With cybersecurity rising to prominence amidst the widening use of data, we take a close look at the top trends that are likely to dominate the category of data theft in 2023
Evolving technologies have not only helped enterprises but also armed hackers with sophisticated tools to steal data and harm individual businesses. Data theft has become a holy grail for scammers as they move from only hacking emails to stealing more sensitive information including bank accounts, social security numbers, identification documents, and so on. As we gear to step into the year 2023, here are the top trends that will redefine Data Theft activities in the coming year and beyond:
1) Targeting E-commerce segment: With e-commerce reaching all existing records of popularity, the influx of both companies and customers to maximize their profits is increasing day by day. Today, there are thousands of online marketplaces operating all across the globe with each of them having hordes of customer data. This data is primarily used for making better business decisions but such a vast amount of information makes it prone to cyberattacks. There has been an exponential rise of attacks on online marketplaces and the year 2023 will likely witness more such attacks in the e-commerce space.
2) Third-Party Exposure: Gartner research reveals that cybercriminals are increasingly using third-party services to target important firms and organizations. As third-party services are an integral part of the business ecosystem, breachers are using these stakeholders for their nefarious attempts. The cybersecurity attacks originating from suppliers, software developers, and logistics partners have consistently been on the rise as attackers impersonate these partners and steal sensitive information from unsuspecting users. These attacks are also damaging trust between stakeholders. Ponemon's 2022 study revealed that only 34% of IT executives express confidence that their third-party partner would apprise them of the data breach incidents.
3. Supply chain vulnerabilities: The importance of an efficient supply chain in ensuring business profitability cannot be ignored today. Owing to this significance, experts predict that the global supply chain will be high on the radar of hackers in 2023. The disruptions are likely to impact not only corporate sector but will also engulf public sector units in trade, commerce, national securities, etc. Further, the involvement of state actors in executing these attacks can't be ruled out either in the coming years.
4) Semiconductor shortage: This might sound unrelated at the first glance but dig deep and one can easily correlate data theft attempts with shortages of semiconductors. The global shortage of semiconductors is pushing the prices which means servers, hardware, and peripherals will cost more in future. This might also force companies to cut spending on cybersecurity measures, thereby making them an easy target for breachers to infiltrate and lock them out from their operating systems.
5) Socio-Political Hacktivism: Probably, the year 2023 will witness further ratcheting up of the tensions between prominent economies. The intelligence services of various countries will continue to remain involved in Hacktivism for achieving their geo-political objectives. Cybercriminals are also likely to take the cover fire of social and political movements to attack global corporations and steal data. For example, attackers in the past had used Copenhagen Accord, Paris Climate Change, or fighting Big Oil to trick companies and infect their systems with ransomware. Many more such attacks on the pretext of noble causes like women empowerment, child labour, and vaccination for all could be used by breachers in the coming year and beyond.
All stakeholders across business ecosystems are unanimous on the pressing need to preserve the data in most safe and secure way. Undoubtedly, this awareness will help users and companies not let their guard down and remain alert to cyberattacks which are increasingly becoming hi-tech and sophisticated. Although the complexity of the attacks are likely to intensify in 2023 and beyond, cyber experts are also coming up with novel technologies to protect systems against data leaks and hacking attempts. The most reliable method of keeping these attacks at bay is to continuously upgrade systems, deploy new-age technologies, use trusted networks, and never click on suspicious emails without verifying the sender's credentials. These simple steps are quite basic but can prove instrumental in keeping you and your organisation safe from the malicious intent of cyber criminals.
The article has been written by Kunal Bajaj, Chief Business Officer, eSec Forte