Throughout history, there have been periods of technological innovation, leading to booms in productivity and followed by periods of increased economic return and operational efficiency. As time passes, the incremental benefits from the now “old” technology begin to plateau, and the cycle plays itself out again.
When we think of the “Industrial Revolution,” we need to focus on the four major inflection points of industry and the catalyst technology that propelled (in some cases, literally) the world’s economies forward.
The advent of the steam engine in the 18th century was at the foundation of the First Industrial Revolution. This technology led to the first mechanization of production and drove social change as society became more urbanized.
The Second Industrial Revolution came as a result of electricity and other scientific advances that carried us to mass production, up until the 1950s.
During the late 1900s, the Third Industrial Revolution came online, literally, with the emergence of computers and digital technology. With Moore’s Law as an underpinning, the world saw a massive expansion in automation in manufacturing, and the disruption of most industries, especially banking, energy, and communications.
We currently find ourselves in the very early days of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. This revolution builds upon the third and blurs the boundaries of the physical, digital, and biological worlds. It is an amalgamation of advances in artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, the Internet of Things (IoT), 3D printing, genetic engineering, quantum computing, and other technologies. The Fourth Industrial Revolution is creating transformative changes in the way we live and massively disrupting almost every business sector.
A New Boom on the Way
As we straddle the Third Industrial Revolution with its massive efficiencies across the digital spectrum and the Fourth Industrial Revolution with the even broader connection of new and existing technologies, we are globally more connected than ever. While these gains are welcome and mostly for good, we must recognize that cybersecurity is more important than ever. As systems become ever more connected, the methods of the past are not enough for the future.
One of the problems in all this is that there will be 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs globally by 2021. Meanwhile, hackers are pressing attacks nearly every 39 seconds, approximately 2,244 times a day.
On top of the mainstream cyberattacks brought on by the Third Industrial Revolution, like ransomware, phishing, and denial of service attacks, we are starting to see Fourth Industrial Revolution attacks like “deepfakes.” This type of attack uses synthetic media where a person in an existing video or image is replaced with someone else’s likeness utilizing a kind of neural network, called an autoencoder. Attack possibilities include deepfake phishing campaigns, attempts to influence elections or public opinion, and fraud through synthetic identities.
The Biggest Upside of Cybersecurity
Statista forecasts there will be over 75.44 billion connected devices by 2025, more than double the 30.73 billion in 2020. In a massively connected global network, the attack surface is incredibly broad, and endpoints must be protected to prevent widespread attack penetration. The term Endpoint Threat Detection and Response (ETDR) was first defined in 2013, to define “the tools primarily focused on detecting and investigating suspicious activities (and traces of such) other problems on hosts/endpoints.” Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) is a new category of solutions that is sometimes likened to Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) in terms of overall capabilities to monitor and respond to endpoint threats continuously.
How to Take Advantage of the EDR Boom
EDR technology helps organizations bridge the cybersecurity gap between the Third and Fourth Industrial Revolution by using machine learning and behavioral models to analyze endpoint data and uncover malicious activity to stop all types of attacks before they reach critical systems.
EDR software promises to combine visibility, threat detection, and response across all your endpoints. However, EDR capability can be challenging, and it’s not something you simply buy off the shelf and deploy.
An organization has three ways to implement EDR in their security overlay:
- Do it in house. This may require significant resources and a large team
- Use a managed security services provider (MSSP) and outsource the effort
- Use managed endpoint detection and response (MDR), a new type of service focused on helping organizations improve their threat detection and response capability
Implementing EDR into a security program is not a small undertaking, and it can be challenging to find the best path forward. Deciding what you can do internally verse outsourcing is a decision not to be taken lightly. Start with a pragmatic assessment of your current program and capabilities to identify constraints and work to fill the gap with third party support.