Businesses Fail To Prepare For 1,000+ Monthly Cyber Attacks

McAfee released research finding that mid-sized organisations have seen increased attacks on their networks and systems since last year. The study found that more than half of midsize companies surveyed globally have seen more security incidents in the past year, 40 percent have had data breaches and 75 percent believe a serious data breach could put them out of business.

In its third year, the Security Paradox report quantifies the cost of proactive vs. reactive security, examines mid-sized companies’ attitudes towards security and contrasts them with security realities. More than 83 percent said they were concerned or very concerned that their business could be the target of an intentional and malicious security attack, 51 percent had actually been attacked, and 16 percent of those who were attacked took over a week to recover. Data loss was the number one consequence of the attack.

Additional research findings:

  • Thirty percent of mid-sized organisations had to manage multiple network security incidents, of which 55 pecent took up to five hours to investigate and remediate
  • Fifty-eight percent of worldwide respondents spend less than three hours per week working on, evaluating and researching IT security. Last year it was 65 percent
  • Five percent of mid-sized organisations reported that they had suffered a data loss that had cost them more than $25,000 USD. Of these 25 percent were from China, 14 percent from France and 11 percent from India
  • Forty-seven percent of all reported intellectual property losses were from EMEA-based mid-sized organisations
  • Eighty-eight percent of mid-sized organisations said they were concerned or very concerned about non-malicious/inadvertent security incidents
  • Sixty percent of worldwide mid-sized organisations admitted to knowing less than 75% of the pertinent regulatory and compliance requirements pertinent their organisation.

Research for The Security Paradox was conducted by Bloor Research on behalf of McAfee. In excess of 1,100 surveys were completed with respondents responsible for IT purchasing, management or overall ownership for governance, risk and compliance within organizations of 51 to 1,000 employees worldwide. Surveys were conducted in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. The results were compared to previous studies conducted in Europe and North America.

“Keeping up with security threats is a significant distraction from running a mid-sized business,” said Alex Thurber, senior vice president of worldwide channel operations for McAfee. “The explosion and sophistication of malware impacts mid-sized organisations who are struggling to grow their businesses against a backdrop of competitive pressures and a slow economic recovery. While the threats have grown, these companies’ resources to fight them have declined, creating a paradox. McAfee continues to focus on helping these IT teams make security a priority without making it a full time job.”

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Christian Harris is editor and publisher of BCW. Christian has over 20 years' publishing experience and in that time has contributed to most major IT magazines and Web sites in the UK. He launched BCW in 2009 as he felt there was a need for honest and personal commentary on a wide range of business computing issues. Christian has a BA (Hons) in Publishing from the London College of Communication.