2021 is only a month away, and given the turbulent landscape we had in 2020, we can’t help but wonder what the cybersecurity conditions will look like for companies and enterprises in the upcoming year.
Year after year, the cybersecurity industry faces new challenges and obstacles, and 2021 will be no different. 2020 proved to be one of the most challenging years, cybersecurity-wise, especially for those companies whose employees suddenly had to switch to remote working.
But what do these changes mean for SOAR? What will 2021 hold for Security Orchestration, Automation and Response? Read the remainder of this blog post to find out more about the cybersecurity trends in 2021 and the role of SOAR in the upcoming year.
The state of SOAR in 2021: 5 cybersecurity predictions
1. Remote working will continue to be a vulnerability
The COVID-19-prompted remote working shift placed itself as mandatory for many companies, and that only meant more problems for companies.
This unprecedented situation took its toll on security professionals, leaving them with plenty of vulnerable endpoints. The sudden shift to remote working, which forced employees to leave their workplace and operate remotely, left companies with the challenging task of protecting every IoT device which was not connected to company LAN networks.
It’s one thing to secure the premises of a workplace, it’s another thing to secure the networks of remote workers. And as remote workers keep logging in from different locations, the number of alerts is expected to keep on growing in 2021, meaning that analysts will desperately need technologies to boost their SecOps productivity. This results in the expected increase in demand for SOAR to help remote workers maintain their safety.
2. The growing need for automation to eliminate repetitive tasks
The damage inflicted by cyber attacks is predicted to rise to $6 trillion in 2021, compared to $3 trillion in 2015, according to Cyber Security Ventures. Plus, with the rise of cyber threats prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic combined with the shortage of skilled security professionals, the necessity for implementing security automation in SecOps is almost certain to grow in 2021.
Plus, the fact that in 2020 over $2.2 billion has been channeled by tech companies in building automated workflow solutions tells us that more and more companies are mature enough to embrace the benefits of automation.
With cyber attacks expected to become more numerous and more complex in 2021, analysts will be rushing to scan every email and suspicious activity, browsing for potential phishing attacks or other types of malicious attacks. Naturally, these manual scans are repetitive and tedious and are one of the main causes of alert fatigue among security analysts.
This gives us all the more reasons to believe that AI-enhanced machine learning automation is going to be all the fuzz in 2021.
3. Phishing and ransomware will continue to be pervasive
Taking into consideration the fact that many employees operate on home Wi-FI, insecure passwords, and multiple poorly protected endpoints, phishing attacks, and ransomware attacks are predicted to escalate in 2021, causing potentially more devastating ramifications.
Cyber criminals are going to try to make the most out of the fact that most employees are still working remotely, exploiting the advantage of newly created vulnerabilities. Thus, the chances of breaching sensitive data will be higher in 2021, allowing hackers to take extortion and ransom leverage to a whole new level.
And given that many security analysts struggle with poor visibility across all endpoints, SOAR’s boost in visibility is definitely going to come in handy in 2021.
4. Endpoint management will be crucial
Endpoints are particularly at risk, as a result of the spike of remote workers. Managing endpoints is going to be of the essence in 2021, as endpoints are usually entry points for cyber criminals to corporate networks.
Cyber attackers are aware of the fact that remote workers need access to corporate assets, and due to their remote working position, they are more likely to open up more vulnerabilities, which is why an endpoint-management solution is going to be practically mandatory.
In this scenario, SOAR is extremely helpful at boosting EDR (Endpoint Detection and Response), as it gives SOCs the extra protection they need by providing more visibility across all endpoints, thus aiding towards a stronger resistance against endpoint breaches.
5. Distributed cloud on the rise
As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are witnessing a drastic migration to cloud computing. And, given that Gartner dubbed distributed cloud as the future of cloud, we ought to take their word for it.
The expansion of cloud computing across most organizations is a present-day reality, and this has urged SOC teams to strengthen their cloud-delivered security. Apart from forging strict remote access policies, SOC teams will need to assess the shift to cloud data centers backed with SaaS applications with extreme caution.
As organizations prepare to establish security across all communications that don’t rely on LAN networks, they will need the reinforcement of SaaS solutions to strengthen their cloud posture.
The benefits of SOAR in overcoming the obstacles of 2021
Many of the obstacles that are awaiting the cyber world in 2021 can be tackled with SOAR. The necessity of taking threat intelligence and SecOps efficiency to new heights requires a sophisticated solution capable of implementing AI, automation, and machine learning.
If utilized properly, SOAR can be the answer to all our upcoming challenges in 2021:
Safer remote working: SOAR allows SOC teams to enhance their threat hunting by allowing them to have more time to focus on actual threats while handling all low-risk threats autonomously.
Intercept phishing and ransomware attacks: SOAR scans emails, suspicious behavior, and other malicious activity to intercept phishing and ransomware attacks in the making, allowing analysts to have the time to launch a proper preemptive strike.
Fewer false positives: SOAR uses its threat intelligence and machine learning capabilities to recognize false positives and deal with them without escalating false attacks into incidents, thus saving precious time.
Automated repetitive tasks: SOAR automates repetitive tasks and documents all potentially malicious activity without the need for human interaction.
Faster incident response time: By utilizing orchestration and implementing automation in SecOps, Cloud SOAR improves the incident response time of your SOC.
Improved endpoint detection: SOAR makes up for the lack of visibility across different endpoints and allows better protection for operating devices used by remote workers.
Furthermore, probably the best thing about SOAR is that the technology blends into every environment it is deployed without disrupting the conventional workflow processes. Meaning that your organization will preserve its natural way of functioning, only with much more efficiency, thanks to SOAR.
In conclusion, the cybersecurity predictions for 2021 we made are based on our own proprietary expertise combined with credible research. And while we can’t anticipate these with exact accuracy, as they can be affected by new events and conditions, we strongly believe that every organization is going to benefit from investing in SOAR technology.
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