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6 Cybersecurity Advancements We Owe to COVID-19

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Learn about 6 cybersecurity advancements that occurred in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cybersecurity is an ever-evolving field, and now is an excellent time to look at how it will improve during the second half of this year. Here are six things for businesses and cybersecurity professionals to anticipate:

1.Lasting Security Changes Due to Learnings During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic elevated cybersecurity risks as a growing number of people worked from home and often did so over insecure networks. However, a recent study from Bitdefender showed many IT professionals will be doing things differently. They intend to make long-term changes after the coronavirus.

For example, 31% said they would maintain 24/7 IT support. Doing that could make it easier for a person to get help with a cybersecurity question or advice about a suspicious email. The same 31% also wanted to increase the number of IT security training sessions for employees.

These statistics indicate that although COVID-19 caused disastrous circumstances for many people, it will also facilitate advancements in cybersecurity that persist through this year and beyond. (Read also: The Truth About Cybersecurity.)

2. User-Friendly, Multifunctional Cybersecurity Gadget

Many everyday individuals know about cybersecurity risks and want to address them. The problem is that taking such actions seems too daunting, especially to non-tech savvy internet users.

A successfully funded device on Kickstarter called the Pangolin aims to address that matter and support one of the broader cybersecurity trends of 2020 — keeping a home or small business network secure. The Pangolin is an adapter that plugs into a router and gets power from the nearest wall outlet. The device blocks website trackers and continually evolves to protect against new cybersecurity threats and alert users to abnormal activity.


3. DoD Contractors Will Use the CMMC Framework

The U.S. Department of Defense (Dod) recently launched a program called the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC). It's a progressive framework that indicates an organization's current security posture.

The DoD has not yet ironed out all the details about minimum certification requirements and other things current and aspiring government contractors need to know. However, sources indicate that some of the DoD's requests for proposals will include CMMC certification requirements.

Contractors will soon begin seeing how the CMMC applies to their work and their ability to win bids. Many of them will likely become more motivated to enhance their cybersecurity efforts, especially since doing so could make them more likely to secure government agreements for delivered services. (Read also: AI in the Army: How Virtual Assistants Will Impact US Army Ranks.)

4. New Data Privacy Rules Spurred by COVID-19

Medical experts say contact tracing is an essential part of stopping the spread of the coronavirus in the community. Many assert that smartphone appscould speed the efforts to get in touch with exposed persons and encourage them to self-isolate.

Many people worry that such apps could compromise privacy. Thus, some of the cybersecurity advancements still to come this year will likely include new regulations affecting how those applications work and what information they gather from users. (Read also: New Big Data Economy: What Are the Privacy Issues?)

The Exposure Notification Privacy Act is one of the most recent bipartisan legislation efforts on the table. It makes using a contact tracing app voluntary and gives consumers control over their data. Lawmakers announced two previous related attempts at increasing privacy, as well. People should stay abreast of the matter to see if any of these laws pass. Having relevant conversations could encourage advancements in cybersecurity.

5. Continued Collaborations to Secure Telehealth Platforms

Forrester researchers expect telehealth visits in the U.S. to surpass 1 billion appointments this year. They believe as many as 900 million will be COVID-19-related.

There's no better time than now for people to put their heads together and make telemedicine platforms more secure. That's happening through an initiative from The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence (NCCoE). The project's goal is to develop a practical solution to improve telehealth platforms and remote monitoring.

The project is currently moving into the build phase after representatives have chosen several industry partners and experts. Anyone who searches for a keyword phrase like "cybersecurity trends" will undoubtedly find coverage of health-related developments. This particular effort may not conclude this year, but people can expect to see progress made on it. (Read also: The Growing Cybersecurity War on the Healthcare Industry.)

6. Under-Display Biometrics on the Apple iPhone 12

Sources say that Apple's new iPhone 12 could arrive as early as September. It should become an option before the end of the year unless the brand encounters significant production issues.

People are already curious about the smartphone's design and features. Biometric security is one of the prevalent themes popping up in the rumor mill. Some possibilities revealed in leaks include an optical fingerprint sensor placed under the phone's display.

Even if that design choice pans out, analysts expect the phone to still have Face ID for people who want to use it. A Forbes contributor recently pointed out that offering various biometrics on the phone would prove a smart decision. If people wear masks to stay safe from the pandemic, they could not depend on Face ID to work properly.

An Exciting Six Months of Cybersecurity Advancements

This list shows why people still have plenty of reasons to feel hopeful about internet security enhancements in the second half of the year. These certainly aren't the only events to watch for, but they're among the notable developments.


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Devin Partida is the Editor-in-Chief for, and has had her freelance work featured in the official CES magazine, as well as various other tech publications. When she isn't writing about the latest tech, gadgets or cybersecurity trends, you can find her biking around the Golden Gate Bridge. To view Devin's full professional portfolio, please visit this page.