Top 10 Cyber security predictions for 2020

Another year has come and gone and with it, another decade comes to pass. As we enter a new year, we asked our vendors to provide their predictions for the new year and what they think has been the biggest change over the previous 10 years. Here is what they have said.

Top 10 predictions

#1 – Detection and response technologies will become more mainstream

According to ExtraHop, Detection and Response technologies will become a must-have capability for every IT organisation just like antivirus software and firewalls; these tools will employ AI to identify malicious behaviour.

#2 – Increase in Shadow IT
Entrust Datacard

A growing trend that Entrust Datacard see for 2020 is that of Shadow IT. This refers to internet-connected devices (or worse, entire IoT networks) introduced into an organisation’s network without IT’s knowledge.

#3 – More than a numbers game – Closing the Cybersecurity Skills Gap
FireMon, Ofer Elzam, VP and GM, FireMon Cloud & Automation Solutions

The cybersecurity skills gap is only getting bigger. FireMon’s 2019 State of Hybrid Cloud Security survey reported that 60% of respondents said their organisation’s deployment of business services in the cloud outpaces their ability to adequately secure them in a timely manner. Recruiting more people isn’t going to solve it. Automation can help you catch up and rethink the skills you need.

The goal is to save time every day by reducing the number of repetitive, manual tasks so your security team can focus on dealing with the more complex issues for which they were initially hired. The real solution is taking work off people’s desks, and the only way to do that is through automation.

#4 – Embedded video in connected devices will take security threats to another level
Infoblox, Malcolm Murphy, Director, EMEA

Research from IHS Markit predicts there will be as many as 30.7 billion IoT devices in use in 2020, which is expected to more than double to 75 billion by 2025 – this explosion of smart devices on the network only widens attack surfaces. I strongly suspect that video cameras in IoT connected devices, such as video doorbells and embedded cameras in smart speakers, will be the next big threat to the network due to the richer information sets they hold.

#5 – CSOs are playing a rigged game
Infoblox, Malcolm Murphy, Director, EMEA

Many CSOs will lie awake at night worrying about their organisation’s security. The fact is, it’s unlikely to be a question of ‘if’, but a question of ‘how’. While CSOs are fighting a constant battle against the breach, it’s almost as though they’re playing a game that is rigged against them. According to IBM’s 2019 Cost of a Data Breach Report, data breaches cost organisations a staggering $3.92m (£3.04m) on average. I expect that, as we move into 2020, more business leaders will come to recognise that earlier involvement of cyber security experts can help avoid a major data breach, which could derail plans, cripple production operations, or worse, cause a total loss of trust in the brand.

#6 – DeepFake techniques will improve and may spur new waves of cybercrime

DeepFake audio phone calls have already been used in scams, tricking organisations into transferring funds to attacker-controlled accounts. Cybercriminals got away with $243,000 by impersonating a Germany energy company’s CEO. The DeepVoice scam persuaded the CEO of the U.K. branch to wire the funds to a Hungarian supplier, within the hour.

These incidents show how artificial creation of video and audio content using machine learning will likely result in more social engineering scams by fraudsters.

The 2020 United States presidential elections, an event of extreme importance, may also give rise to fake news and scams. Allegations of interference from outside states generated intense controversy in the last presidential election, and security and media outlets are likely to spot more deepfakes and fake news in 2020.

#7 – Increased adoption of edge computing
Ixia. Recep Ozdag, VP of Visibility Product Management

Increased adoption of edge computing as deployment of smaller footprint but high-density racks ship to more sites, in order to manage OT, operations and security right where the data is. Drivers will be:

    1. Utilities – government mandate to update and secure highly distributed assets and services.
    2. Enterprises and SP rolling out SD WAN architectures.
    3. 5G roll-out – by nature requires lots of smaller mobile edge sites closer to the action.
    4. IoT (particularly industrial IoT) momentum and resulting demands.
#8 – Need for Qualified Web Authentication Certificates (QWACs)
Entrust Datacard

This is the result of a focus by the EU to create a high value certificate EV certificate with an EU authorisation special identifier.

QWACs are essentially EV certificates with additional requirements that form a higher level of authentication. The need for QWACs stems from the PSD2 open banking initiative that will impact all financial transactions in the EU.

#9 – Fight against government censorship (fight for privacy) will increase

Backlash from legislation to bolster censorship or weaken encryption tools and services will continue throughout 2020 as privacy advocates and organisations fight against it. The Australian government recently faced backlash from large tech companies after proposing legislation enabling law enforcement to decrypt specific communications and provide “voluntary” help by sharing technical details regarding new technologies and services being developed.

As such, more privacy and encryption-oriented tools and services are likely be adopted by both average users and cyber criminals.

#10 – Cloud-based threat vectors

With cloud adoption continuing to increase, companies will likely see more attacks stemming from cloud-based threat vectors revolving around vulnerabilities and misconfigurations that quickly spread across private, public, or hybrid infrastructures.

The adoption of IaaS infrastructures coupled with multitenancy of cloud environments will place even more strain on data isolation and data privacy if attackers compromise those infrastructures. The proliferation and diversification of cloud technologies meant to boost productivity, efficiency, and scalability are likely to further expand an already sizeable attack surface.

Insights from the last decade

Ixia (Recep Ozdag, VP of Visibility Product Management)

For the last decade, I have seen Cloud and Security as the main drivers:

  • SDN, NFV
  • Rise in ransomware
  • Endpoint protection roles shifting from software antivirus towards NGFW, IPS and home boxes
  • Blockchain and cryptocurrency
  • Identity and credentials theft as a rising attack vector


Over the past decade, we’ve seen cybersecurity spending reach record levels, yet the number of data breach incidents and records breached continue to rise. In response, we’ve seen a huge shift from prevention and protection technologies to detection and response. The industry recognises that they cannot rely on a hard perimeter to keep attackers at bay. Instead, they also need the ability to spot attackers that have made it past their defences and are operating inside the environment.

Entrust Datacard

The biggest item over the last decade would be the fallout from Google and Mozilla distrusting the certificates issued by Symantec in 2017 which ultimately led to Symantec selling its SSL business to Digicert.

Depending on who you listen to, the number of certificates found to have been mis-issued was anything from 127 to 30,000!

With Netcraft estimating that approximately one third of all certificates globally were issued by either Symantec or a brand that Symantec owned, the sheer scale of the distrust program meant that a phased approach had to be adopted in order to give website operators the opportunity to replace all their certificates.


The past decade has seen massive growth in our industry and with our increased dependency on technology, this is only. What will 2020 hold? Hopefully our blog has provided some insight.

Find out more on our vendors below.