Businesses overconfident about cyber security

Recent research from Deloitte has highlighted that firms in technology, media and telecommunications are confident that they are safe from cyber attacks and data security breaches.

The research revealed that 88 percent of companies surveyed indicated that they did not think they were vulnerable to external cyber threats.

Despite this confidence, 74 percent voiced concerns over third party breaches, and 70 percent indicated that employee mistakes were a major threat, with lack of security awareness being cited as a major vulnerability. Only 48 percent of companies, however, offered security-related training.

Matt Middleton-Leal, regional director, UK & Ireland at Cyber-Ark has made the following comments:

This research highlights one of the major pitfalls businesses face when it comes to information security – the attitude that breaches and cyber-attacks won’t happen to them. Cyber-attacks continue to become more and more sinister and targeted in order to gain access to valuable business information, and this lack of understanding is extremely dangerous when it comes to protecting companies.

With 70 percent of respondents stating that lack of employee awareness is a major issue when it comes to security, concerns are automatically raised around the safeguarding of privileged accounts – a proven sweet spot for cyber-attackers – as well as the implementation of policies such as BYOD and the use of personal software.

Today’s organisations need to work on the premise that the bad guys are already through the front door and as such, employees, particularly those who have access to privileged accounts, must receive regular and appropriate training to build awareness of the security risks surrounding technology.

The consequences of suffering a data breach are higher than ever before – with the recent spate of high-profile victims of data breaches evidencing the potentially disastrous consequences of a hack. Businesses therefore need to be more forward thinking, taking steps upfront which will not only ensure compliance, but will also guarantee that business critical information will be safe from internal and external threats.

It’s time for the IT department to move away from the daily grind of fire fighting, and focus how to better protect the enterprise from tomorrow’s threats.

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