The ability to protect online content from unauthorized use and redistribution while distinguishing attacks from legitimate flash crowds brought in by marketing strategies will increasingly be a digital imperative.
2. Massively-distributed, cloud-based security controls will gain traction
The number of DDoS attacks will continue to rise because they are becoming easier to execute. The attack surface has increased, the attack methods have evolved, and, unknown to them, the Internet of Things devices that are coming online are being targeted to propagate botnets, while defences that are static are easily bypassed. Also, trusted connections can now serve as a back-channel for attacks and supply chain and third parties will be increasingly more targeted by attacks, which makes a network- centric security approach inadequate.
In APJ specifically, we have seen regular attacks in a form of:
o Account Checkers performing log-in abuses
o Domain and DNS hijackings
o Active scrapers and bots
o Defacements and cross-site scripting
o SQL injections
This is the age of the elastic network - a concept where security policies are contextually aware and data-centric and are delivered beyond your network boundary, and we expect this concept to resonate strongly with organizations in the coming year. A massively distributed, cloud-based defence with security controls and defences that are aligned with, and closer to, the resources that organizations wish to protect, is an imperative in today's high-threat environment.
Mark Ablett, Vice President, South Asia for Juniper Networks (pic) key points also took in the broader connectivity picture behind IoT:
Big data and networks: opportunity or catastrophe?
As the tentacles (read: devices) of the so-called Internet of Things continues reaching into new parts of our lives, there will simply be a lot more data generated. For example, even the simplest connection between phone and home security systems will generate data that needs to be stored somewhere. What this will bring in 2015 is threefold: a newfound need to analyse this data, the required network infrastructure to make sense of it all and security technologies to secure it. Demand for data scientists will reach a fever pitch as service providers and enterprises rethink the way they build networks to handle the onslaught of data.
Life after 4G
When wireless carriers moved from 3G to 4G offerings, it was arguably the first time customers could viably expect to stream content on the go. More and more providers and technology companies are exploring 5G, but are the networks ready for it? And moreover, what will 5G actually enable beyond what we have now? Study after study has shown that increased mobile speeds means people simply consume more. As unlimited data plans dwindle and more connected devices come online (think a toaster that texts you when it's ready), will people be willing to foot the bill for the next-gen speeds of 5G? These are the questions service providers will need to ponder in the coming months.
The Rise of HD... Phone Calls?
As 4K-quality video content poses challenges for network capacity, there's another (perhaps less sexy) HD technology brewing: phone calls. Voice over LTE (VoLTE) is starting to crop up in feature lists for new smartphones, but in 2015 we anticipate consumers will start to finally notice a difference in voice quality between regular phone calls and VoLTE calls. No more, "Wait, say that again." Concurrently, we'll have to wait and see how such a service - which goes from electrical signals over copper lines to IP-based data - will impact both network capacity and security.
Surprising privacy clouds will be built
We anticipate companies outside of the usual IT circles will rely on the cloud in new ways to deliver their products and services to customers. The rise of mobile payments, connected devices spawning left and right and the accompanied security considerations therein will transform vertical sectors in ways we haven't imagined yet. Following in the footsteps of NIKE, which has shifted from being an apparel company to a connected lifestyle band with its health tracking devices, or Starbucks, which has become a major driver of mobile payments and content delivery, more companies will build private clouds to deliver the services their customers want. And like any new technology, clouds have initially been built by technology leaders in high tech fields (web properties, financial services). In 2015 we will see clouds being built by all types of business, in all geographies-including some you might not expect such as, for example, oil and gas companies like Hess. In 2015, cloud building becomes a competitive advantage across industries.
The race to the bottom begins/continues
Microsoft recently announced unlimited cloud storage for Office 365 users. Amazon Web Services also continues undercutting the competition. This is just the beginning of the cloud price wars and race to the bottom for pricing. We've seen similar things in the consumer mobile and broadband markets. In 2015, cloud providers will need to find new ways to differentiate and make money to stay relevant/profitable as the price wars intensify.
