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UK businesses looking for more cybercrime support from government

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Research has revealed that UK businesses are looking to the Government for greater support to safeguard them from the ongoing threat of cybercrime.

According to RedSeal, nearly three-quarters (68%) of IT bosses polled for the survey said that their business had suffered at least one attack in the past 12 months, while almost a third (31%) said that the Government didn’t offer enough support or guidance on best cybersecurity practices.  

Other statistics included 19% of businesses polled admitting to not having a plan in place to deal with a cyberattack, along with 65% of IT teams  suggesting that senior management needed to take more notice to cybersecurity in 2019.

“We commissioned this research to explore how prepared businesses are to continue operating during an attack,” said Ray Rothrock, CEO of RedSeal.  “The number of high profile breaches has meant that 2018 has become the year where businesses are left wondering what more they can do to protect themselves, how to remain resilient, to keep operating and minimise customer damage.

“Our research highlights the fact that that senior IT bosses want the UK government direct more attention, money and resource to supporting their businesses in the face of cyberattacks.”

The research follows recent revelations from the National Cyber Security Centre which found that only 30% of UK businesses have a board member with responsibility for cybersecurity and only 10% require their suppliers to adhere to any cyber standards.

Healthcare IT leaders outline cyber security concerns

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Healthcare IT leaders are increasing their spending to defend against cyberattacks and feeling anxiety about Apple, Amazon and Google entering the health care space.

That’s according to a new report from the US-based Center for Connected Medicine (CCM) entitled Top of Mind for Top Health Systems 2019, which focuses on three areas of health IT set to impact health systems next year, namely Cybersecurity, Telehealth, and Interoperability.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Hackers and other cyber-criminals are stepping up their attacks on the health care industry, leading 87 percent of respondents to say they expect to increase spending on cybersecurity in 2019; no health system was expecting to decrease spending.
  • Health IT leaders overwhelmingly expect government and commercial reimbursement to provide the majority of funding for telehealth services by 2022; internal funding and patient payments are expected to provide the majority of funding for telehealth in 2019.
  • 70 percent of responding executives said they were “somewhat concerned” about big tech companies, such as Apple, Amazon and Google, disrupting the health care market; 10 percent were “very concerned.”

The US health care industry was hit with 2,149 breaches comprising a total of 176.4 million records between 2010 and 2017, according to a study published in JAMA Network in September 2018. And the number of data breaches increased in almost every year, starting with 199 in 2010 and ending with 344 in 2017.

The findings are based on quantitative and qualitative surveys of C-suite executives at nearly 40 US health systems. The research was conducted by the Health Management Academy in partnership with the CCM.

Ransomware and phishing top concerns for IT professionals

960 640 Stuart O'Brien
Ransomware (24%) and phishing attacks (21%) are the top two concerns among IT leaders in 2018, according to new research.
Barracuda surveyed more than 1,500 IT and security professionals in North America, EMEA, and APAC about their IT security priorities, how these have shifted over the 15 years and what is expected to change within another 15 years.
Other key finding include:
  • In 2003, viruses (26%) and spam and worms (18%) were noted as the top two threats
  • In 2003 only 3% identified cloud security as a top priority. This number has gone up to 14% in 2018
  • 43% identified AI and machine learning as the development that will have the biggest impact on cyber security in the next 15 years
  • 41% also believe the weaponisation of AI will be the most prevalent attack tactic in the next 15 years

Overall, Barracuda says study indicates that while the top security priorities have remained consistent over the past 15 years, the types of threats organisations are protecting against has shifted significantly.

Looking ahead, respondents believe that the cloud will be a higher priority 15 years in the future and that AI will be both a threat and an important tool.

A full 25 percent of respondents said email was their top security priority in 2003, and 23 percent said the same about their current priorities.

Network security came in a close second for both 2003 and 2018 priorities, with 24 percent and 22 percent respectively.

31 percent of respondents chose AI as the new technology that they will rely on to help improve security, and 43 percent identified the increasing use of artificial intelligence and machine learning as the development that will have the biggest impact on cyber security in the next 15 years.

On the other hand, 41 percent believe the weaponisation of AI will be the most prevalent attack tactic in the next 15 years.

