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Cybersecurity in 2022: A view from the experts

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There is no doubt that this year has been a year of disruption, change and opportunity within the cybersecurity industry. With 2022 on the horizon, find out what the experts have to say about the top trends impacting the industry now and what to look out for in the future…

Carlos Morales, VP Solutions, Neustar Security Solutions:

“Cybercrime has become a lucrative and mature market. We have witnessed the proliferation of extortion tactics and the huge disruption they can cause to both public and private interests. Meanwhile, criminal groups have openly collaborated with peers – aligning their strategies, picking targets, and agreeing on safe-havens. This sophistication, combined with a booming market, means that what were once individual criminal ‘groups’ and malicious actors are now fully-fledged criminal enterprises, providing as-a-service offerings and malware licenses to established customer bases and target markets.

“As a result, we will see stronger strains of existing well-known malware and refined attack strategies emerge, while targets become ever more ambitious. What’s (or rather, who’s) next? Public infrastructure and large, private businesses that provide vital services (like cloud providers or data centres) will likely remain at the top of the target list – with the risk of the potential knock-on effects making paying-up an enticing offer. Organisations really need to implement an ‘always on’ approach to network security to ensure fast and automated responses to attacks and they need to partner with security providers that continually evolve their defence capabilities.  These new best practices offer far, far more cost-effective in the long run and provide peace of mind for organisations.”

Jim Hietala, Vice President of Business Development and Security, The Open Group

“2021 saw the emergence of Zero Trust security architecture as the forward-looking security architecture, and as a consequence, we also saw vendors using and abusing Zero Trust in their messaging. In 2022, we expect to see Zero Trust move from concept to practical implementation, with the availability of more vendor-neutral industry standards and best practices, including reference models and architectures that will help end users to build viable, multi-vendor security architectures based on Zero Trust principles. Open standards will be key to this development.”

Stephan Jou, CTO Security Analytics, Interset at CyberRes, a Micro Focus Line of Business

“All indications are that AI technologies will be increasingly prevalent in cybersecurity. This includes everything from the increasing adoption of technologies like UEBA by enterprises, surveys that show investment in AI by SOC teams, and the adoption of ML and other AI methods by SIEM, IAM and other systems.

“However, the types of AI that will be adopted in 2022 will be focused on specific, battle-tested techniques such as statistical learning, anomaly detection, and (in a more limited capacity) NLP. Certain areas of AI research, such as large language models (like GPT-3), will not be heavily adopted in 2022 for cybersecurity. This is because there is not yet a good use case match within cybersecurity for those technologies, and also because the computationally expensive and non-transparent nature of these approaches do not lend themselves well to the SOC needs at present.”

Kai Waehner, Field CTO and Global Technology Advisor, Confluent

“Cyber threats are not new. However, our more and more connected world increases the risks. Successful ransomware attacks across the globe enforce enterprises to take action by implementing situational awareness and threat intelligence in real-time at scale to act proactively against cyberattacks.”

Fabien Rech, EMEA Vice President, McAfee Enterprise

“Our reliance on API-based services is rising, as they quickly become the foundations of most modern applications. This is only set to rise further in 2022, as global use of the internet, 5G, and connected devices continues to boom – this year alone, we saw a 57% increase in online activity.

“Often business-critical data and capabilities lie behind these APIs, and cybercriminals have been quick to take note of this and exploit the increase in API usage. However, attacks targeting APIs go undetected in many cases, as they are generally considered trusted paths and lack the same level of governance and security controls.

“It’s therefore critical that enterprises make API security a priority next year. Organisations must ensure they have visibility of all application usage across their systems, with the ability to look at consumed APIs. Adopting a Zero Trust mindset will support this. It allows enterprises to maintain control over access to the network and all its instances, including applications and APIs, and restrict them if necessary.

“Shoring up on API security is particularly crucial amidst the current supply chain crisis, as APIs are often used as an entry vector for wider supply chain attacks due to their interconnected nature. Next year, supply chains will continue to be a prime target for hackers, and so enterprises should look one step ahead and use threat intelligence solutions to predict and prevent API attacks before they take place.”

