BeyondTrust has announced its predictions for the primary cybersecurity threats slated to affect organisations globally in 2024. The analysis was prepared by cybersecurity experts Morey J. Haber, Chief Security Officer; Christopher Hills, Chief Security Strategist; and James Maude, the Director of Research at BeyondTrust.
Exploring the continued evolution of the AI threat, the team detailed the trajectory of this growing issue in three stages. The first stage predicts human threat actors incorporating AI capabilities to enhance their reach and technical abilities. Weak AI specializing in narrow tasks will be increasingly used by these threat actors to discover vulnerabilities and assist in evading detection. The second stage underscores the emergence of new AI threat vectors. Leveraging Generative AI, this stage would include the generation of fake content to blur the line between reality and deception. Lastly, the third phase highlights a paradoxical situation where the adoption of AI assistants could lead to increased security vulnerabilities in software development due to potential errors and misconfigurations present in AI-generated code.
BeyondTrust's second prediction centres around the demise of dedicated applications. As Generative AI continues to advance, the experts believe it could replace dedicated applications with voice commands, prompting a decline in complex user interfaces in favour of results-driven, function-specific applications.
The forecast further anticipates the phasing out of POTS and dedicated VOIP, to be replaced with Unified Communication Services (UCS). However, the experts caution that vulnerabilities and potential hacks may compromise this once-secure communication medium. They also predict the rise of subscription-based models, as more products and services transition to this model facilitated by electronic payments. Yet, they anticipate this shift to potentially pose data security risks through subscription gaps.
Focusing on hardware advancements, the team anticipates a likely rise in security challenges linked to the proliferation of USB-C connectors. The standardisation of this single connection type is predicted to simplify the task for threat actors, further exacerbating risks. Another shift identified by BeyondTrust is in cyber insurance - expected to become more standardised across providers, thereby enhancing risk management and limiting liability for businesses.
Looking ahead at long-term cybersecurity trends, BeyondTrust also released a list of its predictions for the next five years. These include a decline in malware as identity compromise and native tools replace software exploits, and a potential uptick in nation-state attacks targeting AI supply chains. The predictions also discussed the comeback of vintage tech, the evolution of identity verification services, the growing focus on AI governance and compliance, as well as the phasing out of physical remote controls.
Morey Haber, Chief Security Officer at BeyondTrust, said: "Looking ahead helps us anticipate where cyber threat actors will undoubtedly head, and preparing for what's ahead makes all the difference in risk management effectiveness. At BeyondTrust, we plan to provide the best security solutions to address current and future attack vectors, which our customers and partners expect."