3 in 5 companies expect to be breached in 2017

New research found that of the 50 percent who reported being breached in 2016, the average material impact to the business was $4 million.

expect breach

Vanson Bourne interviewed 600 senior IT decision-makers at organisations with at least 1,000 employees across Australia, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States.

The survey found that 35 percent of companies suffered two or more breaches in the last twelve months. Unfortunately, 3 in 5 expect to be breached in 2017, with 29 percent believing they won’t even know they were breached when it happens. As a result, survey respondents are focused on mitigating their exposure points as an organisation – with 65 percent seeing identity management as a foundation of their security strategy.

Common areas of risk that organisations need to address

Documents and files may be an enterprise’s biggest downfall in 2017: Unstructured data that lives outside of structured corporate systems and applications is a huge red flag for enterprises today – even though that data runs rampant through a typical enterprise, 41 per cent aren’t sure how to manage and protect that data from theft.

Employees need to understand – and follow – corporate security policies: Over one-third of respondents (42 percent) cite trends like BYOD and Shadow IT as great areas of risk for their organisation, yet less than half have formalised corporate security policies in place. Coupled with the risks posed by continued poor password hygiene cited by 25 percent of respondents, it’s clear that enterprises need to better outline and enforce corporate security policies, company-wide.

The contractor workforce is an enterprise blind spot: The surge in freelancers, contract workers and other third parties that make up today’s diverse workforce presents a significant challenge for organisations as it relates to managing identities and their access. 46 percent of respondents are concerned with the threat that contractors may pose to their organisation, with 70 percent admitting they don’t have full visibility into the access contractors have to corporate systems and the sensitive data that lies within.

expect breach

IT decision-makers now view identity as the center of their security program

  • 46 per cent of respondents are concerned about proper visibility into who has access to what across their corporate network, with a majority (86 percent) admitting that if their CEO’s email was hacked, they wouldn’t immediately know what their exposure points were.
  • 77 per cent of respondents now understand the importance of having strong identity governance controls in place across their organisation’s entire IT infrastructure, especially when it comes to showcasing that those controls are in place to their board of directors.
  • The benefits of an identity governance programme are clear, with respondents citing enhanced security (65 percent), a more automated and efficient organisation (64 percent), and business enablement (58 percent), as key business benefits.
  • Specific to European respondents, as the GDPR compliance deadline looms, compliance bubbled to the top as a key goal and driver behind identity governance programmes for nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of UK respondents.