Rory Duncan, Security Go To Market Leader UK at NTT

“This year, as we’ve started to recover from the pandemic, demonstrating effective cyber-resilience has become more crucial than ever. This will continue to be a priority for organisations as we move into 2022, as the shift towards permanent hybrid working models for many enterprises will put continued pressure on their ability to detect threats. It’s essential that businesses leaders prioritise security, especially as the trusted perimeter expands to encompass remote users.

“As businesses consider their 2022 hybrid workplace strategies, they need to revisit and re-evaluate security from the ground up and assess where they may have unwittingly created gaps in their security armour. 80.7% of IT leaders have said it’s more difficult to spot IT security or business risk when employees are working remotely, so ensuring visibility by developing a multi-pronged approach to re-imagining enterprise security will be fundamental in 2022.

“The ability to respond quickly and effectively across the distributed IT environment will be paramount next year. The number of cyber-attacks in the headlines is only rising and it’s no longer a case of “if” but “when” an attack will occur. Ultimately, your business will be more exposed if it doesn’t have the right security measures and response capability in place.”

Pritesh Parekh, VP of Engineering and Chief Trust & Security Officer at Delphix

“With intense scrutiny on how businesses prepare for and respond to breaches next year, it’s clear that security and compliance concerns will be the key determinant for any interactions with third parties – whether customers, partners, or vendors. Following the pandemic, digital guides every third party interaction – potentially exposing data as soon it moves outside of the business’s digital walls. Endpoints have become beyond critical when it comes to securing data, but you can’t always control your endpoints if they exist within another organization, right? The answer is, you must, meaning that technology vendors who don’t rise to the occasion and implement the same standards as their enterprise customers will lose business, big time.”

Keith Glancey, Director of Technology Western Europe, Infoblox

“Cybercrime is getting organised. Gone are the days of lone hackers operating from back bedrooms. Cybercriminals are banding together to form businesses, using the dark web to recruit new “talent” and advertise “jobs” they’re looking to fulfil. With bigger businesses behind attacks, the stakes are significantly higher for organisations under fire. It’s not just businesses, either – we’re seeing an increasing number of nation state-led attacks from major players like Russia, China and the US. Their target? Personal data.”

“This systematic approach to cybercrime is a continuation of a broader trend towards “as-a-service” business models. Cybercrime-as-a-Service (CaaS) brings together malware developers, hackers, and other threat actors selling out or loaning their hacking tools and services to people on the dark web. Ultimately, CaaS makes these tools and services accessible to anyone who wants to launch a cyberattack, even those without the technical knowledge to do so.”

International Fraud Awareness Week – Hear from the experts

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Fraud is not a new concept – far from it. Since the dawn of time, fraudsters have looked to take advantage of circumstance and innocent people have fallen victim as a result. But, in our digital age, fraud is more prevalent than ever before. That’s why this International Fraud Awareness Week, we spoke to three experts in the field; to find out more about how organisations can protect themselves and their customers. Here’s what they had to say:

Ben Fraser, Global Head of Business Development, Insurance at Endava  

“As we enter International Fraud Awareness Week this year, it’s a startling realisation that fraud continues to plague consumers despite leaps and bounds in cybersecurity. Last year alone, scam attempts rose by 33%, resulting in £2.3bn in losses for consumers. As fraud continues to rise, the question needs to refocus not just on how we can prevent fraud, but also how consumers can take matters into their own hands.

“Part of the answer the answer may lie within embedded insurance, which allows insurers to reach consumers where they live and work: through offering solutions when they’re needed most, whether that’s while consumers are shopping online, checking their bank details, comparing cars for purchase, or looking for vets. 

“The concept of embedded insurance exists in a limited form today. There is, however, plenty of opportunity for insurers to better integrate solutions to eliminate the effort in consumers having to seek out support themselves, making it easier than ever to protect themselves from bad actors across their digital footprints. 

“As we head into International Fraud Awareness Week, hopefully we will see more of just that: better awareness of how technology can accelerate and combat the multiple threats we’ve see escalate as we all move toward a digital-first lifestyle. Making sure consumers have easy access to insurance is one – but one critical – element of that, and will go a long way in making sure consumers feel safe when heading online, flashing some cash, or hitting the road.”

