Businesses must review how they address cybersecurity with the expanding number and types of cybersecurity threat as the world steadily emerges from crisis lockdown, with the remote working model here to stay.
The cybersecurity industry has used a defense-in-depth strategy for decades, allowing enterprises to declare the battleground against threat actors at their edge firewall.
The reliance on network isolation has gradually decreased with organizations migrating critical services such as email, intellectual property and helpdesks from behind their firewall into regions serviced by software-as-a-service providers.
Cloud computing has become a key facilitator of the remote working trend. Because of the pandemic, businesses became entirely remote overnight, but this rendered traditional defense mechanisms ineffectual — and attackers took notice, as many enterprises have discovered the hard way. Organizations must undergo a fundamental rethink to ensure that they are set up to continuously evolve and adapt in response to the rapidly evolving nature of cybersecurity threat.
Cybersecurity threat landscape
Recent data indicate the magnitude of the cybersecurity challenges faced by enterprises – malware attacks climbed by 358 percent in 2020, and ransomware by 435 percent, with the average cost of recovery from a ransomware attack more than doubling in the last one year, reaching nearly US$2 million in 2021.
Security flaws were exposed as organizations adapted to new ways of working. Even routine security issues proved harder to fix for organizations, as systems that could previously be accessed manually within an office were no longer there. Moreover, threat actors are also continuing to enhance their skillset with new strategies and techniques, demonstrating that they will go to any length to improve their abilities.
Traditional strategies do not apply anymore in this cyber “new normal.” To keep up with this fast-moving target, businesses need to adopt a new, more agile, and dynamic approach, which involves constantly modifying and updating the knowledge and skills of their cyber teams.
Organizations must rethink their approach towards training for IT skills.
Traditional security training has outlived its utility. Because the certification process is so slow, it is frequently obsolete and unreliable by the time permissions are granted. As a result, by the time professionals complete a course, some qualifications will be worthless.
Furthermore, certain out-dated processes are geared to encourage the acquisition of a credential rather than the mastery of a skill. So, many security resources are qualified but still do not have the skills to execute defensive tasks.
Take a look at how threat actors enhance their skill – they do so by carrying out attacks, getting better with each one. Organizations that wish to stay ahead of the competition must imitate their adversary. Cybersecurity specialists must think like ethical hackers, and all organizations should have internal ethical hacking teams that are ready for any security event. They should practise on specially designed materials that mimic real-world scenarios, simulating the advantages that attackers obtain from this strategy. Many technology companies do this already, but at this point, all should adopt this strategy.
Globally, a number of organizations lack expertise dealing with hacking efforts within teams due to a lack of hands-on training. As a result, organizations are increasingly paying “attackers” to recreate events, with staff subsequently focusing on addressing IT system flaws. While helpful, this does not empower professionals to identify and address issues on their own.
There is an alternative – professionals can participate in gamified training that immerses them in threat actor strategies, preparing them for real-world scenarios. This type of training develops the mindset required to safeguard enterprise infrastructure against threats, while also engaging professionals in an interactive way.
Companies can enhance their ability to deal with security threats in a proactive way by choosing interactive, hands-on training over outdated, theory-based alternatives. Security and IT experts become the company’s in-house pen-testers, continually reviewing and penetrating security environments to demonstrate their skill and strengthen the organization’s defense.
This emerging trend is helping businesses in their fight against cyber-attacks. Along with basic security hygiene, allowing employees to respond to security threats in a practical and agile manner can help businesses maintain control over their infrastructure.