Cybersecurity needs cyber deception: stay alert and be aware

Year after year, cyber-attacks are becoming more prevalent, yet businesses remain vulnerable. Modern technologies have evolved as security risks have risen, however, only 12% of organisations asked said that their cybersecurity tools were sufficient and could cope with the expanding volume of data on their attack surface.

The same report revealed that respondents see the prevention of data damage as one of their main concerns for safeguarding their data and responding to attacks. To reduce the likelihood of these attacks, businesses must focus on welcoming new ways of combating the sophisticated, creative tactics of today’s cybercriminals. Cyber deception is one of the latest approaches that can detect and defend against malicious manoeuvres, and attract and entrap skilled, intelligent hackers. It is time to step forward into an offensive stance; there are few other options left.

Stuck in the old ‘honeypot’

Honeypots have been around for the last 20 years and are a tried and tested cybersecurity measure. Filling a business’ network with attractive assets will coax cybercriminals into a trap where their behaviour can be learned from to develop cybersecurity strategies. However, this method is inherently flawed. It only provides a narrow field of view – if the cybercriminal accesses the network, but not through a honeypot, the business will be none the wiser. They are also time-consuming to implement, with each one taking as long as an hour to install, potentially putting off some security teams from utilising them effectively.

By preoccupying attackers and being given the chance to learn their techniques, honeypots have held a meaningful role in the development of cybersecurity measures. Since the last millennia, cyber deception has emerged, bringing the honeypot concept into 2023, changing the cybersecurity landscape, and giving companies the advantage they need. 

The new normal: Cyber deception

Cyber deception is the modern take on the ‘honeypot’ tactic; a ‘honeynet’, if you will. It is an innovative cybersecurity technology that uses an automated, cloud-based platform, which has the goal of luring attackers to virtual snares. Unlike honeypots, when bad actors are engaged by these threat sensors, organisations can leap into action rather than simply observe. The asset can then be isolated with response times seriously reduced. This prevents cybercriminals from accessing real, sensitive data. Cyber deception is a sophisticated and reliable tool that uses automation to create a seamless experience for IT teams. 

Cyber deception allows companies to combine a defence mechanism with an early detection system, creating a comprehensive and sophisticated strategy. Cyber deception can also identify if there is a cybercriminal within an organisation’s system, given it is not restricted to the outer edges of a network, and patch security gaps in real-time.

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Being ready to react to attacks is important, but prevention and proactivity are key. With the ability to quickly deploy a decoy, organisations can build an attractive, simple path for hackers to go down and attack what appear to be easy targets. These decoys are also invisible to those that are accessing the system legitimately, reducing the chances of false alarms and alert fatigue.

Serious harm must lead to meaningful solutions

Adopting the latest, multi-layered technology and being open to innovative approaches is the way forward for adopting a meaningful change to a business’ cybersecurity strategy. In today’s world, harmful cyber attacks are no longer a possibility, they are inevitable. Now is the time to be vigilant and create a fresh and strategic approach to cybersecurity. The annual cost of these breaches is expected to be over £6.5 trillion in 2023. Furthermore, 146 billion cyber threats were identified in 2022, an increase of 55% since 2021. The tactics of cybercriminals are rapidly evolving, so failing to engage and plan for new ways of thinking will undoubtedly lead to attacks.

Given the amount of data breaches that appear in the news week after week, civilians and industry professionals alike have begun to understand how prevalent these attacks are, and the seriousness of their impact thereafter. In an evolving, data-driven world, the potential for significant damage is only increasing. In order to get ahead and avoid being the victim, techniques like cyber deception must be implemented to put businesses in the best position possible. Businesses should hope for the best but prepare for the worst, and the technology is at their fingertips to achieve this!

Senior Director of International Systems Engineering at

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