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Business Communication Risks to Watch in 2024

As we head into 2024, SafeGuard Cyber’s CTO Steven Spadaccini shares the top business communication risks that enterprises should be aware of as we enter 2024.

SafeGuard Cyber

1. The adoption of AI tools in the enterprise will put companies at greater risk of customer data and intellectual property leakage.

As AI continues to revolutionize various industries, it also brings new risks and challenges for enterprises. With the increased use of AI platforms in sales, customer service, marketing, and other areas, companies will be at greater risk of customer data and intellectual property leakage. A few examples of the risks are as follows:


Data Poisoning: AI systems are often trained on large datasets. If a malicious insider or attacker can influence the data used for training, they can introduce biases or false information into the system, leading to incorrect or harmful outcomes.


Evasion Attacks: Sophisticated AI systems, like those used in customer service, can be fooled by inputs, leading to incorrect decisions or the revealing of sensitive information.


Privacy Issues: AI systems that process personal data can be a target for attackers seeking to extract private information, leading to breaches of customer privacy.


This could lead to a major breach that could impact not only the company itself but also its customers and partners.


2. Regulatory bodies will accelerate the crackdown on the use of ephemeral messaging. Large and coordinated attacks will take place over WhatsApp.

In recent years, there has been growing concern over the use of ephemeral messaging apps such as Telegram and WhatsApp, which automatically delete messages after a certain period of time. These apps can make it more difficult to monitor and track malicious activity, making them an attractive target for cybercriminals. As a result, regulatory bodies will start to crack down on the use of these apps and larger coordinated attacks will take place on popular platforms such as WhatsApp.


3. A major breach will occur that touches three or more communication channels in the enterprise. SMS, email, and collaboration tools like Slack or Microsoft Teams will be affected.

While most companies are aware of the risks of individual communication channels such as email or SMS, they may not be fully prepared for the potential fallout of a breach that affects multiple channels. In 2024, a major breach will occur that touches three or more communication channels in the enterprise. This will be a wake-up call for many companies to reassess their cybersecurity strategies and invest in more comprehensive solutions.


4. SOC leaders will be focused on reducing alert fatigue and closing the gap between L1 & L3 analysts with AI technology.

Hackers are using AI to mount more automated, aggressive, and coordinated language-based attacks across multiple communication channels, making it challenging for today’s resource-constrained security teams to respond to every detected threat. To make matters worse, there is a shortage of skilled professionals in the industry to handle them. SOC leaders will prioritize reducing alert fatigue and closing the skills gap between Level 1 (L1) and Level 3 (L3) SOC analysts with AI technology. While breach alerts won’t decrease in 2024, AI technology will empower L1 SOC analysts to take action to break the attack chain.


5. Smishing takes over for the easiest vector to attack.

While phishing has long been a common tactic for cybercriminals, new vulnerabilities are emerging all the time. In 2024, smishing (SMS phishing) will take over as the easiest vector to attack, as cybercriminals seek out new ways to bypass email filters and other traditional defenses.


6. Machines against the machines - cybersecurity innovation will begin combating a cyber attack offense with machine learning and AI tools.

As the world becomes more reliant on artificial intelligence and machine learning, cybersecurity experts are exploring new ways to leverage these technologies in defense against cyberattacks. In the coming years, we'll see more battles between machines, as cyberattack offense and defense strategies become increasingly automated and sophisticated.


7. There will be a significant number of executives impersonated, and we will see the bad actors achieving success with more than just gift card purchases.

We will see the use of deepfake technology, AI, and social engineering to impersonate high-level individuals with a much higher rate of success when trying to take over critical enterprise accounts and data.


Zero Trust requires careful planning and implementation. It demands that organizations know their architecture and data flows intimately so that they can effectively implement controls that verify and secure access at every stage. It’s not just about preventing unauthorized access; it's also about ensuring the user's true identity.


8.Cyber focused geopolitical tactics will increase. In 2024, a nation-state will attack another cybersecurity company with deep ties to another foreign entity.

As geopolitical tensions continue to rise around the world, cybersecurity experts are exploring the potential implications of a global conflict. In World War III, there will be significant challenges in maintaining secure communication channels and protecting sensitive data. It’s important for cybersecurity solutions with national identities to stay one step ahead of their adversaries. Large firms with deep state ties are often responsible for protecting many companies. This trickle-down effect could be devastating.


9. There will be a major breach of cloud platforms.

As more companies move their operations to the cloud, the importance of cloud platform security becomes increasingly clear. In 2024, we'll see a major breach of cloud platforms, highlighting the need for better security measures and more rigorous oversight.


10. Fraud will move out of email and span multiple communication channels.

For years, email has been the primary channel for fraudulent activity such as phishing and other scams. In the coming years, we'll see a shift away from email-based fraud, as cybercriminals explore new channels such as SMS, social media, and other workplace messaging apps such as Slack or Microsoft Teams.


The increasing adoption of business communication channels like Slack, Teams, WhatsApp, and Telegram significantly increases the potential for cyber threats, necessitating a shift in security strategies. With cyber adversaries continuously developing new methods to exploit vulnerabilities through these communication channels, humans remain the greatest threat to businesses. As we enter the new year, now is the time for organizations to fortify their defenses in order to protect their critical data and operations. In order to ensure maximum safety and compliance, maintaining multi-channel coverage with full visibility is key.

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