Raj Samani, Chief Scientist and McAfee Enterprise fellow:

“International Fraud Awareness Week comes as a timely reminder that enterprises and individuals should all take time to shore up their cyber defences. The threat landscape is constantly evolving, and cybercriminals are expanding their tactics and target groups. As well as posing a threat to individuals across the country, fraud and scams intensify the threat for businesses. Today, many employees are accessing work files and information across both corporate and personal devices, meaning that while criminals could be targeting an individual, the end goal could be accessing sensitive enterprise information. Unfortunately, this threat has continued to increase due to the pandemic, with our research finding that 57% of UK organisations experienced increased cyber threats during COVID-19.

“To tackle rising fraud threats, businesses need to educate their workforce on best practices, such as reporting any suspicious activity, questioning whether a link is dodgy, or thinking before accepting an unknown phone call. Employees must be aware of and vigilant against threats to avoid making it too easy for criminals to cash in on both personal and company data.   

“It is also crucial that organisations deploy the necessary security protections across their enterprise. For example, they should adopt a Zero Trust mindset that can help them maintain control over access to the network and all instances within it, such as applications and data, and restrict them if necessary. By taking these measures, organisations can rest easy knowing that they have taken the correct steps to protect themselves and their workforce from cyber-led scams.”

Brett Beranek, Vice-President & General Manager, Security & Biometrics Line of Business, Nuance Communications

“Fraud Awareness Week acts as a reminder to businesses and consumers alike that cyber security solutions and fraud prevention tools are no longer optional, especially in our current climate. Indeed, new research from Nuance has found that on average victims of fraud lost over £3,300 each in the last 12 months – three times higher than in 2019.”  

“As we transition into a post-pandemic world of remote working, shopping and socialising, it has never been more important for businesses to ensure that users are provided with a more sophisticated and secure experience. Now is the time to confine PINs and passwords to the history books, so that modern technologies – such as biometrics – can be more widely deployed in order to robustly safeguard customers. 

“Biometric technologies authenticate individuals immediately based on their unique characteristics – taking away the need to remember PINs, passwords and other knowledge-based credentials prone to being exploited by scammers and providing peace of mind, as well as security, for end-users.” 

World Password Day: Security advice from McAfee, Nuance and more…

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Thursday (May 6th) marks the annual World Password Day – an awareness event designed to promote better password habits. This year, with so many of us working from home and cybersecurity stretched to the limit, safe and secure passwords are more important than ever before. With that in mind, we spoke to several experts to find out how consumers and businesses alike can ensure that their passwords stand up in today’s climate. Here’s what they had to say:

Brett Beranek, Vice-President & General Manager, Security & Biometrics Line of Business, Nuance

“World Password Day represents a reminder that PINs and passwords are an archaic tool, no longer fit for purpose. Passwords are being sold on the dark web, exploited for fraudulent activity and have even cost unfortunate individuals vast sums of money in terms of forgotten passwords to safeguard cryptocurrencies. 

“Indeed, new UK research from Nuance has found that over one in five (22%) consumers have admitted to relying on the same two or three different passwords or similar variations of them. A similar number (20%) say they receive notifications their passwords have been compromised on at least a monthly basis. This could leave those individuals at an increased risk of fraud, and it is the enterprises that must take responsibility to address this by strengthening their customers’ security with more modern solutions. 

“Given the same poll has found that on average victims of fraud lost over £3,200 each in the last 12 months – three times higher than two years ago – it is high time PINs and passwords are confined to the history books, so that technology – such as biometrics – can be more widely deployed in order to robustly safeguard customers.  Biometrics authenticates individuals immediately based on their unique characteristics – taking away the need to remember PINs, passwords and other knowledge-based credentials prone to being exploited by fraudsters and providing peace of mind, as well as security, for end-users.”

Raj Samani, Chief Scientist and McAfee Fellow:   

“When it comes to online safety, password hygiene has never been more relevant. Over the past year alone, we’ve seen a massive surge in online activity, with the pandemic leaving many Brits reliant on conducting daily activities such as shopping and banking online.  

“Passwords are of course a key part of our digital lives, enabling people to gain quick access to a variety of online platforms, accounts and devices.  However, it can be easy to take them for granted and forget the basics of password hygiene during our busy lives, particularly now as we have so many accounts to keep on top in order to get on with our day-to-day activities. 

