The new 2021 Cybersecurity Census Report by Keeper Security reveals the concerns and pressures that UK businesses are experiencing in the face of emerging cyber security challenges.
UK businesses have never before faced a more aggressive and relentless onslaught of cyberattacks, resulting in significant financial losses in the event of a successful attack.
The frequency and complexity of cyber attacks is on the rise, resulting in a massive 92% of businesses reporting experiencing an attack in the last year, and 72% being successfully breached on at least one occasion.
Of those who experienced financial theft as a result of a breach, 41% reported losing over £50,000, and almost 10% lost over £1 million.
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A key challenge for UK businesses is a lack of cybersecurity skills or knowledge.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of organisations believe that they don't have the necessary skills to effectively protect themselves against cyber attacks, and over three quarters (78%) of senior IT professionals believe that businesses in the UK are generally not well-prepared for inbound threats.
Simple user errors are also a notable risk, with 34% of IT professionals admitting to using the same password across multiple professional accounts, and 32% disclosing that their accounts use extremely weak credentials, such as 'password' or 'admin'. This means that a significant number of users are leaving their organisations vulnerable to account takeover.
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The pandemic has dramatically affected and altered the foundations of almost all UK businesses.
With many organisations forced to shift to remote work practically overnight, IT departments are facing new challenges to ensure business continuity, whilst simultaneously trying to defend against new cyber attacks, like emerging phishing campaigns that we have seen leveraging COVID related messaging.
With limited resources, many companies have had to prioritise business continuity entirely, with 66% of organisations having to relax their cyber security policies to allow staff to work remotely without stifling their productivity.
In contrast, some businesses have reported increased focus on cyber security since the beginning of the pandemic, with 79% of IT leaders believing it will only become even more important as they navigate the next 12 months.
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