BizTech recently published two articles on tech trends in store for SMBs and cybersecurity threats that will most likely surface in 2019. We are including here a summary of those articles along with additional information on what 2019 might bring for the SMB’s relation to technology. Raymond Boggs, VP of small and medium business research at IDC offered insight for the BizTech articles.

The use of data and analytics in technology is predicted to be a big influence for SMBs in 2019. It will enable businesses to make decisions based on analytics. Such technology will allow businesses to tap vendor specific products and identify the best customers based on trends that could extend to other customers.

Self-serve cloud service is also expected to pick up for SMBs in 2019. Many SMBs are looking to expand their use of the cloud. Just as consumers are used to a self-service economy, especially when using companies such as Amazon, businesses might be influenced by this trend.

Of course, cloud cybersecurity is a big concern. It is estimated that cyber crime will reach a $2 trillion amount this year, according to the Better Business Bureau. Cyber criminals keep finding the resources to get around security systems in place, attacking servers and operating systems. New technology will make AI (artificial intelligence) an integral part of security programs, monitoring devices and user behavior to flag anything suspicious.

SMBs are going to need to keep moving forward and to stay up to date with their technology. As Boggs states in the BizTech article, “When buying a solution and making an initial investment, small businesses need to weigh the immediate impact against the larger technology trajectory and how the business will compete in the future digital economy of 2020 and beyond.” Businesses need to think on a large scale, incorporating technologies relating to their customers or clients and internally. Secure remote technology, for example, is more important than ever for a company’s work force.

In addition to trends for business, there are also prominent cyber threats for 2019. Keep up to date on current ransomware and malware and stay aware of threats. (See our blog posts on the latest cyber threats and how to stay safe.)

Though AI will be more prominent this year and beyond, it also poses threats. AI based malware can be invasive, where criminals can use voice technologies to change commands or words in causing crimes. On the bright side, next-gen cybersecurity tools can use AI to monitor devices and behavior.

One form of AI, the voice controlled digital assistant, could be vulnerable to cyber crime. Criminals could write a code to attack the device and the digital assistant. This could lead to stolen data and malicious activity, such as unlocking doors and connecting to servers via voice commands.

Cloud security is also a critical concern. There will be more automation that can help to continuously monitor cloud security and automatically fix problems, for example, with cloud based email. Many of these methods are already in place.

Though these threats are ominous, keeping up with security is key. Make sure your business has the right technology professionals who can monitor and stay on top of current trends in technology and security. Even if you are not technology savvy, stay on top of best practices to add another level to your business security.

Stay safe and feel free to contact us with any questions!