McAfee Research Reveals the Cost of Reactive Versus Proactive Security
SANTA CLARA, Calif., October 28, 2009 - McAfee, Inc. (NYSE: MFE) today released research finding that midsize organizations are cutting their security budgets at the same time that cyberthreats are escalating, according to McAfee’s report The Security Paradox. The study found that more than half of midsize companies surveyed globally have seen more security incidents in the past year, and a single midsized company lost $43K on average to security incidents. Meanwhile, the majority of these same companies reported spending freezes on their IT security budgets.
This paradox occurs in part because midsize companies are under the mistaken impression that hackers prefer to target larger companies. Almost half of midsize organizations surveyed (43 percent) think larger organizations with 501+ employees are most at risk for a security attack. In truth, organizations with less than 500 employees actually suffer from more attacks on average.
“An organization’s level of worry and awareness about increasing threats has not overcome the downward pressure on budgets and resources,” said Darrell Rodenbaugh, senior vice president of global midmarket for McAfee. “But this creates a vicious cycle of breach and repair that costs far more than prevention. Our research shows that organizations that put more effort on preventing attacks can end up spending less than a third as much as those that allow themselves to be at risk.”
McAfee’s study found that 65 percent of midsize organizations surveyed worldwide spend less than four hours a week on IT security proactively, but nearly the same amount (67 percent) spend more than a day recovering from IT security attacks. Threat and response varied greatly from country to country, but uniformly the countries where companies invested the least time on prevention—Canada and France among them—suffered the greatest financial losses and downtime from cybercrime when it happened, requiring a week or longer to recover from their most recent cyberattack.
Additional research findings:
McAfee’s report The Security Paradox was conducted by MSI International and looked at security spending in the last year by companies with 51-1,000 employees in Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. The results were compared to previous studies conducted in Europe and North America.
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McAfee, Inc., headquartered in Santa Clara, California, is the world's largest dedicated security technology company. McAfee is relentlessly committed to tackling the world's toughest security challenges. The company delivers proactive and proven solutions and services that help secure systems and networks around the world, allowing users to safely connect to the Internet, browse and shop the web more securely. Backed by an award-winning research team, McAfee creates innovative products that empower home users, businesses, the public sector and service providers by enabling them to prove compliance with regulations, protect data, prevent disruptions, identify vulnerabilities, and continuously monitor and improve their security. http://www.mcafee.com
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