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A Look Ahead to 2017: Cybersecurity

McAfee Labs takes an in-depth look into the upcoming year

Internet security firm McAfee Labs recently took a deep dive into the upcoming year, publishing a detailed series of cybersecurity predictions and insight for 2017.

In its [link url=”” title=”2017 Threats Predictions Report”], McAfee Labs delved into, among other topics, cloud security and the security of the Internet of Things (IoT).

All told, the security giant identified six “hard to solve” challenges for the cybersecurity industry to overcome in 2017:

  1. Reduce asymmetry of information.
  2. Make cyber attacks more expensive (or less profitable).
  3. Improve visibility of security operations.
  4. Identify exploitation of legitimate tools and credentials.
  5. Protect decentralized data (over extended systems).
  6. Protect without agents present (e.g. on many IoT devices).

More than a dozen hard predictions

Along with the “hard to solve” challenges, McAfee Labs also spelled out 14 specific cybersecurity predictions for the new year. The list of 2017 threat predictions is diverse wide-ranging.

  1. Ransomware attacks will become both less common and less effective as the year progresses.
  2. Issues with Windows vulnerability will continue to decline.
  3. Cyber attacks will increasingly target hardware and firmware.
  4. “Dronejackings” will become a very real problem.
  5. Cyber attacks on mobile devices will increase in sophistication and effectiveness.
  6. IoT insecurity will continue to loom and the presence of malware on IoT devices will grow.
  7. Machine learning will lead to a rise in sophistication of cyber attacks.
  8. Fake ads and fake social activity will increase and lead to a decline collective trust.
  9. The battle between legitimate ads and malware-laced ads will persist.
  10. “Hacktivists” will expose privacy issues.
  11. Law enforcement will make strides in fighting cybercrime.
  12. Threat intelligence sharing will grow.
  13. The private sector will see a rise in cyber espionage.
  14. Increased industry collaboration will strengthen overall cybersecurity.

See in-depth information about each of these predictions in the [link url=”” title=”official report”].

A look ahead

Increasing problems with [link url=”” title=”IoT security”] marred the latter part of 2016. And [link url=”” title=”hacks on well-known people and companies”] dominated headlines throughout the year. With Cisco reporting a [link url=”” title=”million-job gap”] in cybersecurity due to a skills shortage, cybersecurity problems could easily get worse before they get better.

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Matt Mills has been involved in various aspects of online media, both on the editorial side and on the technology side, for more than 16 years. He holds a Master's Degree in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, and is currently involved in multiple projects focused on innovation journalism.

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