2021’s State Of Cybersecurity: Concerning Figures Uncovered By New Survey

by | August 18, 2021 | Cybersecurity News

A fresh survey from CSO Global Intelligence with 2,741 respondents – security, IT, and business professionals around the world – delivers a clear image of this year’s state of cybersecurity so far: the attacks are only becoming more aggressive and costly, and organizations are pumping up their security budgets to cushion an otherwise heavy impact.

Keep reading to discover detailed facts and statistics on this year’s cybersecurity landscape.

Spiking Ransomware Attacks Shattered Indifference To Cybersecurity Risks

If security risks were being overlooked until now, the indifference towards them is slowly but surely evaporating. People can no longer sleep on cyber threats in the face of spiking ransomware attacks, software supply chain threats, and the challenges of ensuring safe remote work.

CSO’s Global Intelligence Report: The State of Cybersecurity in 2021 reached these conclusions after conducting an online survey in May and June of this year.

This Year’s State Of Cybersecurity Is Painted In Grim Figures

It’s not much of a surprise that half of the respondents said that they had observed an increase in cybersecurity incidents at their companies or organizations over the past year. However, the extent of the damages is what sticks out. Half of those who fell victim to an attack reported suffering financial damage, a drop in productivity levels, and theft of PII (personally identifiable information). In addition, 28% of victims had their intellectual property stolen.

What’s perhaps most unsettling is that 15% of those surveyed who had been attacked were forced to fully shut down their business, while 12% reported suffering “massive” economic damages.

State of Cybersecurity As Shown by CSO's survey results.
Source: CSO’s Global Intelligence Report: The State of Cybersecurity in 2021

Apparently, the utilities sector is becoming a hackers’ favorite, with 60% of organizations targeted and impacted by a cyberattack, the highest percentage of all industry sectors. Utility and energy companies had a massive 43% likelihood of reporting intellectual property theft, while wholesale and retail companies were most likely to experience PII theft, at a whopping 58%.

Since the survey was conducted worldwide, it offers additional insight. For example, companies located in the US and Canada were the most likely to report a significant increase in security incidents (53%), tailgated by the Asia-Pacific region (50%), Europe and Middle East (48%), Latin America, and Africa (each at 42%). To put it shortly, nobody is safe from cybercriminals.

Organizations Are Changing Their Security Measures And Incident Response Protocols

The survey’s respondents understand that cyberattacks aren’t going to give them a breather anytime soon. A crushing 62% of participants expect an attack on their organization, such as ransomware, will strike over the next 12 months.

Source: CSO’s Global Intelligence Report: The State of Cybersecurity in 2021

Organizations plan to respond to a potential attack by boosting their security budgets this year. 71% of them expect to spend more on security in the following months, with “attack prevention” as the top spending priority, at 43%. Cloud security came in second at 36%, while data privacy and network security the third place at 35%.

Companies in financial services, transportation, and technology were the most likely to report an increase of over 10% in their IT security budget for this year.

Security Awareness Training Is A Must

Despite the respondents being aware of dangers, the survey results regarding security awareness are disappointing, to say the least. Only 50% of those surveyed said that mandatory security training or security awareness programs had been in place for all employees “for some time now.” An additional 20% said that the concept had just been introduced. Such programs are undoubtedly a critical part of modern online security protection.

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CSO’s Global Intelligence Report: The State of Cybersecurity in 2021


Feature Image: Technology photo created by wirestock – www.freepik.com.”

by Diana Panduru

Content writer for Attack Simulator. Passionate about all things writing and cybersecurity, and obsessed with driving. I sometimes indulge in pencil drawing, poetry, and cooking for fun.

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