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Security leaders lack resources to mitigate external threats

A new study from the Ponemon Institute has revealed that external cyber attacks costs enterprises $3.5 million a year and that a majority of security and IT professionals lack the necessary resources and infrastructure to deal with these attacks, despite the growing risks and costs associated with them.

The study and subsequent report titled “Security Beyond the Traditional Perimeter” was sponsored by the internet risk detection and mitigation company BrandProtect. The Ponemon Institute surveyed 591 respondents from 505 different companies to amass data for its study.

A number of threats were examined in the report including executive impersonations, social engineering exploits and branded attacks that occurred outside of a company's traditional security boundaries. To address these external threats, security professionals cited an ever-growing need for expertise, technology and external services.

When it came to how their companies monitored the internet and social media, a shocking seventy-nine per cent of the respondents described their security processes as non-existent. This is despite the fact that fifty-nine per cent said that the protection of intellectual property from external threats is essential or very important to their companies being sustainable. Eighteen per cent of companies had security processes that were inconsistently applied throughout the enterprise.

Ponemon's report also highlighted how many security leaders feel as though they lack the resources to do their jobs correctly. Sixty-four per cent lack the resources to monitor, sixty-two per cent lack the tools and resources needed to analyse and understand and sixty-eight per cent lack the tools and resourced need to mitigate external threats.

BrandProtect's CEO, Roberto Drassinower highlighted how difficult it currently is for security leaders to combat external threats, saying “As external threats explode in both frequency and sophistication, forward-leaning security teams are actively prioritising external threat detection, intelligence and mitigation in their objectives.

"But as evidenced in today’s report by the Ponemon Institute, the majority of enterprises still have a long way to go. Despite losing millions of dollars annually to external and branded exploits, security teams are dealing with a significant readiness gap.”

Image Credit: Tashatuvango / Shutterstock

Anthony Spadafora
After living and working in South Korea for seven years, Anthony now resides in Houston, Texas where he writes about a variety of technology topics for ITProPortal.