5 Cyberattack Statistics That Will Make You Re-Evaluate the Importance of Cybersecurity

Technology and our interconnected global economy have brought seemingly endless new ways to connect, work, and play. However, these advances have also given rise to a new type of criminal: those with a combination of persistence, technical skill, and malicious intent looking for victims to breach for financial gain.

Unfortunately, this threat is only getting more dire. Eighty percent of firms saw an increase in cyberattacks in 2020, with a 600 percent increase in phishing attempts from February to August 2020. This past year also saw a range of broad, sophisticated attacks that have caught the attention of even the most casual of observers.

As a security professional, you are likely always concerned about the threat of cyberattack. Here are five statistics sure to get the attention of decision makers who need to understand the importance of cybersecurity.

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1. The Average Cost of Cyberattacks Is at Least Six Figures

Any disruption to your business is sure to affect your bottom line, but cyberattacks are increasingly forcing businesses to take big financial hits. In fact, in 2018, if you consolidate the cost of cleanup, forensics, repairs, and damages, cyberattacks from malware cost about $2.6 million. Ransomware, which can encrypt your data until a payment is made to release the information, is costing businesses almost $650,000 per attack. Since 2014, average data breach costs have increased 10 percent.

2. 30% of Employees Are Involved in Data Breaches

Whether they have malicious intentions or not, your own employees are involved in data breaches more often than you may think. According to one study, 30 percent of data breaches involved insiders. These insiders might enable an attack accidentally by clicking a link, utilizing weak credentials, or leaving sensitive data unattended—and some knowingly leak information.

In these cases, a combination of employee awareness, training, and security automation and data loss prevention tools can help to stop data breaches before they start.

3. Data Breaches Often Span Hundreds of Days

The thought of being a victim to a data breach is scary enough on its own. But it is made even worse by the fact that it can take as much as 300 days to detect and contain such a breach.

All breaches are different, but breach containment took an average of 280 days in 2020, up from 271 in 2016. This shows not only the sophistication of cyberthreats today but also the need for security products to constantly monitor for abnormal network activity.

Arm your business against cyberthreats when you download The Ultimate Guide to Performing a Cybersecurity Risk Assessment on Your Business →

4. 77% of Companies Do Not Have an Incident Response Plan

Despite all of the scary headlines, eye-catching reports, and large amounts of resources spent on technology every year, most businesses do not have an incident response plan ready in case they fall victim to a cyberattack. One IBM study found that 77 percent of respondents to their survey indicated that they did not have a cybersecurity-focused incident response plan in place.

Having a plan ready not only helps your team to respond in a coordinated manner, but it can also help to reduce the length and cost of any data breach. The same IBM study noted that when an organization responds to an attack within 30 days, it can save $1 million or more in breach-related costs.

5. 86% of Attacks Are Financially Motivated

Like most criminals, cybercriminals are increasingly in it for the money. With more people connected to the internet and more business being conducted remotely, cybercriminals see opportunities to cash in.

According to one study, 86 percent of cyberattacks are motivated by financial gain, up from 71 percent in 2019. More than $3.5 billion was reportedly lost in 2019, and although final numbers for 2020 are not yet available, the amount businesses lost last year is sure to be at least as staggering.

Take the Next Step

Fortunately, although the deck is stacked against the average business, your company does not have to be a statistic. By partnering with Axians, you will have access to industry experts ready on day one to identify, implement, and continuously improve your cybersecurity program, no matter the scope or scale of your business.

Ready to learn more? Contact the team at Axians to schedule a free consultation.