Top Cybersecurity Trends for Edge and IoT in 2023
If 2022 showed us anything is to always expect the unexpected. From a full-fledged war in Ukraine, massive supply chain disruptions, more Covid-19 variants but an ease in sanitary restrictions, the looming threat of a recession, to a fully-conversational AI-based chatbot, and more, packed 2022 with plenty of headlines.
Across industries, 2022 also showed a sharp spike in an employment boom, but by the end of the year, many big players like Meta, Microsoft, Amazon, and more, stopped hiring and downsized as they worried about the global economy, falling sales, inflation, rising interest rates and more. But the cybersecurity space didn't seem to be affected by these trends. Some reports say that by the end of the year, there will be 700,000 open security jobs just in the United States.
Even though the number of jobs for tech professionals in cybersecurity stayed the same, the industry and the cyber threats that big and small businesses face are always changing. Ransomware, for example, is still a growing problem with new players and techniques being found almost every week.
As 2023 approaches, cybersecurity experts and people who keep an eye on the industry are tuned in to the latest trends that could have a significant impact over the next year.
Next, we highlight some of the biggest trends you should keep an eye out for in 2023, specifically in the Edge and IoT areas.
1. Increased human and AI collaboration
The use of intelligent machines and autonomous robots is on the rise. Intelligent machines are becoming more common, from automated warehouses that can handle same-day deliveries to robots that monitor oil and gas facilities for spills to robot arms that work with humans on a production line.
Gartner finds that by the end of the decade, the use of robotics and intelligent machines will grow dramatically. “By 2030, 80% of humans will engage with smart robots on a daily basis, due to smart robot advancements in intelligence, social interactions and human augmentation capabilities, up from less than 10% today.”
For this future to happen, one thing that needs to be worked on in 2023 is making it easier for people and machines to work together. Robots are reliable and consistent and can do things over and over again, which is good for automated processes. This frees up humans to do tasks that require more skill and specialization.
Specific to cybersecurity, automated AI-based cybersecurity will continue to disrupt the traditional means of approaching the safety of Edge networks and IoT devices. For instance, autonomous, AI-based cybersecurity has no issue processing massive volumes of data points to search for even the slightest anomaly with the highest accuracy. On top of that, it can be taught to detect threats and ongoing attacks as early as possible to prevent crippling losses as well as deploy automated incident response and remediation protocols with detailed reports for humans to understand the type, scale, and potential damage of halted attacks.
2. Greater Spotlight on Edge Cybersecurity
CISOs and IT organizations are putting a lot of effort into this Edge cybersecurity. Edge computing, especially when combined with AI use cases, can increase cybersecurity risks for many organizations by making it easier to attack outside of the traditional data center and its firewalls.
In industries like manufacturing, energy, and transportation, where AI is typically used at the Edge, security professionals need to expand their security footprint into areas that have usually been handled by operational technology teams. Operational technology teams usually use operational efficiency as their main metric and rely on systems that can't connect to the outside world because they are air-tight. Edge AI use cases will start to break down these restrictions, which will require security professionals to enforce strict security standards.
With billions of devices and sensors around the world that will all be connected to the internet, organizations need to protect edge devices from direct attacks and think about network security. You can expect to see AI used to improve cybersecurity in 2023. Log data from IoT networks can now be fed into smart security models. These models can look for suspicious behavior and alert security teams to take action.
3. Sharp Rise of Digital Twins
Digital twins are virtual copies of real-world assets, processes, or environments that are physically accurate and perfectly in sync. Leading companies across all industries stand to benefit from building operational digital twins to simulate and improve their production environments.
The growth of IoT sensors and data, which is driving both digital twins and edge computing, is the link between the real world and the digital world. In 2023, organizations will connect live data from their real worlds to their virtual simulations more and more. They will move away from simulations based on historical data and toward a real digital twin, which is a live digital environment.
By connecting live data from the real world to their digital twins, organizations can get real-time information about their surroundings, which helps them make decisions faster and better. Even though it's still early, next year will be a big year for ecosystem providers and customers who use this technology.
3. Stronger Zero-Trust Adoption
Anyone who works in technology or security and has heard the term "zero trust" in the past year can expect to hear more about it in 2023. As more and more organizations rethink their security, the need for a zero-trust approach, which gets rid of the idea of a security perimeter and a trusted identity, keeps growing.
In a report by Gartner, we find that zero trust network access will continue to be the fastest-growing part of network security, with growth of 36% in 2022 and 31% in 2023. The report said that a lot of this is “driven by the increased demand for zero-trust protection for remote workers and organizations’ reducing dependence on VPNs for secure access,”
Organizations will likely expand their zero-trust programs beyond the identity, device, and network levels. The principle of least privilege needs to be enforced further down in the technology stack. Zero trust is something that can never be completely reached. Instead, it is more of an ongoing process that moves an organization closer to the motto "never trust, always verify."
Cybersecurity at the Edge in 2023
In 2022, the world was in a state of constant disruption, with so many tech trends on hold while others accelerated. Companies had to rethink their budgets for new technology because of problems with their supply chains, a lack of workers, and economic uncertainty.
AI is seen by many organizations as a way to deal with growing uncertainty because of the improved results it delivers, including:
- Reduced time to detect, respond to, and recover from incidents.
- Enhanced security governance and compliance.
- Mitigated fatigue and improved analyst ability to make better, more informed decisions—faster and with fewer errors.
- Reduced total cybersecurity costs by at least 15%, indicating efficiency and productivity gains across security lifecycle processes for protection, prevention, detection, and response.
- Reduced data breach costs by at least 18%, signaling improvements in detection and response process efficiency. This translates in a reduction—or avoidance—of operational and reputational costs.
- Improved return on security investment (ROSI) by 40% or more.
AI has done almost all of its work in the cloud up until now. But sensors at the edge are making more and more different streams of data all the time. Because of this need for real-time inference, more AI deployments are moving to edge computing.
AI-based cybersecurity brings better efficiency, automation, and important cost savings to all industries, which is why AI adoption in cybersecurity will surely show growth this year.