At this time of year, we are all trying to make predictions about the future and, come New Year, some resolutions. So below I have kicked this off with a few of my own - please comment, challenge and add! Also checkout our What We Think page to make those New Year resolutions and avoid the headlines.

Identity will once again raise its ugly head

We have known for a long time that passwords do not provide the necessary level of assurance that is required in the mobile digital age. Convenience and security are uneasy bedfellows and, although passwords are convenient, they are increasingly seen as weak tokens of identity. The demand for convenience by the consumer and digital workforce and the increase in mobile phone use will drive a renewed emphasis for identity solutions. Combining something you have with somewhere you are and something you know will see the decline of passwords as the primary authentication method. This combination of physical and digital, with the emergence of advanced authentication methods, will provide the catalyst for new identity solutions.

The phone for everything

The digital workforce lives and works in a society where mobile is king and most other things are being replaced by it – from mobile cash to social mobile. Our phone is now our digital hub, controlling how we are identified and authenticated into our world and how we control and interact digitally. Because of this, we will see threat vectors concentrate on the devices in our hand rather than the devices on our laps. Security is traditionally focused on backend systems or containers – but this approach will have to change with protection built into mobile devices from the ground up.

User behaviour focus on insider threats

The threat from within has long been a headache for businesses, but advances in data analytics and increased focus on anomaly detection will continue into 2017. Defining normal behaviour will still be the challenge as businesses become increasingly dynamic, but advances in machine learning techniques will see user behaviour analytics added to endpoint solutions.

Deception rather than cure

We will see the increased use of deception technologies inside corporate boundaries. These are an extension to the honeypots that proliferate the Internet. It is a different approach that some organisations will adopt, but effectively accepts that an organisation will be breached at some point.

The end of signature detection

Whether we call this next generation AV or end point protection or endpoint detection and response, we are clearly seeing the evolution of endpoint protection beyond the use of just static signatures. The use of advanced data analytics now applies to any detection capability. The sharing of a known bad across the “platform” is essential and leveraging the cloud is a critical component of these solutions. The sheer volume and diversity of malware is driving a new approach that combines global collaboration – a ‘breach once, protect many’ philosophy, combined with threat intelligence to predict attacks and actively protect – to prevent the patient zero syndrome.


Data integrity has to be paramount as we increasingly rely on digital systems to hold every aspect of our lives. This reliance will drive blockchain adoption, with Bitcoin being the most well known. Banks are clearly advanced in this area, but the underlying techniques and trust model will be considered in other areas where data integrity is paramount. New payments services are already being introduced because they offer greater security and are cheaper to implement than current systems. However, it will take greater industry adoption and collaboration before this really takes hold.

The rise of the complete services companies

The consolidation of the cybersecurity landscape is also leading businesses to focus on the complete services solutions across the ICT stack. Where previously the value from an MSSP was stitching together a complex and in-depth solution, the value now is in providing embedded security into the complete lifecycle of the business and providing business applications, network infrastructure, cloud and data centres, along with the single pane of glass and single provider solution. Components of a complete solution provided by different suppliers will no longer be the norm. Providers will have to be able to provide a co-ordinated and complete end-to-end service for the digital workspace.