Security ‘incidents’ hounding Philippine firms, Cisco study shows
MELBOURNE, Australia—About 67 percent of Philippine companies recently suffered from security “incidents”—primarily network breaches and outages, cyberattacks, accidental data leakage as well as insider abuse—based on a survey made by technology giant Cisco.
The share of respondents that reported such security incidents in the last two years, the time frame of the study, was higher than the global average of 62 percent, based on the research titled Security Outcomes Report, Volume 3: Achieving Security Resilience, presented by Cisco on Wednesday at the Cisco Live conference here.
This has made security resilience a top priority of business executives across the globe. In the Philippines, security resilience was identified as a high priority for 95 percent of executives.
The research showed that such security incidents had resulted in severe repercussions for the affected companies, along with the ecosystem of organizations they do business with. Information, communication and technology interruption, supply chain disruption, impaired internal operations and lasting brand damage were among the pitfalls cited.
In some cases, such incidents also resulted in loss of competitive advantage, regulatory penalties or action, response and recovery costs, inability to generate revenue and legal costs or penalties.
Cisco’s study was based on survey responses from over 4,700 participants across 26 countries.
“Technology is transforming businesses at a scale and speed never seen before. While this is creating new opportunities, it also brings with it challenges, especially on the security front. To be able to tackle these effectively, companies need the ability to anticipate, identify and withstand cyber threats, and if breached be able to rapidly recover from one. That is what building resilience is all about,” said Helen Patton, chief information security officer, Cisco Business Security Group.
“Security, after all, is a risk business. As companies don’t secure everything, everywhere, security resilience allows them to focus their security resources on the pieces of the business that add the most value to an organization, and ensure that value is protected,” she added.
In the Philippines, the leading types of security incidents identified by respondents were: network or system outages (54 percent), accidental disclosures (53 percent), distributed denial of service or DDOS attacks (52 percent) and ransomware events (52 percent).
Respondents also identified network or data breach (47 percent), malicious insider abuse (32 percent) and physical destruction (4 percent) among the most common incidents.
The findings further highlighted that the main objectives of security resilience for business leaders would be to adapt to unexpected external change events or trends, mitigate financial losses from security incidents, and continue to mature and improve security capabilities.
The study underscored that security was a human endeavor as leadership, company culture and resourcing could have a significant impact on resilience.
Globally, organizations that reported poor security support from the C-suite scored 39 percent lower than those with strong executive support.
Businesses that reported an excellent security culture scored 46 percent higher on average than those without, while companies that maintained extra internal staffing and resources to respond to incidents resulted in a 15 percent boost in resilient outcomes.
In addition, the study suggested that businesses would need to reduce complexity when transitioning from on-premise to fully cloud-based environments.
Companies whose technology infrastructures are either mostly on-premise or mostly cloud-based had the highest, and nearly identical, security resilience scores. However, businesses that are in the initial stages of transitioning from an on-premise to a hybrid cloud environment saw their scores drop between 9 and 14 percent, depending on how difficult the hybrid environments were to manage.
Globally, companies that reported implementing a mature “zero trust” model saw a 30 percent increase in resilience score compared with those that had none.
A zero-trust network relies on continued authentication and monitoring of every attempt to access a network, rather than assuming a device can be trusted.
Meanwhile, advanced extended detection and response capabilities correlated to a 45 percent increase in resilience score for organizations. Converging networking and security into a mature, cloud-delivered secure access services edge also boosted security resilience scores by 27 percent.
“The Security Outcomes Reports are a study into what works and what doesn’t in cybersecurity. The ultimate goal is to cut through the noise in the market by identifying practices that lead to more secure outcomes for defenders,” said Jeetu Patel, executive vice president and general manager of Cisco Security and Collaboration. “This year we focus on identifying the key factors that elevate the security resilience of a business to among the very best in the industry.”
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