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Study Shows Majority of IT Professionals Have Experienced a Data Breach

Everything-You-Need-to-Know-about-NERC-CIP-Compliance-782526-editedA new study released by McAfee* on April 30, claims that 61% of IT professionals have experienced a serious data breach.  So, for businesses who continue to bury their head in the sand thinking Cybersecurity isn’t important, read on.  The McAfee study also found that “personally identifiable information (PII) and intellectual property (IP) are now tied as the data categories with the highest potential impact to 43% of respondents. Notably, PII is of greater concern in Europe (49%), most likely due to the recent enforcement date of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). In Asia-Pacific countries, intellectual property theft is of greater concern (51%) than PII.”

Other statistics from the study show that almost half “(47 per cent) of IT pros in the UK claim to have experienced at least one data breach. Of those that did suffer a breach, 70 per cent said that public disclosure meant risking brand reputation.”  When it comes to who should be responsible for a breach, 64 per cent believe the C-suite should lose their jobs over a ‘serious enough’ breach. Interestingly, “61 percent also state that the c-level executives they work with expect more lenient security policies for themselves.”

From the data released by McAfee, we know that breaches are happening at an alarming rate, hackers are stealing sensitive personal and intellectual property, and that concern over brand reputation is high.  So, what are some of McAfee’s recommendations?

The study demonstrates the need for a cybersecurity strategy that includes implementing integrated security solutions combined with employee training and an overall culture of security throughout the organization to reduce future breaches. In other words, this isn’t just IT’s responsibility. Candace Worley, vice president and chief technical strategist at McAfee, says, “Threats have evolved and will continue to become even more sophisticated. Organizations need to augment security measures by implementing a culture of security and emphasizing that all employees are part of an organization’s security posture, not just the IT team. To stay ahead of threats, it is critical companies provide a holistic approach to improving security process by not only utilizing an integrated security solution but also practicing good security hygiene.”

While it may seem like a daunting task trying to put together the team and security strategies in place, a good Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) could be an invaluable partner to help strengthen your security posture.  An MSSP can help with implementing policies and procedures, employee training, compliance and 24x7 management of your security systems.

*The study was conducted by MSI-ACI Europe, on behalf of McAfee. Survey respondents had to have experienced a serious data breach incident sometime in their career as an IT professional. The resulting global group

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