The almost total pervasiveness of phishing scams and other email-based attacks can be seen in a recent survey that found almost 90 percent of the cybersecurity executives saying their company was hit with an attempted or successful email-based cyberattack in the last year.
The Barracuda survey found employers are experiencing more email attacks with 81 percent seeing an increase in the last year, and 25 percent of those describing the increase as being dramatic. This is leading to the cost of mitigating costs with 81 percent seeing a jump in cost with 22 percent describing the price rising dramatically.
The price that must be paid in the wake of an attack is not just monetary. Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed said an email incident forced their IT team to divert needed resources from other priorities to deal with an attack; employee productivity was interrupted said 61 percent and 10 percent reported that their firm’s reputation took a hit.
Having sensitive corporate information stolen was judged to be the most costly kind of attack, followed by ransomware and business email compromise. When it came to recovering from a ransomware attack 12 percent of the companies decided their only option was to pay the ransom with the remaining 88 percent declining to do so. Interestingly, enterprise-size businesses were more likely to pay compared to small and medium-size operations.
“Based on how pervasive ransomware attacks have become, along with the accompanying media coverage, it’s somewhat surprising to see such a small percentage of companies paying. Perhaps it’s actually a glimmer of hope: maybe organizations had comprehensive backup solutions in place and were able to rapidly recover critical data without paying,” the report stated.
Thirty-five percent of the surveyed executives said their firm had been hit with a ransomware attack in the last year with 75 percent of those individual saying the malware was delivered via email, 32 percent from the web and 23 percent through network traffic.