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Cybersecurity innovations to look forward to in 2023

If you are fortunate enough to avoid a hacking hangover this holiday season, you can consider yourself one of the lucky ones. But with a barrage of attacks awaiting every user and business in 2023, what cybersecurity innovations can we expect to dominate our newsfeeds next year?

As we prepare to enter 2023, businesses are beginning to accept that the location of their staff or the device they use isn't as important as it used to be. Instead, leaders are turning to data-driven decision-making, and workplace culture is more about what you do than where you do it. Welcome to a cloud-first hybrid world where the barriers between online, personal, and professional are disappearing.

As flexibility takes priority, businesses and everyday users share the challenge of protecting their data security and privacy as they seamlessly drift from multiple devices and networks. In addition, 2023 will likely add more shiny collaboration, productivity, and videoconferencing tools that promise to make our lives easier. But what cybersecurity trends and innovations can we expect to see dominating our newsfeeds?

The rise of hacktivism

Global conflict hit the headlines in 2022 for all the wrong reasons everywhere, from the Middle East to Eastern Europe. One of the significant trends we can expect to see dominating in 2023 is politically or socially motivated hacking and state-sponsored cyberattacks against adversaries. Politically motivated attacks can quickly cripple businesses, industries, and entire economies or even create unrest across a region.

We can also expect to see an increase in the weaponizing of deep fakes similar to what we have already seen with President Joe Biden seemingly singing along to 'Baby Shark' instead of the US national anthem. Whether you saw this as a harmless prank or a sinister attempt to influence mid-term elections with carefully targeted content will depend on your political viewpoint. But the careful manipulation of opinions or tricking users into sharing dangerous content cannot be ignored.

Instead of making money through ransomware-style attacks, politically motivated hackers can spread hate designed to cause polarisation and division on a level capable of destabilizing an entire country. In much the same way phishing attacks attempt to play on your emotions to trick you into clicking on an infected link or downloading an attachment, so-called hacktivists will use bots designed to spark outrage and arguments online that spill into the physical world too.

Never trust, always verify is the new cybersecurity mantra

Traditionally, IT departments would ensure that every laptop and smartphone was secured and ideally encrypted. Cybersecurity would trust everything inside the corporate network and distrust anything outside the organization. But as hybrid working gathers momentum, this approach is no longer fit for purpose.

Despite attempts at educating the workforce, phishing emails continue to fool users into handing over their information or downloading malicious attachments such as keyloggers. Additionally, with most businesses now in the cloud, zero-trust models are predictably rising in popularity when protecting company data and providing secure network communication. This means that from a security standpoint, no device, user, application, or system will be trusted by default, regardless of location.

Cloud infrastructure and zero trust approach to security are seen as the perfect combination to improve secure access for every user and device, regardless of location. We can also expect a more seamless user experience for hybrid workers. But this is only scratching the surface of the opportunities ahead.

Clive Humby famously said data was the new oil way back in 2006, but it's now routinely shared between vendors, customers, suppliers, business units, support partners, and remote-working employees. Zero trust's primary responsibility is to protect this strategic asset from falling into the wrong hands. Ultimately, we can finally retire the phrase, trust first, verify later and replace it with the new mantra of never trust, always verify.

The rapid adoption of emerging technologies

As the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning grows, we will rapidly see the emergence of more advanced cybersecurity solutions that can identify and respond to threats in real-time. These technologies can help organizations detect and prevent attacks. Many hope these technologies will provide faster and more accurate responses to potential threats as the threat landscape evolves.

The emergence of quantum computers also means that traditional forms of encryption are becoming increasingly vulnerable. As a result, researchers are developing new forms of quantum-resistant security that can protect against these advanced computing systems. These innovations will be critical for ensuring the security of sensitive data and techniques in the coming years.

Businesses are also beginning to see blockchain technology as much more than crypto and projects built on future promises. By contrast, blockchain is expected to shine in the creation of new and innovative solutions for cybersecurity. For example, blockchain-based authentication systems can provide more secure ways of verifying user identities, and blockchain-based data storage can help protect against data breaches.

Cybersecurity regulation and compliance

As the threat landscape continues to expand, governments and regulatory bodies are taking steps to ensure that organizations take appropriate measures to protect against cyber attacks. In 2023, we can expect an increased focus on cybersecurity regulation and compliance, with new requirements and guidelines introduced to help organizations safeguard their systems and data.

As more and more devices are connected to the internet, the security of the IoT has become a significant concern. As a result, we can also expect new technologies and solutions that help protect IoT devices from being hacked or compromised. This will be particularly important for industries like healthcare, where the security of connected medical devices is crucial.

Once again, the threat landscape will continue to deliver a few surprises in 2023, and many businesses will leverage emerging technologies and innovative solutions in a proactive move to protect themselves against new cyber threats. As a result, it's safe to predict that these trends and developments will play a crucial role in improving cybersecurity in a hybrid world.

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