“Passwords which include personal information, such as your name, or pet’s name, make them easier to guess. This is especially true when we share a lot of personal information online, making it easier for online criminals to make guesses about your password. You should also never share a password, even with a close relative. While this may seem harmless, sharing these details could result in critical personal information falling into the wrong hands. In fact, McAfee recommends changing your passwords about every three months at a minimum. This is so that if a password has been shared or compromised, the safety of your online information has a higher chance of being kept safe by making this change. 

“World Password Day is an excellent time to highlight the importance of password safety to consumers. But it is just as important to ensure password hygiene remains top of mind at all times and not just for one day.”

Krupa Srivatsan, Director of Product Marketing at Infoblox

“The average person manages anywhere between 60 and 90 password-protected accounts–a number that goes up for IT professionals. In an ideal world, each password would be a unique set of randomly generated characters and numbers. But that doesn’t really happen. 

“Weak passwords represent a cybersecurity threat for organizations already struggling with security compliance during remote work and the blurring of personal and professional spaces. In fact, more than 80% of data breaches involved brute force or stolen credentials. 

“Organisations need to take a few extra steps to ensure that they don’t compromise on security while their employees are working at home. Improved last-mile endpoint security solutions paired with password best practices can help improve network security.

“For example, Organisations can leverage the benefits of a DNS-first approach for a wide variety of detection and protection purposes, both on and off-premises. Because it sits at the core of the network and touches every device that connects to it, DNS is a powerful tool that can be used to catch the more than 90% of malware that uses it to enter or exit a network.”

John Smith, Solutions Architect at Veracode

“As businesses continue to operate remotely, and companies deploy their infrastructure into online environments, it’s clear that password hygiene should be a big focus. Hackers have the ability to crack a 7-character password in 0.29 milliseconds, which is why it’s time to focus on application authentication. A simple static password will not suffice, and companies should avoid using predictable passwords to avoid damaging password spraying attacks. Passwords should always be unique, not recycled, and stored in a secure password safe. 

“Although businesses are conscious of the role that software security plays in keeping data protected, banks and other industries need to take more ownership of application authentication to help detect fraudulent account access. This World Password Day, I urge businesses to empower developers by training them on best practices in secure coding and providing the right tools to prevent users being more exposed to data breaches from hackers who will continue to look past passwords for weak points in the application layer.“

Ramsés Gallego, International Chief Technology Officer, CyberRes, a Micro Focus line of business: 

“As digital-first approaches and distributed workforces become the status quo for many industries, raising awareness around the importance of password security has arguably never been more important. And with recent NCSC research finding that people are using passwords which are an easy target for hackers, it’s clear more needs to be done by businesses to provide the technology and training to ensure better cyber-resiliency across the board.

“It is imperative that we secure systems and infrastructure to ensure that the right people have the right access to the right assets at the right time. No more, no less. Importantly, we now live in an era where we do not need passwords alone – or sometimes at all – to enable trusted access. Multi-factor authentication is a useful tool, using more personal attributes, such as biometric data in someone’s voice, or devices, such as a code sent to an individual’s watch, to replace or augment passwords.

“Yet despite these advances, there is no doubt that, for now, passwords aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. What’s more, boosting password security – and cyber-resiliency more widely – cannot be achieved by technology alone. Businesses must ensure they are educating their employees on best practice cybersecurity hygiene, beginning with how to create strong passwords and the importance of using different ones for different applications and services. Not only that, they must make sure workforces understand the various tactics used by hackers to target unsuspecting users, from phishing to fake websites. Crucially, increasing awareness among staff on how they could potentially be putting their organisation’s data at risk is key, especially as workforces continue to access systems remotely during and after the pandemic.”

McAfee on cybersecurity for the ‘new normal’ while managing the skills gap

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Cybersecurity is now in the midst of an unprecedented challenge. While the scale, complexity and financial impact of data breaches and cyber attacks continue to increase, the pool of skilled professionals to fill security roles is dwindling.

According to research in March from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, approximately 653,000 (48%) businesses have a basic skills gap, which means that those in charge of cybersecurity at those organisations lack the confidence to carry out the tasks laid out in the Government-backed Cyber Essentials scheme and do not have external support to do so. 

