4. Government-sponsored attacks will increase as new players enter.
Expect more governments to enter the cyber-warfare arena. In the wake of several publicized cyber-warfare events, there are a number of contributing factors that will drive more countries toward these strategies and tactics. While the effort to become another nuclear superpower may be insurmountable, almost any country can draft the talent and resources to craft cyber-weapons. Countries and individual cybercriminals all have access to the blueprints for previous state-sponsored attacks like Stuxnet, Flame and Shamoon.
Expect hacktivists to move to the next level as simplistic opportunities dwindle.
Driven by highly publicized hacktivist events in recent years, organizations have deployed increasingly better detection and prevention policies, solutions and strategies. Hacktivists will move to the next level by increasing their sophistication.
Malicious emails are making a comeback.
Timed and targeted spear-phishing email attacks, along with an increase in malicious email attachments, are providing new opportunities for cybercrime. Malicious email will make a comeback. Domain generation algorithms will also bypass current security to increase the effectiveness of targeted attacks.
Cybercriminals will follow the crowds to legitimate content management systems and web platforms.
Vulnerabilities in Wordpress have frequently been exploited with mass compromises. As other content management systems (CMS) and service platforms increase in popularity, the bad guys will routinely test the integrity of these systems. Attacks will continue to exploit legitimate web platforms, requiring CMS administrators to pay greater attention to updates, patches, and other security measures. Cybercriminals compromise these platforms to host their malware, infect users and invade organizations to steal data.
"The past year illustrated how quickly the threat landscape continues to evolve, with attacks and exploits redefining the concepts of crime, business espionage and warfare. The risk to organizations continues to be amplified by the frailty of human curiosity. It's now expanding across diverse mobile platforms, evolving content management systems and an ever-increasing population of online users.