What's New in IT and Cybersecurity

With 2020 finally coming to a close, many of us are issuing a sign of relief. With a New Year comes renewed hope. That hope includes new internet technology and cybersecurity to protect business data. ORAM Corporate Advisors looks ahead at what’s new in IT and cybersecurity for 2021 that can help organizations in every industry move confidently ahead into a new decade while ensuring business continuity despite what the future holds.

Reliable, Remote Operations

When it comes to pandemics, natural disasters, or even workplace violence, businesses need to ensure continuity in the face of unexpected events. In 2020, the world witnessed how critical reliable, remote operations were as office buildings shuttered and a huge number of people began working from home. Companies realized the need for employees, partners, and clients to be able to access data at any time from anywhere. This meant making digital access the top priority and organizational capabilities totally seamless online.

While the remote workforce trend began to gain momentum prior to 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic gave it a definitive bump. According to review42.com, 4.7 million people were already working remotely from home prior to the pandemic and 88 percent of organizations worldwide suggested or mandated that their workforce go remote once the pandemic was declared. Of remote employees, 77 percent reported that they are more productive working from home, 53 percent of U.S. telecommuters view flexible scheduling as the top benefit and U.S companies that allow employees to work remotely experience a 25 percent lower employee turnover rate than those that don’t allow it. By 2028, 73 percent of teams will have remote workers, according to Upwork.

Total Experience

When it comes to technology, the new wave is for companies to utilize technology that is usable by everyone, not just the tech-literate. It’s all about technology that is super user-friendly for everyone who interacts with it from employees to business partners and customers. Technology should provide a consistently efficient, effective, simple customer experience across platforms from a company’s website to its apps. The total experience, as this idea has come to be known, connects a variety of users to accommodate everyone, positively transforming business outcomes as a result.

Comprehensive Cybersecurity

Traditional data security focused on perimeter defense and securing data within a physical space. This is no longer sufficient with advancements in technology from email and cloud computing to digital data sharing. Modern cybersecurity must encompass a distributed approach that is both physical and digital. Today’s cybersecurity must be scalable so it can grow easily with your company’s needs, flexible so it can be used when and how it is needed without obstacles, and is reliable day and night, regardless of platform, hardware, and software being utilized.

The term cybersecurity layers have been used to describe the distributed security that is defined around a person, thing, or company’s data. Cybersecurity layers enable a modular, preventative, and defensive 360-degree approach to data security.

Next-Generation Firewalls

Firewall technology has evolved from the traditional firewall that is ubiquitous with business. Next-generation firewalls combine traditional firewall protection with upgrades including network device filtering functions such as an application firewall that uses deep packets inspection (DPI), intrusion prevention systems (IPS), and TLS/SSL encrypted traffic inspection. Deep packet inspection weeds out any non-compliant emails, spam, viruses, and other intrusive data at an inspection point before it enters a network. Intrusion prevention systems examine network traffic to detect and prevent vulnerability exploits while TSS/SSL encrypted traffic inspection intercepts TSS/SSL internet communications between a client and server to stop malicious content that may be hidden from entering a system.

Other advancements in next-generation firewalls include web filtering is included to keep employees from visiting suspicious or dangerous websites, bandwidth management, antivirus inspection, and third-party identity management integration (for example, Active Directory or LDAP) to allow for business partners to achieve access to necessary data.

Telehealth & MedTech

While advancements were already on the way in telehealth and medical technology, the pandemic forced the world to hit the fast-forward button. The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced health care providers using “remote communications technologies” that “may not fully comply with the requirements of HIPAA rules” would not be penalized for non-compliance given the pandemic. Instead, the use of video-streaming platforms such as Zoom would be permitted.

Further, companies such as CrowdOptic have provided hospitals and learning institutions with technology to allow remote attendees to stream into surgeries in real-time. Imagine medical students, doctors, and trainers streaming in to watch, learn, and confer as a surgery occurs. Even reputable colleges such as Stanford University’s Medical School has instituted such technology to keep people learning and working through the pandemic.

For more information on new internet technology and cybersecurity to help your business achieve its goals, contact ORAM Corporate Advisors at (617) 933-5060.