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December 6, 2017

100% cyberattack explosion predicted in next two years

This prediction places a spotlight on the critical cyber skills shortage, and raises awareness to the potentially impending IoT security crisis.

By Tom Ball

It has been predicted that we are set to see a mountainous 100 per cent cyberattack spike over the next two years, driven by factors including IoT and skills shortages.

Behind this frightening prediction is Peter Woollacott, CEO, Huntsman Security, who believes that connecting critical infrastructure to the internet is going to be a dangerous accelerant.

Such a tidal wave of attacks could potentially be devastating, says Mr Woollacott, who also places a focus on the critical shortage of security analysts.

Peter Woollacott, CEO of Huntsman Security, said: “With the ISACA predicting a global shortage of two million cybersecurity jobs by 2019, there simply aren’t enough security analysts in the UK, or even the world, to cope with the growing threat that critical infrastructure faces.”

This devastating scenario echoes the eerie tone of a prediction made recently by Dr Ian Levy, the Director of the National Cyber Security Centre, who foresees a crippling category one cyberattack in the next five years.

“National agencies are already reporting a significant increase in reported attacks, let alone those that pass undetected. As more elements of services move online, so there are many more opportunities for attackers of any size or capability to try their luck. As a result, our critical infrastructure faces a blizzard of attacks of varying sophistication – any one of which could be as damaging as WannaCry or Stuxnet. Even a simple DDoS attack has brought services such as Sweden’s trains to their knees recently,” Mr Woollacott said.

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The WannaCry ransomware attack of summer 2017 made an indelible mark on the world, particularly in the UK where the NHS had to revert to using pen and paper, as the real world damage of a cyberattack was realised.

Leaving no illusions, the Huntsman CEO said: “There’s no way to block all of these potential attacks at the walls of an organisation, and security analysts will soon be overwhelmed by the sheer volume they face. If organisations can’t address these challenges, the danger to the public, and the harm to the organisation itself, will be unacceptable.”

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