In practice, this means that almost half of UK businesses are unable to tackle the cybersecurity basics, such as setting up firewalls, storing or transferring personal data and detecting and removing malware. A further 408,000 organisations have “more advanced skills gaps”, covering areas such as penetration testing and security architecture.

Being unable to recruit skilled talent is simply exacerbating this problem, with employers identifying 35% of their security vacancies in the last three years as “hard to fill”.

Security teams are now being tasked with greater responsibility than ever, including getting entire workforces mobilised to work from home efficiently and securely, while battling a changing threat landscape. In light of the challenges they face today, it is more important than ever to take an intelligent, cloud-native approach to endpoint security.

We spoke to Adam Philpott, EMEA president at McAfee, about ways of managing the skills gap without compromising on security…

What can be done to tackle the skills gap issue in cybersecurity?

“To tackle such a complex issue requires both “top-of-the-funnel” intervention and investment from government organisations, but also collaboration across the cybersecurity industry and concrete measures from companies themselves.

“We can try to bring talent in further down the line, for example training employees later in their careers, but ensuring we have more talent available in the first place is essential. That is why nationwide investments in training in the technology sector, such as the establishment of a new UK Cyber Security Council to provide a framework for cybersecurity qualifications, are crucial and instrumental to closing the widening skill gap.

“However, there’s much that individual businesses can do to tackle the issue at their level, including implementing initiatives (whether it’s in collaboration with others in the industry or on their own) to promote greater diversity and attract more talent. For example, at McAfee we are targeting talent from outside of IT and security for many roles – an approach that requires thoughtful support mechanisms for onboarding and ongoing development.”

How much of an impact is a lack of diversity having on the wider skills gap, and how can it be combatted?

“A lack of diversity in recruitment processes, often coming through unconscious bias, means that businesses are missing out on large parts of the talent spectrum. This leads to slower progress in tackling the technical skills gap currently facing the industry.

“Building diverse teams should be a no-brainer for businesses, as doing so has clear benefits – from boosting creativity to achieving greater financial success. Companies in the top quartile for gender diversity are 15% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians, as well as benefitting from a wider bank of perspectives and expertise to draw on. Above all, diversity in the workforce is attractive to new talent and leads to better problem solving as well as improved service for customers of all backgrounds and perspectives.

“When working to combat the skills gap, companies should aim to weave diversity into every single process, programme and initiative. In practice, this means constantly thinking about different ways to access a more diverse talent pool, such as implementing flexible working practices. Alongside this, it’s important that companies are addressing the problem in the recruitment and interview processes, to ensure that hiring is as fair as possible. For instance, if an organisation is looking to recruit a better balance of men and women, it could change the wording in job adverts to make them more gender neutral or ensure that there is at least one woman on every interview panel making a recruitment decision on a candidate.”

How can organisations ease the burden on stretched IT teams without compromising on security?

“The average IT department manages thousands of endpoints, from desktops to IoT devices and everything in-between. Unfortunately, many security solutions simply dump too much information on stretched security teams and rely on senior analysts to investigate threats. When the skills gap issue is factored in, this can lead to serious holes in an organisation’s security posture.

“During the last few months of Covid-19 and the shift towards remote working, many businesses have been forced to accelerate a process of digitization, which in turn gives rise to two dimensions of complexity. Firstly, the infrastructure complexity that comes with more devices being connected and more cloud services being consumed. All of this needs protecting within the security OpEx envelope.

Secondly, there’s the security complexity, where a fragmented (or “best of breed”) solution weakens an organisation’s overall security posture. Both of these complexities put an undue burden on talent, exacerbating the ongoing skills gap issue.

“Some businesses look to outsource their threat detection and analysis, but in essence this only shifts the need for experts from one business to another. Rather than take this approach, organisations need to invest in the right cloud-native tools that identify and contain threats, but also help to upskill more junior staff and lighten the load for employees.

“Integrated solutions monitor and collect activity data from endpoints that could point to a threat, providing the visibility and context needed for security personnel to act. By analysing the data to identify threat patterns, its AI-driven response capabilities can automatically remove or contain threats and notify analysts, while the forensics and analytics tools hunt for identified threats and suspicious activities.

