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12 Cybersecurity Predictions For 2021 Every Organization Must Consider Cybersecurity is set to change rapidly, with immense growth in spending across all sectors. The following twelve cybersecurity predictions for 2021 show the rising challenges and opportunities for the near future

By Remesh Ramachandran

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Cybersecurity will remain a booming field in 2021, with almost 3.5 million posts that need to be filled. However, the landscape is set to undergo massive changes, and organizations need to have an idea about the future to take the necessary steps to adapt to the fast-changing threat landscape. The following twelve cybersecurity predictions will help organizations understand how COVID-19 has altered workplace habits and demand for cybersecurity solutions.

Larger cybersecurity budgets and more full-time cyber staff

PwC Global Digital Trust Insights 2021 found that more than half of all enterprises (55 per cent) state they will be increasing their cybersecurity budgets. Around 51 per cent of the executives in the survey said they would add full-time cybersecurity staff.

Security services to be the most rapidly growing and largest segment in security market

According to IDC, security services will account for about half of all cybersecurity spending till 2024, with a CAGR of 10.5 per cent. Managed security services are predicted to be the largest category with a CAGR of 13.6 per cent, followed by software such as end-point security, intelligence, analytics and orchestration software.

Four enterprise sectors will see the fastest growth In cybersecurity spending through 2021

McKinsey predicts that healthcare, finance, media technology, and the public sector will see the most rapid growth in cybersecurity spending.

SMBs cybersecurity spending to grow at 10 per cent CAGR till 2024

According to Analysys Mason, the worldwide cybersecurity spending of small and medium businesses (SMBs) will grow at 10 per cent CAGR, making the market worth $80 billion by 2024.

Cybersecurity IT spending to grow at 12 per cent CAGR by 2021 due to exponential increase in cybercrime

Rising cybercrime that includes phishing, breaches, end-point security and abuse of credentials will cause the global market for cybersecurity software to grow to $230 billion in 2021 from $183 billion in 2019. That is a CAGR of 12 per cent, says IDC.

IAM, network security, and messaging security will be spending hotspots

McKinsey says that identity and access management (IAM), network and messaging security will be three hotspots in security spending.

Intellectual property will be targeted more often

CEO Flinton Brenton of Centrify says that IP will be targeted more often in 2021. COVID-19 saw an alarming rise in attacks targeting IP such as the Russian APT29 that targeted the US, Canada and the UK. It makes more financial sense for adversaries as IP can fetch several hundred thousand dollars.

Cybercrime costs to grow 15 per cent for 5 years reaching $10.5 trillion a year

Cybersecurity Ventures found that if cybercrime were to be compared to countries, it would be the world's third-largest economy after the US and China. Costs will grow to $10.5 trillion in 2025 from $3 trillion in 2015.

Three cybersecurity technologies will become very influential by 2023

Gartner's Impact Radar for Security Framework predicts that cloud workload protection, password-less authentication and cloud security posture management will be the most influential technologies within three years. Zero trust networking will also become significant.

Improvements in AI and machine learning will let devices self-heal and self-secure

In 2021, AI/ML advances will allow devices to self-secure and self-heal by up to 80 per cent, says Alan Braithwaite, senior director at Ivanti. This advancement will enable employees to have a personalized, ambient device experience regardless of the location of work or device used.

More consolidation among end-point security vendors

Analysys Mason notes that though larger security vendors are growing organically via acquisition, smaller vendors in end-point security are finding it hard to increase revenue. Several end-point security vendors have low annual revenue below $500 million and combined with low differentiation and slow growth, consolidations are inevitable.

Non-America-headquartered cybersecurity organizations will see 20 per cent rise in cybersecurity funding in 2021

Forrester Cybersecurity's principal analyst, Heidi Shey, says that MNCs will have to abandon their single-sourcing approach and accept the reality of region-based point solutions. She also says that toxic security culture will likely lead to a fortune 500 CISO being fired. Increased budgetary pressures will cause a rise in the adoption of risk quantification technology.

Final word

As CIO Dianne Lapieer of Absolute Software says, 2021 will see a high appetite for mitigating risk but a comparatively lower desire for budgetary increases. Cybersecurity will nevertheless witness significant increases in spending, but challenges will continue to mount. Substantial changes to policies and the adoption of new technology are necessary. For instance, before the pandemic, 82 per cent of organizations allowed bring-your-own-device (BYOD), but 72 per cent lacked malware protection for BYOD. Such situations must change.
Remesh Ramachandran

CISO | Security Researcher | Ethical hacker

Remesh Ramachandran is an ethical hacker. He has solved several sophisticated cybercrime and real-world hacking cases, and has worked for the government and various other national and international agencies. Remesh is currently working as a CISO (Chief Information Security Officer) for an organisation.

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