by January 13, 2012 0 comments

The upcoming new year will see cybercriminals act with even more persistency and sophistication,
as the world shifts from the PC-centric desktop toward mobile and cloud computing. The
repercussion for IT administrators will be an imperative to approach security with a data-centric
framework — protecting the data, not just the systems — according to Trend Micro’s global network of
threat researchers and analysts. The company has just released its “12 Threat Predictions for 2012”
report (available here) that spans four primary areas: Big IT trends, mobile landscape, threat
landscape, and data leaks and breaches.

Trend Micro’s “12 Threat Predictions for 2012” include:

The real challenge for data center owners will be the increasing complexities of securing physical,
virtual, and cloud-based systems.

While attacks specifically targeting virtual machines (VMs) and cloud computing services remain a
possibility, attackers will find no immediate need to resort to these because conventional attacks will
remain effective in these new environments. Virtual and cloud platforms are just as easy to attack
but more difficult to protect. The burden will thus fall on IT administrators who will have to secure
their company’s critical data as they adopt these technologies.

Security and data breach incidents in 2012 will force companies worldwide to face BYOD-related

The Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) Era is here to stay. With more corporate data stored or
accessed by devices that are not fully controlled by IT administrators, the likelihood of data loss
incidents caused by improperly secured personal devices will rise.

Mobile platform threats usually come in the form of malicious apps, but moving forward, Trend Micro expects cybercriminals to go after legitimate apps, finding vulnerabilities or coding errors that can lead to data exposure or theft.

Online groups such as Anonymous and LulzSec rose to prominence in 2011, targeting companies
and individuals for various political reasons. These groups are likely to become even more motivated
in 2012. They will become more skilled both at penetrating organizations and at avoiding detection
by IT professionals and law enforcement agencies.

Young social networkers have a different attitude toward protecting and sharing information: They are more likely to reveal personal information online to a wider audience beyond their friends. In time,
privacy-conscious people will become the minority-an ideal prospect for attackers.

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