Many firms inadequately armed against cyber threats

By Maurice Garvey

THE majority of organisations feel they are not equipped to deal with emerging cyber threats, according to research by specialist IT solutions distributor, DataSolutions.

Clondalkin-based IT distributor DataSolutions commissioned a survey of 111 Irish IT decision-makers in July.

Three quarters of Irish firms upped cybersecurity after WannaCry DataSolutions survey 1

Michael O'Hara (Managing Director, DataSolutions) and David Keating (Security Specialist)

It found 63 per cent of respondents feel their organisations are not equipped to deal with all emerging threats, despite most firms adopting a formal cyber-defence strategy.

Human error is considered the greatest threat facing Irish businesses.

While more than three-quarters (76 per cent) expect to increase their cyber-security spend in 2018, more than half of the respondents still feel there is insufficient budget in their organisation for new security infrastructure.

The survey found that 57 per cent of respondents considered phishing attacks – malicious emails – to be a serious security threat, followed by malware (54 per cent) and ransomware (52 per cent).

Close to 20 per cent of Irish businesses have been held to ransom by a hacker, but the vast majority (78 per cent) claim they would never pay it.

David Keating, Security Specialist at DataSolutions, said: “Simply throwing more money at cyber security is not the answer to these new challenges.

"Organisations must adopt a strategic and targeted approach to effectively combat threats.

"Investing in current cyber-security technology is a logical step for many, although one-in-five IT professionals admit to using out-dated technology.”

He added, “Irish businesses are starting to take a more mature approach to security and accept that it is very likely they will be hit by an emerging threat.

"Hackers are always going to be one step ahead, so it is essential that companies have the right defence technology in place.”

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