“Automation plays a key role here, handling a high volume of low intellect threats, which frees staff up to focus on higher-value work. By trusting in automated investigation, organisations can reduce alert noise and set up processes which enable staff to do more with less. This is vital for the business to maintain a consistently strong security posture, while allowing human personnel to focus on tasks that do more than just keep the lights on.”

McAfee advocates shared responsibility for cyber security in manufacturing

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McAfee’s latest Cloud Adoption and Risk Report revealed that between January and April 2020, enterprise use of cloud in the manufacturing industry spiked by 144%, compared to the average overall enterprise increase of 50%.

Likewise, external attacks on cloud accounts increased by 630%, with manufacturing verticals seeing a 679% increase in threats, making it one of the most affected sectors.

A previous report from McAfee – Grand Theft Data II – The Drivers and Shifting State of Data Breaches – revealed that IT security professionals across all sectors, including manufacturing, are still struggling to fully secure their organisation and protect against breaches, with 61% claiming to have experienced a data breach at their current employer

The firm says data breaches are getting more serious and are under greater scrutiny – nearly three-quarters of all breaches have required public disclosure or have affected financial results.

One major issue highlighted in the report is that security technology continues to operate in isolation, with 81% reporting separate policies or management consoles for cloud access security broker (CASB) and data loss prevention (DLP), resulting in delayed detection and remediation actions.

Mo Cashman, Principle Engineer at McAfee, has outlined key issues with this approach and how they can be addressed:

Why is collaboration and shared responsibility important for improving overall governance in the manufacturing industry?

“We often see blurred lines when it comes to responsibility for data security, cybersecurity and compliance in the manufacturing space. Unfortunately, lack of clarity about who owns what as part of a shared responsibility model means Information Technology (IT) and Operational Technology (OT) convergence is increasing cyber risk. For example, IT systems are used on the OT side, giving OT teams some level of responsibility for managing data security and governance. However, a combination of differing systems and policies as well as lack of transparency between teams can make it challenging to manage security as a whole. This challenge is further compounded because shared responsibility must also factor in the supply chain, and suppliers often bring their own security controls into the mix through the installation of their own devices. 

“By implementing a shared responsibility model, teams can come together and create full visibility of who is responsible for each piece of the puzzle – for example, handling security at system and programming levels. This can ensure that the right controls are adopted where they are needed, while providing an encompassing view of security systems across the organisation.  

“With a collective understanding of risk and responsibility between IT, OT and the supply chain, organisations are moving their security posture and data governance up one level. A good example of this already in practice is the cloud: as organisations become increasingly aware of their role in the shared responsibility model to secure the cloud, they are becoming more aware of their risk levels and able to manage these more effectively.” 

What are the potential consequences for manufacturers that fail to implement  a shared responsibility model across IT/OT/supply chain?

“Failure to adopt a shared responsibility model across IT, OT and the supply chain can leave manufacturers with unnecessary expenses, higher risks and weakened security. From a cost perspective, organisations could be paying for additional but unnecessary security licensing and monitoring. Without clarity on which tools are already in use across IT and OT teams, organisations will not only face challenges with interoperability but they’ll risk doubling up on tooling and training costs. Instead, taking a more holistic approach of the organisation as a whole will enable IT and OT teams to decide where responsibility lies and lower costs. For instance, OT teams have very specific requirements and expertise. While overall monitoring to collect and understand data might sit with IT, OT can layer on context for specific alerts based on their expertise. Taking a collaborative approach where everyone’s responsibility is clear will enable organisations to streamline processes and limit unnecessary costs.

“Ultimately, a key consequence of failing to adopt a shared responsibility model is a higher level of risk and poorer overall security. Without clear dividing lines on responsibility and a collaborative approach, IT will not have the comprehensive view of systems required to keep track of all data and potential threats. As a result, pockets of vulnerable systems are likely – falling through the cracks between teams. Limited visibility means limited security. 

“This security issue is compounded in the manufacturing sector as the type of vulnerabilities impacting IT systems are often very different to those impacting OT. While lots of research exists around IT threats, less research is available on the OT side. Given that OT systems are usually lightweight and could be prone to damage if too much traffic is thrown at them, vulnerability discovery can be challenging. The combination of limited research and levels of system vulnerability which are harder to uncover means manufacturers can easily find themselves exposed to cyberattacks if a shared responsibility model is not employed.” 

