This year the UK prepares for GDPR, which means being aware of cyber risks is more important than ever before. Data breaches and cyber-attacks will have much more serious consequences for organisations which don’t adequately protect their data. There are many threats from last year which are still widespread, in addition to new ransomware and viruses released around the world.

Here is our round up of the biggest security threats for 2018 and beyond.

IoT Attacks

Almost all devices are now connected to the internet in some way, making way for the name ‘Internet of Things.’ More and more cyber criminals are targeting IoT devices, because they are often left vulnerable.  Worryingly, IoT attacks rapidly rose by 280% in the first half of 2017, according to an F5 labs report. Specially developed malware can infect devices and turn them into bots – so make sure all devices have top level security.

Spectre and Meltdown

It’s been reported that almost all laptops, desktops and smartphones could have a faulty chip which leaves them open to security risks. The flaws are called Spectre and Meltdown and affect processing chips which are found in Microsoft, Apple, Google and Amazon devices. The advice at the moment is to update software which is a temporary fix, but experts aren’t sure if replacing the chips would help either.

Targeted Malware

This year we’ll see malware become more targeted and personalised. If hackers are targeting a particular company or high net worth individual, they may also attack the entire supply chain including business partners. This means be vigilant with invoices and purchase orders, even if they look legitimate from your supplier – as they could have suffered a recent data breach.

Crime as a Service

CaaS is a huge worry for international bodies trying to combat cybercrime. It allows normal people without the technical know-how to hire the tools and services required to hack certain accounts. This is no longer just targeting big banks and multinational enterprises – you can hire a hacker the same way gangsters hire a hitman. These services are becoming more widely available as cyber criminals operate huge operations around the world.

The scope and pace at which cyber threats are evolving makes it very difficult to protect yourself against. Educate yourself about the latest anti-virus software and be sure to have experts on hand should a data breach occur.