The changing security landscape of 2015

  • Smart devices can be more difficult for IT to manage.

  • Mobile’s key differences make it a lucrative target for attacks.

  • Smartphones have led the charge in biometric security.

Every year we use more devices, and the steps we have to take to make sure they’re all secure from viruses, malware, and hackers becomes increasingly complex. As the Digital Lifestyle Expert™, each year I travel to large technology conferences, including the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and South by Southwest (SXSW), as well as to events around the world, to check out the latest in what’s happening in technology.

Based on my findings, here are three mobile security predictions that companies should look for in 2015.

Mobile threats continue to grow

With every release, desktop operating systems are becoming increasingly secure, and IT departments around the world are continuing to keep intruders out of their networks using tried and true methods. However, IT has a much more difficult time managing the smart devices we carry with us all the time and use so much for work.

“Mobile” has a few key differences from “desktop” that make it a lucrative target for attacks. For one, data is stored not just on mobile devices but also in a variety of cloud services  with different logins often controlled by a phone’s user. For another, with a variety of operating systems on mobile, and software updates that are out of your company’s control, attacks are often easier to craft around known vulnerabilities that can’t be patched as quickly as they can on desktop.

The Internet of Things

Looking beyond the desktop and our mobile devices, the number of Internet-connected devices is growing beyond our wildest dreams. In the home, smart thermostats and refrigerators are helping us to live better than ever, while companies are able to do more by deploying smart devices in every category, from IP cameras to medical equipment!

But when you think about these Internet-connected devices, with estimates that we’ll have more than 40 billion by 2020 according to Forbes, you realize the scope of the security nightmare we’re creating for ourselves. As companies and families deploy more smart devices in their businesses and homes, we’ll also be wearing smarter watches and fitness devices. Will all of them receive timely security updates? What will be the impact of security breaches on smart devices?

Those who want to stay ahead in the security landscape need to start planning now, before security becomes a problem.

Passwords are out, and biometrics are in

Over the past few years, smartphones have led the way in biometric security, a technology that only allows a certain person with the correct biometric data into that person’s private information. Unlocking your smartphone with your fingerprint is simple and easy, and today millions are using biometrics for increased security and peace of mind.

As people become more comfortable using biometrics to unlock their devices, companies are getting added security for many of their mobile devices. The smartest companies will take advantage of this change in people’s habits to more widely deploy biometric security where necessary. 2015 will be a banner year for migration towards more biometric-based security practices.

Learn more about network security services from AT&T. 


Mario Armstrong, Digital Lifestyle Expert, is an Emmy Award winning tech commentator for the TODAY show, CNN, HLN and Fuse. An entrepreneur by nature, Mario made his passion his career by quitting his day job and founding Mario Armstrong Media. Follow Mario at@MarioArmstrong. AT&T has sponsored this blog post.


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