VMware Releases Cybersecurity Threat Survey Report Detailing Increased Attack Volume and Breach Levels in the United StatesDate : 14 Jul 2020
Global COVID-19 surge adding new elements to threat environment
The research found an increase in both cyberattack volume and breaches during the past 12 months in the
Data for the report was compiled in March and
Key survey findings from
- 92% said attack volumes have increased in the last 12 months, the survey found.
- 97% said their business has suffered a security breach in the last 12 months. The average organization said they experienced 2.70 breaches during that time, the survey found.
- 84% said attacks have become more sophisticated, the survey found.
- 95% said they plan to increase cyber defense spending in the coming year.
- OS vulnerabilities are the leading cause of breaches, according to the survey, followed by web application attacks and ransomware.
- US companies said they are using an average of 9 different security technologies to manage their security program, the survey found.
Common breach causes in
The most common cause of breaches in the
Complex multi-technology environments
US cybersecurity professionals said they are using an average of more than nine different tools or consoles to manage their cyber defense program, the survey found. This indicates a security environment that has evolved reactively as security tools have been adopted to tackle emerging threats.
Said McElroy: “Siloed, hard-to-manage environments hand the advantage to attackers from the start. Evidence shows that attackers have the upper hand when security is not an intrinsic feature of the environment. As the cyber threat landscape reaches saturation, it is time for rationalization, strategic thinking and clarity over security deployment.”
Supplemental COVID-19 survey in
The latest research was supplemented with a survey on the impact COVID-19 has had on the attack landscape1. According to the supplemental survey of more than 1,000 respondents from the
Key findings from the supplemental
- 89% said they have been targeted by COVID-19-related malware.
- Inability to institute multifactor authentication (MFA) was reported as the biggest security threat to businesses during COVID-19, the survey found.
- 83% reported gaps in disaster planning around communications with external parties including customers, prospects, and partners.
Said McElroy: “The global situation with COVID-19 has put the spotlight on business resilience and disaster recovery planning. Those organizations that have delayed implementing multi-factor authentication appear to be facing challenges, as 32% of
- 83% of respondents reported gaps in recovery planning, ranging from slight to severe.
- 83% said they had uncovered gaps in IT operations.
- 84% said they encountered problems around enabling a remote workforce.
- 83% said they’ve experienced challenges communicating with employees
- 83% said they had experienced difficulty communicating with external parties.
- 63% said the situation uncovered gaps around visibility into cybersecurity threats.
Said McElroy: “These figures indicate that the surveyed CISOs may be facing difficulty in a number of areas when answering the demands placed on them by the COVID-19 situation.”
Risks directly related to COVID-19 have also quickly emerged, the survey found. This includes rises in COVID-19 malware which was seen by 89% of
Said McElroy: “The 2020 survey results suggest that security teams must be working in tandem with business leaders to shift the balance of power from attackers to defenders. We must also collaborate with IT teams and work to remove the complexity that’s weighing down the current model. By building security intrinsically into the fabric of the enterprise – across applications, clouds and devices – teams can significantly reduce the attack surface, gain greater visibility into threats, and understand where security vulnerabilities exist.”
Read the full executive summary here.
About VMware’s Intrinsic Security Strategy
Security sprawl – too many products, agents, and interfaces deployed across an organization – has created complexity for security management, opening organizations to significant risk. Most security innovation over the past decade has focused on identifying and reacting to individual attacks. Little innovation has focused on hardening infrastructure itself to make it more secure or using the infrastructure to better protect an organization.
The way forward is an intrinsic security approach that combines detecting and responding to threats, in addition to hardening infrastructure.
Main Survey Methodology
COVID-19 Survey Methodology
1 COVID-19 survey methodology: The COVID-19 survey was conducted by Opinion Matters in March and