-party cookies are more of a concern. These are called tracking cookies because they follow you as you move around the internet. This makes some people feel spied on.
It is not Everyone bad news, as advances in technology itself are also being made on the legislative front, according to Norton.
Cybersecurity Prediction #3: Your digital identity will grow
COVID has forced the entire planet to work, to communicate, to take care of its health – basically everything on-line. This, Norton says, should ignite a fire among those developing official digital identities.
“There is now a greater need for secure, tamper-proof, and privacy-preserving credentials that can be issued, transmitted, and verified with confidence and ease,” they say.
Norton expects rapid advances in the world of digital identities in 2022.
One thing is certain: Life can only get more digital.
Cybersecurity Prediction #4: Expect more protest, vigilantism, and terrorism
Cyber criminals’ main goal is to make money; They may run phishing campaigns to steal your credentials or scam tech support to steal people’s money.
But the motivation to hack isn’t always that simple. Sometimes it tends to use cyber intrusion as a form of protest. Hacker-activists, or hacktivists, use their craft to achieve political results. They do this by disrupting governments, spreading fear, or leaking information.
Hacktivism and cyberterrorism were very much alive in 2021, revealing information that governments would rather have kept secret. Norton anticipates that these types of cybersecurity attacks will continue, if not increase, due to their reach and potential impact.
Cybersecurity Prediction #5: Scammers will seize the opportunity for disaster
Disasters have always been big business for scammers, and Norton doesn’t see that trend going away any time soon. But they expect more disasters and more money to be moved.
We’ve already seen how scammers never let a crisis go to waste, as scammers spring into action after devastating storms, fires, and throughout the pandemic.
“Whenever money is flowing from insurance companies or the government to victims of natural disasters, there’s someone trying to take advantage of that situation, either by scamming with stolen identities or by scamming people directly,” Norton says.
If the trend continues and there are more natural disasters and extreme weather events, we expect more scammers willing to make money. ugh
Cybersecurity Prediction #6: AI/ML will also make life easier for criminals
Artificial intelligence and advanced machine learning are becoming more accessible to more and more people. But just as it makes life easier for the average consumer, it also makes life easier for the bad guys.
One trend meant to show this is deepfakes, which although they caused a lot of buzz in 2018, are getting better and easier to access, and as the technology gets better and easier to use, it becomes a useful tool for criminals, scammers, stalkers and activists.
There is also the prediction of attacks based on large datasets. With all the data now available from various breaches, criminals could profile people to determine who was more likely to fall for certain types of attacks or scams.
Stay safe out there folks, it’s looking grim.