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75% of organizations at significant risk: RSA


June 17, 2016  


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RSA, The Security Division of EMC, has released data demonstrating that organizations that invest in detection and response technologies, rather than perimeter-based solutions, are better poised to defend against cyber incidents.

The second annual RSA Cybersecurity Poverty Index, which compiles survey results from 878 respondents across 81 countries and more than 24 industries, attracted more than double the number of respondents as last year, and gave participants the chance to self-assess the maturity of their cybersecurity programs leveraging the NIST Cybersecurity Framework (CSF) as the measuring stick.

The report found that for the second year in a row, 75% of survey respondents have a significant cybersecurity risk exposure. Incident Response (IR) capabilities are particularly underdeveloped.

Nearly half of organizations characterized essential IR capabilities as “ad hoc” or “non-existent”, but organizations are more likely to accelerate programs to shore up cybersecurity capabilities once they have experienced a security incident that impacted the business. The survey also showed that most organizations continue to struggle to improve cybersecurity because they don’t understand how cyber risk can impact their operations.

The company said that one of the most significant changes from the 2015 survey was the increase in the number of organizations with mature cybersecurity programs. The percentage of organizations reporting advantaged capabilities – the highest category – increased by more than half over the prior Index, from 4.9% to 7.4%. But organizations’ overall perception of their cybersecurity preparedness continued to lag. The number of respondents reporting significant cybersecurity risk exposure stayed steady at nearly 75%, reflecting a growing disparity between the “haves and have-nots” in security preparedness.

“This second round of cybersecurity research provides tangible evidence that organizations of all sizes, in all industries and from all geographies feel unprepared for the threats they are facing,” said Amit Yoran, president of RSA.

“We need to change the way we are thinking about security, to focus on more than just prevention – to develop a strategy that emphasizes detection and response. Organizations need to set their agendas early, build comprehensive strategies and not wait for a breach to force them into action.”