“Artificial intelligence is technology that is top of mind for many of the IT professionals we spoke with — both as an opportunity to improve security and as a threat,” said Asaf Cidon, VP email security at Barracuda. “It’s an interesting contrast. We share our customers’ concern about the weaponization of AI. Imagine how social engineering attacks will evolve when attackers are able to synthesize the voice, image, or video of an impersonated target.”

IT employment landscape dominated by AI & cybersecurity

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Nearly one in three organisations plans to increase their IT staff in 2019, with AI and cybersecurity top of the list of skills required.

The 2019 State of IT report from Spiceworks surveyed 1,000 tech professionals in businesses across North America and Europe, and also found that one in four IT pros plans to seek new employment; with millennials are most likely to job hop.

Behind cybersecurity skills, AI tech expertise is the number two skill large enterprises are seeking, while job-hopping IT pros are primarily seeking better salaries and opportunities to advance their IT skills.

The report also found that while 29% of companies plan to increase their IT staff in 2019, most companies (59%) aren’t planning to build up their IT staff next year.

However, Spiceworks says that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not hiring at all. For example, some companies may be focused on backfilling positions formerly held by IT pros who may have left the building in search of greener pastures.

When comparing the data by company size, enterprises with 1,000+ employees are more likely to increase their IT staff next year than their smaller counterparts – the reports suggests this is because larger companies have more IT needs and data assets to manage, and they’re more likely to increase their tech spend in 2019 too.

IT security/cybersecurity skills are most sought after among companies planning to shore up IT staffing levels next year. When comparing the data by company size, it’s clear large enterprises (5,000+ employees) are more likely to seek AI expertise than their smaller counterparts. In fact, it’s the number two skill they’re looking for after security know-how.

On the other hand, midsize companies (500 to 999 employees) are more likely to seek candidates with DevOps skills. Smaller companies are more likely to prioritise hiring IT pros with end user hardware and infrastructure expertise. This finding comes as small businesses plan to significantly boost their hardware budgets in 2019.

In 2019, 26% of IT pros plan to find a new employer, 8% plan to leave the IT field for a new career, 6% plan to move into IT consulting, and 5% plan to retire.

However, job plans vary significantly by age. For example, 33% of millennial IT pros plan to seek new employment in 2019, compared to 26% of Gen X and 13% of baby boomers. Millennials are also more likely to expect a raise and promotion, while unsurprisingly, baby boomer IT pros are most likely to retire in 2019.

Additionally, when comparing the data by gender, Spiceworks says it’s worth noting that women are more likely to expect a promotion next year: 25% of female IT pros expect a promotion in 2019 compared to 14% of male IT pros. However, men are slightly more likely to anticipate a raise… 37% of men expect a raise next year compared to 33% of women.

Job plans also vary by region. For example, in the UK specifically, 38% of IT pros plan to find a new employer next year, compared to the 28% average in Europe and 24% in North America. Spiceworks speculates that this is because digital tech jobs are on the rise in the UK, which means more job opportunities for IT pros (and more temptation to job hop). In fact, according to the 2018 Tech Nation Report, UK employment in the digital tech sector increased by 13% between 2014 and 2017.

“Companies looking to maximize efficiencies and grow profits understand the potential artificial intelligence has to automate tasks and reduce the cost of doing business,” Peter Tsai, Senior Technology Analyst at Spiceworks. “But to effectively deploy and manage AI-enabled tech, organisations need workers with relevant AI skillsets and experience. And large enterprises, which often have resources dedicated to R&D, are already ahead of the game when it comes to experimenting with and getting value out of AI.”

SD-WAN deployments up, but networking and security challenges persist

960 640 Stuart O'Brien
 
New research has highlighted the improved network security, connectivity, flexibility, and cost savings enabled by SD-WAN , but says 98% of IT leaders cite networking challenges with their current WAN setup.

The report from Barracuda Networks includes data from more than 900 respondents in the Americas, EMEA, and APAC.

Respondents come from companies ranging from 1,000 to more than 5,000 employees across multiple sectors, including healthcare, finance, education, manufacturing, public sector, and retail.

Overall, the study indicates that SD-WAN deployments are increasing to address networking challenges resulting from the explosive growth of WAN traffic due to high demand for cloud applications and services. Security remains a top concern for an overwhelming majority of IT leaders as they consider upgrading to an SD-WAN solutions.

