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It is projected that, by the end of 2020, damages incurred by global ransomware events will exceed $19 billion making it the biggest cybersecurity concern going into the new year.

December 16, 2020

Top 5 Cyber Risk Trends and Predictions to Watch For in 2021

The past year has been extremely challenging and unprecedented in many ways for most organizations who were forced to change their approach to business in the wake of COVID-19. Companies pivoted to operating remotely during the global pandemic, while existing cyber threats continued to evolve and even thrive in these newly created work-from-home (WFH) environments. With 2021 on the horizon, here are five trends and predictions to watch for in 2021.

1. Ransomware will continue to be the top cyber threat and financial concern in 2021

It is projected that, by the end of 2020, damages incurred by global ransomware events will exceed $19 billion making it the biggest cybersecurity concern going into the new year. On top of this staggering figure, the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) advised in October 2020 that organizations that “facilitate ransomware payments to cyber actors” may risk violating OFAC regulations and could be subject to fines.   

2. The WFH environment will continue to see an acceleration in attacks on organizations’ Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and Remote Desktop (RDPs)

Most organizations will continue to struggle with managing their remote workforce securely. Companies will need to prevent cyber threat actors from infiltrating enterprise networks through malicious attacks on remote servers, such as RDP and VPNs, where malware and botnets help facilitate the spread of ransomware payment demands.

3. Securing the Cloud

Enterprise cloud adoption will continue to make traction in 2021 as WFH efforts will likely remain in effect for at least the first half of the year. With organizations making this leap to the Cloud, it is critical for enterprises to understand how security teams address potential cyber risk associated with use of cloud service providers as an extension of their business operations.

4. Third-party cyber risk management will be a key initiative for CEOs, boards and investors

The increase in regulatory scrutiny and uptick of the number of enterprises experiencing breach events through third-party supply chain business partners has garnered increased visibility among board-level executives and has been identified as a key cyber risk. Monitoring cyber best practice on how security teams are managing and mitigating cyber risk exposure of third parties will be key for enterprises in 2021.

5. Measuring cybersecurity culture through behavioral analytics

Many organizations often claim they invest heavily in building and fostering a strong cybersecurity culture, but how is it truly measured for effectiveness? Analyzing behavior to identify and inform how employee resources are adhering to best practices and cyber polices will be critical to understanding the strength of a company’s cybersecurity culture in 2021.


Learn about the ISS Cyber Risk Score and how it can help you prevent cybersecurity risks: https://iss-cyber.com/

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