In 2021, cybersecurity risks grew significantly. From healthcare to retail, various industries dealt with serious data breaches, ransomware attacks, and more. These risks also extend beyond a corporate level in many cases, affecting many consumers and families. With online safety, you can never be too careful: this holds especially true when it comes to 2022 cybersecurity threats. For those who work remotely or help their children navigate online classes, you may be familiar with these risks. However, it’s important to prepare for what lies ahead when it comes to being safe on the Internet. Take a look at the biggest 2022 cybersecurity threats and keep these risks in mind throughout the new year.
An advanced persistent threat (APT) is a network attack that uses a variety of stages and techniques against a target. APT attackers typically work in groups to plan their campaigns. In many cases, APT attacks impact organizations through malware, zero-day exploits, and similar methods. The different levels of these attacks mean they can go on for a while, depending on the threat actors’ goals. Examples of these goals include:
- Website or network takeovers
- Capturing sensitive data
- IP (intellectual property) theft
- Stealing high-level credentials
- Accessing private messages (e.g. emails, text messages)
Ensure that you monitor your network traffic if you believe that your organization is encountering an APT attack. Keeping your information safe is a high priority, especially as you move into the new year.
COVID-19 Security Vulnerabilities
Cybercriminals have been taking advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic since it began in 2020. Between the advancement of specific social-engineering attacks and fraudulent websites, attackers have found many ways to exploit their victims. Threat actors have used different methods of attack, including falsifying test results with fake links and more.
However, the pandemic has also shown that many organizations are not secure enough to protect their employees during remote operations. Businesses are quickly learning that they need to incorporate a higher level of privacy and security across the board to ensure their protection from serious attacks. These security vulnerabilities, if left without correction, could be one of the biggest 2022 cybersecurity threats.
In 2021, the widespread use of cryptocurrency saw a vast increase among the general public. From Ethereum to Bitcoin, and even “meme” currency such as Dogecoin, many more investors are exploring the world of cryptocurrency. As a result, cybercriminals are beginning to exploit the various security vulnerabilities in these blockchain investment systems. These attacks are known as “cryptojacking.”
Moving into 2022, investors should keep a closer eye on their crypto wallets to avoid exploits and other cybersecurity threats. Trading over unsecured networks can also produce additional risks. This is especially important for NFT owners. With the end of 2021 producing a number of NFT hacks, it’s necessary to ensure that your data remains secure.
In recent years, advancements made towards the development of deepfake technology have given rise to new cybersecurity attacks. These attacks can lead to identity theft, fraud, and more. “Deepfakes,” an amalgamation of visual and audio footage, act as digital imitations of a person through synthetic content. Through this method, an attacker can assemble passable copies of another individual to impersonate them and steal their data.
Criminals are also introducing methods of voice imitations that can become a dangerous tool for obtaining private information. With this type of deepfake technology, a threat actor can call a bank or other financial institution and transfer funds over to their own account. This is one of many potential attack possibilities as a result of AI and deepfakes.
A distributed denial of service (DDoS) is a serious method of attack that prevents individuals or organizations from accessing private data. These attacks use many different computers to flood a network or system with activity from multiple sources. This approach can distract from more serious attacks, but attackers may also incorporate DDoS into ransomware scams.
Depending on the size, scope, and nature of the attack, threat actors can implement DDoS into devastating cyberwarfare maneuvers. Monitoring network activity and preventing infiltration are important aspects of strengthening your network or system against similar attacks.
The increase in social engineering attacks have many roots in the COVID-19 pandemic, but many of these cybersecurity risks are their own threat. Social engineering attacks include phishing campaigns and other methods that target victims through imitating sources that appear trustworthy. If users are unaware of how to identify these cybersecurity threats, they can easily deceive someone into revealing personal information.
Most instances of social engineering aim to get either data or money from their targets. Some popular methods imitate insurance or credit card companies attempting to collect fees, with one attacker even impersonating the IRS. It’s necessary to stay aware of the methods that these malicious threat actors use in order to avoid common cybersecurity threats.
Each year, ransomware cases stand alone as one of the most key security threats that organizations face. Ransomware, as the name implies, is an attack that involves cybercriminals holding data, or system access, until a victim pays. Attackers use security vulnerabilities and exploit other weaknesses to gain access to a device or entire network.
Cybersecurity awareness is more important than in previous years due to the increase in remote employees. Working with sensitive information on an unsecured network is a notable exploit that cybercriminals could leverage to carry out a ransomware attack. Organizations, and even casual Internet users, should always beware of allowing their privacy to go unprotected.
Reliable Protection from a Secure VPN
As we enter 2022, it’s never been a better time to strengthen your online privacy and ensure that your data is secure. With a robust VPN, you can protect your information and your online activity with the push of a button. PrivadoVPN brings you world-class security features to keep you safe on the Internet while you browse, download, and stream content. Reliable security meets powerful encryption with PrivadoVPN’s global servers backed by Swiss privacy laws, the most comprehensive in the world.
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