Major Cybersecurity Threats in 2018
Capital Markets CIO Outlook | Thursday, June 21, 2018
As hackers are constantly improving their techniques to break through cyber defences, cyber security
holds paramount importance. Some significant threats for this year include:
• Data Breaches—Recent cyberattacks
show how cyber criminals are increasingly targeting larger agencies holding sensitive information. Data brokers are expected to be popular targets in2018.
• Hacking Elections—Cyberattacks on the voting process have several potential targets, ranging from voter rolls and voting machines to the software used in collating and auditing results.
• Ransomware on Cloud—Ransomware breaches security to encrypt and lock down data, and refuse to the digital key to unlock it until the ransom is paid. The payment is often demanded in cryptocurrencies
that are almost impossible to trace. In 2018, hackers are expected to target the cloud computing businesses housing data for several companies. While the biggest cloud operators like Amazon, Google and IBM, have tough defences on the account of their cybersecurity teams, smaller companies might not be as fortunate.
• AI Weaponization—Cybersecurity is increasingly using AI technologies like machine learning
and neutral networks to spot cyberattacks, and hackers might have turned the same technologies to their advantage. Machine learning models craft convincing fake messages quickly and efficiently, which provides a major advantage to hackers. More phishing attacks and malware that successfully fool “sandboxes” can be expected this year.
• Cyber-physical attacks—Hacks targeting critical infrastructure such as electrical grids and transportation system are expected to take place in 2018—these may cause immediate disruption, or involve ransomware that hijacks vital systems to demand ransom. Both researchers and hackers are expected to uncover weak spots in defences of older systems, which could leave them vulnerable.
• Cryptocurrency Hacking—Several hackers have been targeting holders of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. What is alarming about the scenario, however, is that hackers successfully breach the defences of computer networks. Cryptocurrency mining requires enormous computing capacity in solving complex mathematical problems—millions of computers are compromised in this process.