Security, automation remain key trends for Asia Pacific in 2020

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There will be five key technology trends for the Asia Pacific (APAC) region in 2020 centered around 5G communications technology, according to network security firm Palo Alto Networks.

Palo Alto Networks field chief security officer Kevin Leary

The US-based company said these trends include: 4G remaining a priority for APAC; Internet-of-Things (IoT) increasing attack surface for organizations;  appearance of legislation for data privacy; cloud computing; and a need for upskilling initiatives as 5G continues to emerge.

On security, the company said one of the glaring issues pre-existing with 4G are risks, which when not addressed before shifting to 5G, will exploit mobile ISPs first and continue to attack other vulnerabilities found in unsecured IoT systems. 

The company also said in a higher inter-connected world with an increasing surface area for touchpoints to exists, 5G will affect industries and organizations that leverage on AI and machine learning as well.

Kevin O’ Leary, field chief security officer at Palo Alto Networks, said in line with these trends, organizations must be able to ditch legacy security solutions that are unable to detect the newer emerging threats.

“Within a mesh network, obviously there are all those risks because it increases the attack surface, and with 5G, the velocity and size of the attack is so much greater as well. But like everything, any zero-day or new attack, we need to respond quickly,” O’ Leary said.

Although automation is bringing efficiency to business processes, armed with exponentially higher speeds, threats like swarm network technology and programs like Autosploit will be able to hit with much more force, the technology firm also noted.

Since threat programs will leverage on being automated in seeking vulnerabilities to attack, there should be security measures like detection programs that are real-time. If organizations fail to recognize this, 4G will be the gateway for malicious attackers to reach 5G networks, the tech firm said.

When it comes to cybersecurity workforce demands, according to the (ISC)2 2018 Cybersecurity Workforce Study, in the APAC region alone the cybersecurity talent shortage is at 2.14 million.

With the current mindset of companies looking for the “elusive unicorn” instead of exploring alternative sources of talent, as well as increasing recognition for EQ over IQ, the supply will steadily drop.

Data privacy concerns stem from the lack of awareness and visibility of the data collection process. While putting up localized data centers has its perks, it doesn’t guarantee data security. For this specific need, businesses who are potentially vulnerable to cyberthreats that don’t recognize national borders, must adapt using a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy.

In turn, this strategy must be managed effectively through regular evaluation and access control of the data collected. The same goes for cloud security with the headlining challenge being the adoption phase.

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