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Monday, 01 June 2020 11:21

Cybersecurity investments ‘failing’ say Australian companies Featured

By
Accenture security research author Joseph Failla Accenture security research author Joseph Failla

Many Australian companies believe that their cybersecurity investments are failing, whilst the number of breaches increased by 50% in Australia from 2018 to 2019, according to new research which also found that with the acceleration of cyber threats due to COVID-19, the overall threat landscape is accelerating and putting extra pressure on security functions.

According to Accenture’s third annual ‘State of Cyber Resilience Research’, four-fifths (84%) of Australian companies believe that their cybersecurity investments are failing, whilst the number of breaches increased by 50% in Australia from 2018 to 2019.

Accenture’s research surveyed 4,644 security executives globally – including 373 in Australia – and found that most (91%) Australian organisations are spending more than one fifth (20%) of their cybersecurity budgets on advanced technologies in a bid to drive greater cyber resilience in their organisations - with advanced technologies “those that help stop attacks, find and fix breaches faster and provide remediation”.

According to Accenture, Australian organisations are facing a growing challenge with seven in ten (70%) stating that staying ahead of attackers is a constant battle, and “the costs to shore up cyber resilience are spiralling out of control”.

Accenture says that the research found that nearly half (43%) of Australian companies reported cost increases on cybersecurity spend in the last two years with 11% declaring cost rises greater than 25%.

“Australian organisations are mainly struggling with vulnerabilities across the business. Less than half of respondents (43%) say they are actively protected by their security programs, illustrating significant gaps in coverage. Over 90% of all breaches in Australian companies lasted more than 24 hours,” Accenture noted.

The research also found that:

  • Over half (58%) of breaches in Australian companies are found by the security team.
  • Thirty-eight percent of security breaches at Australian organisations are indirect attacks that target weak links in the supply chain.
  • Nearly two fifths (38%) of breaches have no impact on organisations, claim survey respondents.
  • Three-quarters (71%) of breaches were fixed in less than 15 days

“Now, more than ever, cybersecurity is an increasing challenge for Australian organisations, as the prevalence of sophisticated and insidious cyber-attacks continues to grow,” says Joseph Failla, Security Lead, Accenture Australia and New Zealand.

“Organisations are grappling with the new and sudden reality of COVID-19 which is putting even greater strain on their already under-pressure security systems.

“Using threat intelligence and more strategic approaches to cybersecurity can help Australian organisations stay protected and better equipped to respond effectively when the enemy strikes. By becoming more resilient and agile, businesses will be able to grow confidently through this turbulent time.”


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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