As 2021 comes to a close, it’s officially time to look forward to all of the possibilities that 2022 has to offer in the Federal IT space. Meritalk asked several industry experts to discuss what their Federal IT predictions are for the new year.
These experts include –
- Matt Marsden, Vice President for Federal Technical Account Management at Tanium
- PK Kirner, CTO and Founder of Illumio and Andrew Rubin, CEO of Illumio
- Rick Rosenburg, Vice President and General Manager, Rackspace Government Solutions, Rackspace Technology
- Mike Wiseman, VP for the Public Sector at Pure Storage
- Patrick Perry, Director of Emerging Technology, Zscaler and Danny Connelly, CISO Americas, Zscaler
Ransomware attacks were immensely prevalent in 2021. Illumio’s Kirner told Meritalk that there will be a lot more conversation surrounding ransomware in 2022. “In 2021, the big conversation was around ransomware payments, and whether or not organizations should pay up if or when they – inevitably – fall victim to a cyberattack,” he added.
“The Federal government has advised against paying bad actors when they fall prey to a ransomware attack, but the lack of more stringent safeguards and solutions will mean agencies will have few choices,” said Tanium’s Matt Marsden. “In 2022, agencies must find ways to better defend and improve their posture, such as practicing good cyber hygiene and having certainty about what is in their environment, protecting their sensitive data and enforcing their device compliance in an automated way, with speed and at scale.”
“We will continue to see Federal agencies shift from on-prem/network centric (legacy) security models to cloud delivered cyber security solutions and embrace the flexibilities provided by TIC 3.0,” said Zscaler’s Danny Connelly.
“2022 will be all about ransomware … again. All crimes, including ransomware attacks, are done for one of two reasons: one, as a political statement, or two, for money,” said Illumio’s Rubin. “In 2021, we saw that ransomware can be both wildly successful and devastating (i.e., the attacks on Colonial Pipeline and Kaseya), in part because adversaries found a way to be highly efficient in their attacks – they can keep costs low and take advantage of a repeatable operating model. Because this model has become so effective, malicious actors will only accelerate their focus on ransomware in 2022,” he said.
In 2022, Federal IT organizations will also be leaning more into cloud architecture. Industry experts have said that increased use of the cloud will alleviate complexity for most organizations.
“In real estate, a buyer’s broker represents the homeowner’s best interests in a real estate transaction,” said Rackspace’s Rosenburg. “The buyer’s broker model applies well to the increasingly complicated multicloud computing landscape for government agencies of all sizes and functions. It can deliver best practices in multicloud management and security, infrastructure savings, and the ability to cost-optimize workloads so the IT department and its agency customers get the best value.”
“Finally, state and local leaders must understand how to acquire, deploy, and sustain technology systems as efficiently and effectively as possible,” said Wiseman. “Containerization allows governments to create and deploy applications faster and more securely, bringing a heightened drive for data management for enterprise-level assurance,” he said. “By investing in flexible and agile solutions, organizations can maintain costs and scale up or down without massive disruption to install, while leveraging only the digital infrastructure they need at a given time.”
“In 2022, we may see more people go back to the office, creating more demand for mobile devices – but we won’t go back to permanent desktops,” offered Marsden. “This hybrid workforce creates even more work and security vulnerabilities for operations and security teams to handle. Agencies need a single platform that can help them manage all endpoints, get accurate and real-time data from those endpoints, at scale and in minutes – no matter if that endpoint is on the network, in an office, or off the network in a home office.”