Stronger security and greater attacks are the predicted trends for next year.
As part of a look forward to 2009 by Fortinet, the company believes that there will be a greater need to secure networks while economising on cost and protecting against stronger malware.
It claimed that efficiency will be the new technology must-have for 2009 as companies look to integrate their appliances due to financial constraints. Network functionalities such as WAN optimisation and SSL inspection will be more prevalent as ‘superset' security solutions become more popular.
Fortinet also believes that companies will be forced to incorporate information security measures as part of their overall network security strategy following high profile data breaches over the course of 2008.
In malware, it claimed that premeditated and targeted attacks will rise with specific goals and attacks targeted towards enterprise and governments. It also believes that next generation online gaming and virtual worlds will be attacked, with a sharp increase in Trojans targeting account information.
Vulnerabilities in Web 2.0 will multiply as the popularity of social networking sites and in-the-cloud computing will lead cyber criminals to target networks, as employees traverse in and out of the network.
As a result, companies will find a greater need to employ web application firewalls and data leakage prevention mechanisms to avoid having employees bring tainted data into the corporate network and from the inadvertent release of proprietary information.
The next threat will be with 3G, according to Fortinet, as there will be greater opportunity for virus infections and attacks, which requires a focused approach to secure the millions of handheld mobile devices in operation today. Following Google's recent Android OS vulnerability, Fortinet believes that real-time access to high-quality audio/video transmission and greater network capacity will lead to criminal opportunities.
On a positive note, the company believes that there will be more law activity in 2009 after law enforcement mounted an aggressive effort in 2008 in bringing malware authors and criminal organisations to justice.
Fortinet claimed that this ‘will be a slow process, which will require an unprecedented effort between various bodies from law enforcement to effectively address issues in cyber security.'