What current factors are driving manufacturing organisations to reconsider their current set-up and move to a shared responsibility model?

“Faced with uncertainty and confusion about what the ‘new normal’ will look like has meant business leaders are thinking about resilience more than ever. In doing so, they’re considering their enterprise as a whole – moving away from a more siloed view. For manufacturers, future resilience depends on their systems remaining up and, importantly, secure. This requires business leaders to think more closely about the role that people, process and technology play. When considering a return to normality, organisations are wondering how they would deal with cybersecurity challenges if staff are working remotely, or how they could operate more flexibly to adjust as restrictions ease and tighten in response to the rate of virus transmission in future. Taking this holistic view of the whole organisation inevitably starts to break down barriers between teams and puts the shared responsibility model front and centre.”

What benefits will shared responsibility bring to the future of the manufacturing space?

“Firstly, shared responsibility allows manufacturing organisations to leverage expertise where it lies. For example, while IT teams have a centralised view and understanding of IT risks, they should collaborate with OT teams for industry context as required. Collaboration here will allow for quicker identification and investigation of alerts, reducing response time as teams both detect and mitigate threats more quickly.

“In the manufacturing sector particularly, safety is an important benefit of adopting a shared responsibility. Improved security, via a shared responsibility model, will help teams to uncover security risks before they have major consequences for customers. What’s more, if OT, IT and the supply chain work together, teams will be able to identify new security boundaries and reduce future risk.”

McAfee has also outlined practical steps that manufacturers can take:

·       Elect a governance committee. Creating a committee that includes individuals across IT, OT and the supply chain is vital. It can remove silos and provide a consolidated view of risk across the business as a whole. 

·       Conduct regular audits. Running audits across both IT and OT is key to ensuring visibility across systems, as well as opening doors to question processes and systems. What systems are out there? Who are the suppliers? What SLAs/security contracts are in place? Through these audits, teams can identify risks, kick-start contractual discussions with suppliers and agree the process to mitigate vulnerabilities before they occur.  

·       Start with monitoring. Increasing overall levels of monitoring will provide greater visibility. This monitoring should go hand-in-hand with implementing threat detection capabilities and the response plans that go with them. Ultimately, response times can be reduced if IT and OT teams understand their roles and responsibility in the process. 

·       Asses the overall security architecture. Fostering a more holistic view of the current enterprise set-up and how this maps with existing security standards is crucial. If IT and OT teams use different models to meet different criteria, manufacturers should aim to bring these models together into one consolidated enterprise view of cyber risk. 

·       Create a security awareness programme. By implementing a security awareness and readiness programme, organisations can ensure that all teams are educated on security procedures and are actively involved in maintaining them. This programme should include everyone from end users to OT engineers, and all the way up to executive level, in order to ensure that all areas of the manufacturing process are covered.

McAfee flags autonomous vehicle hacking risks

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IT security giant McAfee’s has successfully tricked an autonomous vehicle to accelerate up to 85 MPH in a 35 MPH zone using just two inches of electrical tape.

The McAfee Advanced Threat Research (ATR) team and McAfee Advanced Analytic Team (AAT) partnered to explore how artificial intelligence can be manipulated through research known by the analytics community as adversarial machine learning or, as McAfee calls it, ‘model hacking‘.

McAfee ATR successfully created a black-box targeted attack on the MobilEye EyeQ3 camera system, utilised today in many vehicles including certain Tesla models. Through this attack, McAfee researchers were able to cause a Tesla model S implementing Hardware pack 1 to autonomously speed up to 85 mph, after manipulating the AI technology to misclassify a speed limit sign that read 35 mph.

McAfee says the implications of this research are significant, because:

  • By 2023, worldwide net additions of vehicles equipped with autonomous driving capabilities will reach 745,705 units, up from 137,129 units in 2018, according to Gartner
  • However, there is more discussion and awareness needed about the potential pitfalls and safety concerns associated with such rapid acceleration in this technology.
  • Given this projected growth, it’s a rare and critical opportunity for the cybersecurity industry and automobile manufacturers to be ahead of adversaries in understanding how AI/machine learning models can be exploited in order to develop safer next-gen technologies.