Highlights include:

  • Networking challenges are common with current WAN setups.
    • Top three challenges are complexity (48%), cloud performance (47%), and performance between locations (46%).
  • SD-WAN deployments are on the rise.
    • One-third have already deployed SD-WAN in most of their sites, and 49 percent are in the process of doing so or will in the next year.
    • 70 percent of IT leaders said they risk losing a competitive advantage if they don’t update their WAN.
  • Security is a top priority when choosing an SD-WAN solution.
    • 81 percent said advanced threat protection and centralized management were very important or crucial to their SD-WAN purchase.
  • SD-WAN offers improved security and lower costs.
    • Most common benefits of SD-WAN deployments are improved network security (57%), connectivity (56%), and network flexibility and agility (53%). 
    • Nearly half of respondents said they had reduced overall costs thanks to SD-WAN, and 36 percent reduced costs specifically for MPLS services.
Click here to download the full report.

Cybersecurity skills gap increases to 2.9 million globally

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

New research shows a widening of the global cybersecurity workforce gap to nearly three million across North America, Latin America, Asia-Pacific (APAC), and Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).

The 2018 (ISC)² Cybersecurity Workforce Study (formerly the Global Information Security Workforce Study) is based on feedback from a sample of professionals responsible for securing their organisations around the world.

It includes IT/ICT staff within organisations ranging from large enterprises to small businesses who may or may not have formal cybersecurity roles but do have hands-on responsibility for securing critical assets every day – spending at least 25% of their time on such activities.

Key insights revealed in the study include:

  • Of the 2.93 million overall gap, the Asia-Pacific region is experi­encing the highest shortage, at 2.14 million, in part thanks to its growing economies and new cybersecurity and data privacy legislation being enacted throughout the region
  • North America has the next highest gap number at 498,000, while EMEA and Latin America contribute a 142,000 and 136,000 staffing shortfall, respectively
  • 63% of respon­dents report that their organisations have a shortage of IT staff dedicated to cybersecurity. 59% say their companies are at moderate or extreme risk of cybersecurity attacks due to this shortage.
  • 48% of respondents say their organizations plan to increase cybersecurity staffing over the next 12 months
  • 68% of respondents say they are either very or somewhat satisfied in their current job
  • Women represent 24% of this broader cybersecurity workforce (compared to 11% from previous studies), while 35% are Millennial or Gen Y (compared to less than 20% from previous studies)
  • More than half of all respon­dents globally (54%) are either pursuing cybersecurity certifications or plan to within the next year

Some of the biggest career progression challenges respondents reported are:

  • Unclear career paths for cybersecurity roles (34%)
  • Lack of organisational knowledge of cybersecurity skills (32%)
  • The cost of education to prepare for a cybersecurity career (28%)

The four areas cybersecurity pros feel they will need to develop most or improve on over the next two years in order to advance in their careers include:

  • Cloud computing security
  • Penetration testing
  • Threat intelligence analysis
  • Forensics

“This research is essential to fostering a clearer understanding of who makes up the larger pool of cybersecurity workers and enables us to better tailor our professional development programs for the men and women securing organizations day in and day out,” said (ISC)2 CEO David Shearer, CISSP. “We will share these powerful insights with our partners in government and the private sector to help establish the programs necessary to advance the cybersecurity profession. By broadening our view of the workforce to include those with collateral cybersecurity duties within IT and ICT teams, we discovered that professionals are still facing familiar challenges, but also found striking differences compared to previous research, including a younger workforce and greater representation of women.”

Download the full study at www.isc2.org/research.

Only 40% of UK businesses ready for GDPR

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

New data from Crowd Research Partners indicates only 40 per cent of UK organisations are either GDPR compliant or well on their way to compliance by the May 2018 deadline.

The report highlights the lack of GDPR expertise and an overall underestimation of the effort required to meet GDPR, which represents the most sweeping change in data privacy regulation in decades.

The key findings of the study include:

  • A whopping 60% of organisations are at risk of missing the GDPR deadline. Only 7% of surveyed organizations say they are in full compliance with GDPR requirements today, and 33% state they are well on their way to compliance deadline.
  • While 80% confirm GDPR is a top priority for their organization, only half say they are knowledgeable about the data privacy legislation or have deep expertise; an alarming 25% have no or only very limited knowledge of the law.
  • The primary compliance challenges are lack of expert staff (43%), closely followed by lack of budget (40%), and a limited understanding of GDPR regulations (31%). A majority of 56% expect their organization’s data governance budget to increase to deal with GDPR challenges.
  • Approximately a third of surveyed companies report that they will need to make substantial changes to data security practices and systems to be in compliance with GDPR. The highest ranked initiative for meeting EU GDPR compliance is to make an inventory of user data and map it to protected EU GDPR categories (71%), followed by evaluating, developing, and integrating solutions that enable GDPR compliance.