SDN in 2015
We're going to start seeing new uses of software-defined networking as the market and technology mature and more companies realize its value. One of Juniper's studies earlier this year found an aggressive appetite to adopt SDN. And, sure, on the surface it's great for simpler network management and cost-reduction but what will companies really do with it? A key use will be that SDN (coupled with analytics) provides the agility to provision demanded services before they're asked for rather than waiting until customers ask.
An Ecosystem of Cloud Connected Devices Hits the Enterprise
When you think of the "Internet of Things," what comes to mind? An egg carton that texts you when it's out of eggs? A lighting system controlled by mood-sensing switches? Probably - since those quirky uses have grabbed headlines. But in 2015, expect to see IoT creep into the halls of enterprises - and it's because everything will finally start to talk to each other. Right now, communications protocols vary too widely for the ecosystem of connected devices to flourish. But as devices talk more with each other, expect to see a huge uptick in the amount of data generated in general. Ipso facto, more data equals more insight. Service providers will need network infrastructures capable of handling the surge in data - and the ability to draw actionable business insight.
Product co-creation comes to networking: new ideas require new thinking
For as long as networks have been around, the development and sale of networking products has been more or less a one-way street: equipment vendors develop products - routers, switches, etc. - and sell them to enterprises and service providers. Enterprises and service providers bought them because they had to. In 2015 this will change. More large companies and service providers will become more vocal about the features and prices of the products they buy for their networks. For example, AT&T's Domain 2.0 initiative and InterCloud Systems (TTM), are partnerships with the goal of co-creation. Expect to see more products in 2015 co-created between partners, customers and network equipment makers, as customers wield more influence in the development of the modern network.
The Black Market Continues to Grow and Mature
According to a study from the RAND Corporation and Juniper Networks, hacker black markets have reached a significant level of maturity. In 2015, we are likely to see the continued expansion and maturity of hacker black markets. Fuelled by the continued vulnerability of point of sale systems and an influx of cloud services, the market opportunity for economically motivated attackers will continue to grow.
We are likely to see new hacking tools and exploit kits being developed to exploit vulnerabilities in computer systems. Further, despite crackdowns on darkweb sites like Silk Road by the FBI and other law enforcement, new markets will quickly open to take their place to meet the significant demand for stolen records and other illicit goods. There will likely continue to be a significant supply of credit card and other online credentials being sold on the black market driven by mega breaches at major cloud providers and retailers.
Data Science Spreads to Security
With the continued focus of the industry on providing better and more actionable threat intelligence, we are likely to see a rise in demand of data scientists in security. While already in high demand in other fields, the need for data scientists capable of making more accurate and effective colorations of threat data will increase. The companies capable of best applying data science to security will find competitive differentiation in the marketplace by being able to deliver more reliable and useful intelligence about attacks and attackers.
Securing an Ecosystem of Connected Devices
As more devices are connected to the internet, we are likely to see attackers follow as the potential for attacks to increases. The Internet of Everything means that many companies that haven't traditionally had to worry about software security now need be responsible for it. The potential consequences could be significant. The ability for an attacker to remotely control medical devices, cars, thermostats and other physical systems could create a significant threat to society. It will be incumbent on companies developing these technologies to focus on security in the development process, as well as develop better ways to quickly patch systems when problems are found. If not, the potential for software hacks impacting critical physical environments and systems will increase significantly.
The virtual world is redefining the channel
"Everything as a service" means new things for how technology is being sold. Previously, before the rise of the cloud, technology and channel partners had a physical product to sell. You could hold it in your hand. Now, whether it's a router or some other service, it's being sold through the cloud as a subscription. That means new considerations - all the way up to the c-suite. In 2015, we expect to see companies and sales organisations continuing to grapple with a few things:
- Partners used to get paid up front. Now, with annuity payments for software subscriptions, they'll need help through a financial bridge of sorts.
- The sales culture is very different. With a basic knowledge of math, commissions on physical products are easy to figure out. But now, how will you chose to compensate on an annuity? A percentage up-front? Percentage ongoing?
- How you're selling changes. IT is spreading beyond the closets of networking gear. Selling a cloud-based model requires a different sales cycle, different culture and different people. Expect in 2015 for the c-suite to become even more ingrained in technology purchasing decisions.
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.