Mo Cashman, Principle Engineer at McAfee, said: “The automotive and cybersecurity industries will need to work together closely to design, develop, and deploy the right security solutions to mitigate threats both before they occur and after they happen. Unlike automotive safety, cybersecurity is not probabilistic. Threats come from a variety of sources, including intentionally malicious and unintentionally malignant. As a result, processes must be put in place to mitigate these cyber threats over the entire lifecycle of the product, from early design decisions through manufacturing to operation and decommissioning.

“With new systems come new attack surfaces and vectors – all of which should lead to new risk management considerations. Manufacturers must recognise this and take the appropriate measures for cyber resilience. Key actions range from conducting rigorous checks to using security tools to distinguish real threats from ‘noise’. Manufacturers must also ensure connections are secured from the cloud through to the vehicle endpoint, minimising vulnerabilities which hackers could use for their own gain.

“No matter the state of the threat landscape today, best practices for automotive security are an evolution and amalgamation of both product safety and computer security. By collaborating with the cybersecurity industry, the automotive and manufacturing sectors can research, develop, and enhance products, services, and best practices for a more secure driving experience.”

McAfee’s Top Tips for manufacturers:

  • Conduct rigorous checks. There are times when a product functions in a way developers/engineers didn’t expect it to perform, as evidenced by McAfee’s research. Perform rigorous checks and validations, considering new scenarios and edge cases that could be introduced in real-world use that perhaps the technology wasn’t specifically designed to handle. Additionally, McAfee encourages auto manufacturers to assess model hacking in systems.
  • Human-Machine teaming. Adversaries are human, continuously introducing new techniques. Machine learning can be used to automate the discovery of new attack methods; creative problem solving and the unique intellect of the security team strengthen the response.
  • Apply multiple analytic techniques and closely monitor changes. Protection methods include multiple techniques, for example noise addition, distillation, feature squeezing, etc. In addition, implement statistically-based thresholds and closely monitor false positives and false negatives, paying attention to the reason for the change. 
  • Take a ‘one enterprise’ and systems approach to security and risk management. Many organisations still operate in silo and this needs to change. Threats enter from multiple routes. As a result, increased collaboration and achieving one unified view across the manufacturer’s digital workplace, cloud services, industrial controls and supply chain are necessary considerations if a manufacturer is to maintain a strong cybersecurity posture as it develops autonomous vehicles.
  • Build a strong culture of security. For manufacturers, safety is often a strategic pillar of the business. Signs are posted highlighting accident-free days and senior leaders are champions of the programme. Bring that same focus to cybersecurity.

McAfee unveils new enterprise security portfolio

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McAfee says its new MVISION portfolio offers a comprehensive, flexible defense system that manages security products with multiple devices and the cloud in mind.

Specifically, the firm says MVISION strengthens the device as a control point in security architectures by delivering simplified management, stronger Windows security, behavior analytics, and threat defense for Android and iOS devices.

Plus, with its single integrated management workspace, MVISION has been designed to empower enterprise security professionals to proactively manage, optimise, and integrate security controls across any combination of McAfee advanced protection and Windows 10 native capabilities.

“To overcome the complexity created by too many device types, security products, and consoles, things must get simpler and the directional approach to security must shift,” said Raja Patel, vice president and general manager, Corporate Security Products, McAfee. “Modern device security needs to defend the entire digital terrain while understanding the risks at play. This first wave of McAfee’s MVISION technology portfolio provides businesses with an elevated management perspective where security administrators can more easily defend their devices and fight cyber-adversaries in a cohesive and simplified manner.”

The new McAfee MVISION portfolio includes McAfee MVISION ePO, McAfee MVISION Endpoint, and McAfee MVISION Mobile.

ePO is a SaaS that offers a simplified, centralised point of view and comprehension. It removes the deployment and maintenance overhead of backend infrastructure and allows customers to easily migrate their existing ePO environment. Organisations can focus exclusively on reducing security risk with the agility of the cloud ensuring they are always running the latest security capabilities. In addition to the new MVISION ePO SaaS offering, ePO has been updated to enable security teams to better understand threat risks, ensure security compliance, and act faster with less effort than ever before.