Rajnish Gupta has been the Regional Director, India and SAARC at RSA Security since September 2017. His career spans over three decades in different senior roles at security companies. Gupta joined RSA in mid-2012 as the enterprise sales head for RSA in the region. Prior to joining RSA, he was regional sales director for Symantec for over a year.
In an interaction with CSO India, Gupta shares his thoughts on the threat landscape. In his point of view, efforts should be made by CSOs to bridge the gap between businesses and operations by implementing business driven security approach instead of the traditional 'point' approach.
What are the three biggest security challenges that you see in 2019?
As organizations become increasingly digital, the challenge of tackling cyber-crime becomes more difficult. Digitization is stretching the security parameter and expanding the number of cyber-attack vectors. With adoption of digital technologies, more digital risks are evolving, and technology is getting into products and services where it never existed. The top three trends or challenges that RSA perceives for 2019 are:
Growing use of mobile to commit cyber-crime: The popularity of mobile channels to be used a platform for fraud will continue through 2019. This is because cyber criminals keep finding ways to introduce tactics and technologies such as phishing and malware to the mobile channel. For example, via smishing (use of SMS texts rather than email to deliver phishing messages), mobile 2FA phishing and mobile malware.
Adoption of legitimate digital platforms for illicit activities: By the end of last year, social media fraud attacks have increased by 43 percent as cyber criminals continue to find new ways to exploit social media platforms for gain. RSA predicts this trend to expand and continue.
Use of advanced technologies to both commit and fight cyber crime: RSA predicts 2019 will see more cyber crime based on automation and IoT, accompanied by more technology-driven anti-fraud capabilities.
Which technologies are disrupting the cybersecurity landscape?
The adoption of futuristic technologies such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, internet of things, big data, blockchain and cloud adoption by organizations across segments, has disrupted the cybersecurity landscape.
How can enterprises prepare better to deal with zero-day attacks and advanced persistent threats?
When we talk about zero-day attacks, we are talking about new unknown attacks every day. The approach is to identify risk to the business. Identification, understanding and management of risks will enable security teams to easily prioritize risks and coordinate response across businesses to deal with the threats. Thus, the approach employed should be a solution rather than being product-centric.
It is important that organizations do not look at it as an isolated event but rather as an amalgamation of all risks and challenges needing a hands-on approach. A holistic solution that breaks down silos and provides organizations with the technology, processes, and insights to face cyber-attacks with confidence, has to be incorporated. An integrated risk management approach that assesses risks horizontally across risk domains can help organizations manage newer risks stemming from digital transformation activities.
What impact will artificial intelligence and automated threat intelligence have on cybersecurity initiatives in the days to come?
“While AI/ML are a beacon of hope for defending organizations against damaging data breaches, threat actors also use them to launch bigger and more sophisticated attacks.”
Technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) hold great promise to intelligently help organizations and prioritize efficiently the flood of security threats and alerts that engulf the organizations every day. While AI/ML are a beacon of hope for defending organizations against damaging data breaches, threat actors also use them to launch bigger and more sophisticated attacks.
Threat actors use machine learning for building malware that evades the defenses, makes social engineering and spear-phishing attacks smarter and more personal, and bombards automated systems with false positives. As the digital transformation of both business and cyber crime continues, organizations must be increasingly vigilant, and technologically well-equipped to protect themselves from sophisticated attacks. In this way, digital transformation becomes both a critical contributing factor in the problem of growing cyber risks today—and also, a critical resource for solving it.
What is your advice to CSOs and other top level security management professionals?
RSA’s message to the market is to look at digital risk management rather than just focusing on point solutions. Digital risk is a new form of risk and is larger than the security or cyber risks that we faced earlier. The key in today’s scenario is to first know the business and the associated risks, and then draw a mitigation plan in accordance to the problem rather than pitching technology to the problem.
Efforts should be made by CSOs and top-level management professionals to bridge the gap between businesses and operations by implementing business driven security approach instead of the traditional point approach.