Thursday, 7 January 2016

Increased cyber security threats for Irish firms predicted 2016



Datapac, today warns there will be increased cyber security threats for Irish organisations in 2016. Following an end-of-year ICT review, Datapac warns that email phishing scandals, such as those that affected household names like Electric Ireland last year, are on the increase.

Other cyber security threats Irish organisations should be aware of in 2016 include Trojans that encrypt mission critical data, preventing organisations from being able to access it. Perpetrators of this kind of attack hold the data for ransom forcing companies to pay for release with no guarantee they will actually follow through once payment has been received.

The importance of data protection and compliance will be significant in 2016. Organisations are acutely aware of the financial and reputational damage from losing data and will make greater provisions in 2016 to make sure they are protected. This will mean more investment in solutions like on premise private cloud and systems to prevent staff from taking data with them when they leave the organisation.

Cloud services will continue to grow this year, particularly in the areas of disaster recovery and business continuity, as Irish businesses ensure the continued availability of their mission critical data. However, on premise storage will also grow, as Irish organisations are still uncomfortable moving potentially sensitive information like applications or mission critical data to the cloud. Independent research commissioned by Datapac in 2015 showed that the amount of data stored by Irish organisations grew by more than 40% last year[1], with this trend set to continue at pace into 2016.

Another expected growth area in 2016 will be the development and availability of cloud printing solutions and Near Field Communication (NFC). With NFC becoming standard now, it is making wireless printing easy for everyone in the office. With wireless direct printing, people can print from their NFC-enabled smartphones and tablets with just a touch.

Demand for a wide number of wireless technologies will grow in 2016, including wearable technologies, wireless charging and increasingly powerful smartphones and mobile devices. Research from Ericsson indicates there will be some 26 billion connected devices in the world by 2020.[2] This will put pressure on organisations to provide resilient and secure infrastructure to accommodate its mobile workforce connecting to the corporate network via multiple devices, whether in the office or on the move.

Speaking about Datapac’s predictions and review of the Irish ICT landscape, David Kinsella, CTO, Datapac said: “Information Security is a key area to watch in 2016. Threats are growing and becoming ever more sophisticated and Irish businesses are putting more comprehensive protection and compliance at the top of their New Year wish lists. We’re advising companies to look at their security requirements holistically and prioritise spend where needed – there is no silver bullet for easy protection.

“As cloud services are also set to grow, Irish businesses need to plan carefully about what information and applications are stored there. Moving everything to the cloud is rarely feasible and any investment should be carefully considered. The growth of wireless is inevitable - mobile devices outnumber human beings and the ratio between the two will grow exponentially in the next few years.”

Patrick Kickham, director, Datapac added: “There will be further exciting developments in the areas of managed print and document workflow. There’s been a lot of hype about 3D Printing, which will continue to grow in some manufacturing industries. However, the availability of cloud and wireless printing will become much more of a reality for most businesses in the year to come.”

Karen O’Connor, general manager service delivery, Datapac concluded: “2016 is set to be a year of strong growth for many Irish businesses in 2016. This poses some extra challenges, particularly for IT departments as they look to manage increasing numbers of people joining their organisations as well as growing volumes of data and devices. Datapac will continue to provide Irish businesses with all the ICT support and advice they need so they can focus fully on their growth strategies.”