The 2018 GDPR Compliance Report has been based on a comprehensive online survey of IT, cybersecurity and compliance professionals in the 400,000-member Information Security Community on LinkedIn, and has been produced in partnership with Alert Logic, AlienVault, Cavirin, Data443, D3 Security, Haystax Technology, and Securonix.

To download a copy, click here.

Big expansion of UK cyber security sector predicted

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Property management group Savills has predicted that cyber security firms will occupy 1m sq ft of offices in UK regions by 2023.

That’s up from 148,000 sq ft of office space leased in 2017.

Savills says the demand from business for extra IT security measures, plus investment from the VC community into cyber security to the tune of £220 million last year, means the sector is poised for substantial growth – physically as a well as economically.

Its research pinpointed clusters of start up activity in places like Oxford and Edinburgh – also close to university research hubs – as the result of inward investment.

Earlier this year Zion Research predicted the global cyber security market will reach $181.77 billion by 2021, equivalent to a CAGR of 9.5% from 2015 to 2021.

The data naturally cites increasing stringency of government regulations and growing cyber threats as key reasons for the growth.

Furthermore, rising severity of cyber-crimes, the popularity of cloud security, rapid adoption of cloud computing, data center, and wireless communication are expected to boost the cyber security market in the near future.

More women needed for cybersecurity roles

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

New research from Forrester has revealed a significant shortage of women currently employed in the cybersecurity industry.

Women represent just 11% of cybersecurity professionals worldwide – and with projections predicting 1.8 million unfilled jobs globally by 2022, it appears the industry is calling for a change to address the gender bias.

The research also revealed that decision makers working in IT security point to lack of staff (25%) and the unavailability of staff with the appropriate skills (22%) as concerns for their companies.

The report closes by recommending that if the industry is to fill its millions of open positions, Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) will need to actively recruit, retrain and promote women to help fill the global staff and skills shortages.

Key Trends

IT Security: The big issues for 2018

960 640 Stuart O'Brien

Identifying threats and educating staff about safety are the key issues for the UK’s cyber security professionals in 2018.

The findings come from a survey of the senior cyber security professionals attending this summer’s Security IT Summit, which takes place on July 3rd at the Hilton London, Canary Wharf.

These professionals include representatives from the likes of DXC Technologies, Financial Ombudsman Services, Freight Transport Association, London Stock Exchange Group, Marshall Motor Group, O2 Telefonica, Prudential, The Guardian, Vodafone and many more.

While the majority have highlighted a general cyber security strategy as the number one issue, are prominent areas of interest, closely followed by Access Control, Intrusion Detection, Malware, Penetration Testing and Phishing Detection.

“With a number of high profile breaches over the past 12 months, cyber security has never been so important to businesses and organisations of all sizes,” said Senior Portfolio Sales Manager Chris Cannon. “As our research demonstrates, analysing the threat of security and educating staff are key issues.”

% of the Security IT Summit sourcing specific solutions for 2018 and beyond:

UK Cyber Strategy – 58%

Advanced Threat Dashboard – 50%

Employee Security Awareness – 50%

Access Control – 46%

Intrusion Detection – 46%

Malware – 46%

Penetration Testing – 46%

Phishing Detection – 46%

Authentication – 42%

Mobile Security – 42%

Web Security – 42%

Anti-Virus – 38%

Browser Security – 38%

Cloud Web Security – 38%

Encryption – 38%

Inside Threat – 38%

Identity/Privacy Protection – 33%

Intrusion Prevention System – 33%

Network Security Management – 33%

Social Media Security – 38%

Vulnerability – 33%

The Security IT Summit is free to attend for cyber security professionals. To find out more about attending, contact Emily Gallagher on 01992 374085 or email e.gallagher@forumevents.co.uk.

If you are a supplier to the care sector and offer any of the solutions our delegates are sourcing, contact Chris Cannon on 01992 374096 or email c.cannon@forumevents.co.uk.

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