The cybersecurity landscape changes on a daily basis, perhaps even hourly. New technologies are created, and innovations enter our homes, our workplaces, even our pockets. More importantly, cybercriminals launch new threats to our security every day, meaning it’s nearly impossible to stay ahead of them.

Reportedly, two of the top trends this year will be artificial intelligence and continued innovation on the Internet of Things. AI advancements have reached the consumer market, but tend to have more industrial applications; that may change significantly this year as more devices like Amazon’s Echo and Google Home “learn” from their users, and new compatible devices connect to those “always listening, always learning” machines.

On the business front, one legal firm predicts that this will be the year when industry regulators raise the bar on the standards that help protect the public in the event of a data breach. The EU has already drafted and voted into practice General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) that go into effect this year, and it’s foreseeable that other governments at both state and federal levels may follow suit.

Interestingly, one industry watcher thinks 2018 will be the year of customization, meaning that consumers and businesses will seek out security protocols that are not “one size fits all,” but rather are tailor-made to the user. As such, this may result in a bloom of startups that not only provide top-notch security solutions but can also do it for every budget or specific need.

But there’s a facet to cybersecurity that cannot remain overlooked: who is a cybersecurity leader? It’s not just the CEO of an antivirus software company or the go-to source for news on the latest hacking event or ransomware attack. There are levels of this type of leadership, starting with your own home. You are the cybersecurity leader of the devices in your possession, and if you use any connected device in the workplace, you’re a cybersecurity leader there as well. The IT team, the C-Suite executives, the janitor who comes in at night and notices a strange screen running on one of the computers…these are all cybersecurity leaders to some extent.

This may be the year when we all recognize our role in data protection and preventing cyberattacks, which is the best prediction for the security of them all.

Contact the Identity Theft Resource Center for toll-free, no-cost assistance at (888) 400-5530. For on-the-go assistance, check out the free ID Theft Help App from ITRC.