Many British businesses have been lulled into a false sense of security when it comes to protecting their critical data from breaches, a new survey has found.
Research conducted by YouGov on behalf of Ilex International found that many firms express high levels of confidence in the defences they have in place, despite the growing threat posed by cyber criminals.
Almost a quarter of IT decision-makers surveyed (24 per cent) described themselves as very confident in their solutions, while a further 59 per cent said they were fairly confident their business is protected against data breaches.
Thierry Bettini, director of International Strategy at Ilex, said that given the fact the UK is a major economic centre and therefore a key target for cyber attacks, this level of confidence is concerning and “completely misplaced”.
He added: “The Breach Confidence Index shows that businesses have a false sense of security which could result in an increase in security breaches … If they don’t think they have been targeted yet, they will be and need to be prepared.”
A key part of this needs to be educating staff members about what they can do to minimise their risk of data breaches. By informing employees of best practice and tightening access to their most sensitive information, they can reduce their exposure to problems.
Some of the most common dangers highlighted by larger businesses included insider threats (44 per cent of respondents), employee education (42 per cent), access control (26 per cent) and BYOD or mobile access (24 per cent).
The survey also revealed many businesses may be underestimating their level of risk, as companies in the UK are not required to report security breaches, while in many cases they may not even know they have encountered one.
Almost half of decision-makers surveyed (49 per cent) said their firm had not fallen victim to a security incident, despite statistics from the government indicating as many as nine out of ten large businesses experienced a cyber breach in the last year.
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