Over the years, technology has changed our world and integrated into our daily lives. Technology has made our lives easier, faster, better, and more fun. It is almost impossible to meet anyone that hasn’t benefited from technology and the increasingly fast internet. The internet is truly magnificent and has changed how we communicate, work, learn and much more. It’s tough to imagine life without the internet and technology – you would be reading this article on paper, and our research would have to be conducted in libraries. Additionally, the internet paved the way for new opportunities and made it easier for a new business to enter almost any industry.
Unfortunately, the internet’s great benefits are followed by increasing cyber risks/cyber threats. As recorded, 2021 was a chaotic year full of cyber-attacks on various companies, the government and even personal accounts. Cyber threats have constantly been growing significantly since working from home. On the positive side, since the increase of cyber-attacks, cyber security has developed further. More companies are investing in cyber security software’s and purchasing cyber insurance.
Furthermore, experts say nothing in tech is certain, and there are already predictions for 2022 cyber threats. A cyber-attack could happen at any time; it is crucial to be aware of future cyber threats and invest in cyber insurance. This article will cover the top predicted cyber threats of 2022 and how cyber insurance is the perfect safety net. It is the year to protect data and lower the chance of cybercrimes.
What is Cyber Insurance?
Cyber Insurance is a policy that should be made mandatory when starting a business. It is a crucial insurance to deal with cyber risk and attacks. Insurance companies have created cyber insurance to protect your business against material and immaterial cyber risks.
The insurance provides the policyholder with the first-party response on loss and a third party response to cover liabilities occurring with the cyber-attack. Additionally, the coverage reimburses companies for expenses related to a data breach, including legal costs.
Additionally, it is essential to understand that cyber insurance will not prevent cyber-attacks but help the company deal with them and recover.
Cyber Threats in 2022
Work From Home Invites Cyber Threats
Work from home in recent years has become a new trend in working lifestyle. It is a trend that is either loved or looked down on in companies. However, the trend has almost become a norm and will continue in 2022. Although, the new working style comes with cyber risks of its own. Employees using their own devices and unsecured WIFI to work makes it easier for hackers to breach data or spread an unwanted virus through the company portal. Unsecure devices can cause serious cyber security issues for companies and employees.
For example, research was conducted by HP’s Wolf Security division. It surveyed over 8,400 office workers that moved from working from the office to working from home due to the pandemic. Over 80% of respondents say they dealt with ransomware, firmware attacks, exploitation, and data breach increases. These threats increase during working from home can be avoided with the right cyber security software and knowledge provided to each employee.
Additionally, a business should be ready to face and move on from cyber-attacks with cyber insurance. The insurance will cover the business with the right actions needed to recover. Recovering from a cyber-attack can be costly to the company and adds to the stress. A cyber insurance policy will provide the right fund to repair damaged devices, recover data, and inform clients about the breach. With cyber insurance, businesses know they can recover from work from home cyber threats.
The Rise in Ransomware Attacks
Ransomware involves infecting devices with a virus that locks files and threatens to destroy them unless the company pays a ransom. Research by PwC explains that 61% of technology executives expect an increase in ransomware in 2022. A ransomware attack can be through an email, link or hacking. The cyber-attack can ruin a business with financial loss and reputation damage. No one wants to work with a company that has had all its data stolen. So organisations pay the ransom to avoid business shut down, losing their data, and they may have no other choice.
For example, Acer, a tech business, was the victim of a ransomware attack in March 2021. The hackers demanded US$50 million from the famous computer company. The team behind the attack informed Acer they had successfully breached their data and even proofed it. However, it is uncertain if Acer paid the amount or how authorities dealt with it. Although, 37% of global organisations said they were the victim of some form of a ransomware attack in 2021.
The data above shows that ransomware attacks are very common and growing, hence why the purchase of cyber insurance has also increased. Depending on the cyber insurance policy- the insurance will provide the cost of ransom or a high portion of it. In addition, cyber insurance will provide repair costs and inform all customers(third-party) whose information has been breached. Additionally, it is crucial to notify insurers when the business becomes a ransomware attack victim.
Social Engineering Attacks (Phishing)
Phishing is a social engineering attack used to steal user data, including login and credit card numbers. Phishing has always been a cyber threat that has infected many devices through emails and links. It occurs when an attacker disguises themselves as a trustworthy sender. Phishing attackers will develop and use different technology styles to make emails or social media accounts more believable in 2022. Phishing attacks will move to SMS’s on mobiles and more platforms to gain better results for attackers. It is very simple to be a victim of a phishing attack, even as an IT expert. A simple click of a link can spread many viruses.
For example, Google has registered 2,145,013 phishing sites as of Jan 17, 2021. An increase of 27% from 2020 with 1,690,000 on Jan 19, 2020. Unfortunately, the increase from 2021-2022 could be even more. Additionally, RiskIQ estimates that businesses worldwide lose USD 17,700 every minute due to phishing attacks.
Cyber insurance is the best way a business can deal with a cyber-attack when they or their employees have become victims of social engineering attacks. The insurance will provide the correct action the company should take. The insurance will cover restoring the personal identities of affected customers and recovering compromised data. Cyber insurance policyholders will get a first-person response if they even suspect they have been affected by phishing.
Use Of Artificial intelligence (AI)
Artificial intelligence or AI are software’s used by computers to impersonate aspects of human intelligence. AI is a factor in technology that surprises everyone with its development and use. We hope experts use AI for making life easier and efficient, but this is not always the case. The development of AI has opened new doors for cybercriminals in 2022. In particular, improvements in deep fake technologies have led to effective deception. Attackers are programming AI software to hack through cyber security and impersonate brands/people. Therefore, attackers can use AI to breach data, crack through security, and gain trust from victims.
Deepfakes are a huge AI threat. They are compelling and successfully trick people into believing that a person did or said something that never happened. For example, in March 2019, a deepfake attack began when a CEO of a U.K. energy firm got a convincing call from his boss, the head of the firm’s German parent company. The U.K based CEO heard his boss’s voice, which had exactly the right tone and a subtle German accent. The German head asked him to transfer $243,000, supposedly into the account of a Hungarian supplier. Unfortunately, The UK CEO did as he was asked and later found out that an attacker had tricked him.
AI attacks are still considered a new style of cyber threats in 2022. However, cyber insurance will still cover a business for a victims loss. The coverage will include financial loss, data recovery, and third-party communications. The insurance providers may also link the company with experts that will provide the best advice and actions. Cyber insurance will help companies no matter what cybercrime they are victims of.
Why Does Every Business Need Cyber Insurance In 2022?
Well, we hope these cyber threats predictions have made you realise how dangerous working online or using technology will be in 2022. These threats don’t mean we need to stop using the internet or tech; that would be impossible. However, one should be ready with cyber insurance. As it can help a business recover from the cyber-attack quickly.
No matter how small or big your business or the industry- every professional or company should buy cyber insurance as soon as possible. Many SMEs believe they are less likely to cyber-attacks, but in fact, SMEs are easier to attack.
In summary, a cyber-attack can occur at any time and, unfortunately, will be expected this year. Hence, cyber insurance will be the safety net of 2022 for any business that uses any technology (Everyone).