IT pros admit they're more worried about cyberattacks now than they were last year.

With data breaches on the rise, those who are working to stop them say they’re afraid of them.

It’s only a matter of time before a company gets hacked, according to a report from Neustar, an information services provider. And IT workers are twice as worried about data breaches compared to this time last year.

Every year attacks not only grow in quantity but also quality. The largest data breaches continue to out-do each other. Last year, a tally of data breaches showed they happen four times a day.

Not all threats are equal

When it comes to cyber attacks, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all threat. Among the findings:

  • Ransomware rules: Neustar says 22 percent of security professionals believe ransomware is the greatest threat to companies.
  • Rising attacks: 47 percent of security professionals believe DDoS attacks — or when hackers stop you from using your device — will grow this year. It was at 38 percent last year.
  • No end in sight: 90 percent of respondents say attacks like Meltdown-Spectre — where your computer memory can be taken and read without your permission — will soon be normal.

Security professionals rated different concerns based on which ones posed bigger threats. Other concerns make the list, including system compromises, DDoS, and financial theft.

Online security jobs are open — but not enough people can fill them

Cybersecurity workers might have an idea of what the biggest attacks are going to be, but they’re in an elite class.

That’s because there are plenty of cybersecurity jobs open. But there aren’t enough talented workers to fill those positions, a survey from CyberScoop found.

Because of the dire need for strong workers, many sectors are outsourcing their IT departments. The study also found that different industries have unique practices to handle cybersecurity.

Among the top concerns:

  • 57 percent said they stress being able to respond to top threats quickly enough.
  • Half said they had trouble adapting to the everchanging threats that are attacking them.
  • 41 percent admit to having a hard time attracting the right talent.

How organizations respond to threats depends on the industry they work in

The CyberScoop survey found that government workers believe they’re lacking in how they respond to threats. Fifty-seven percent of them rated their organization’s quickness to respond to threats as average or below average.

Government sectors are investing less money and resources into preventative measures. Fifty-nine percent of non-government sectors — like finance, health care, and technology — are using artificial intelligence (AI) to combat cybersecurity.

Two-thirds of industry sectors are investing 10 percent or more of their budget this year to AI. For government officials, it’s 34 percent.

When it comes to proactive measures, private industry leaders are more prepared. About two-thirds of industry workers say they perform security evaluations at least every six months.

Data breaches on the rise among retailers

It’s a good thing private companies are trying to up their security teams. It looks like they’ll need it.

That’s because 75 percent of U.S. retailers have experienced a breach before, according to a report from security company Thales. That’s double from last year’s report.

It might be from retailers using the cloud to store sensitive data about their customers. Garrett Bekker, a principal analyst for information technology research company 451 Research, blames old technology.

“While this trend can be partially attributed to U.S. retailers aggressively pursuing a multi-cloud strategy, these organizations continue, year after year, to spend on the same security solutions that worked for them previously,” Bekker says. “Traditional endpoint and network security are no longer sufficient to protect sensitive data.”

Data breaches among retailers are only going up, but retailers who are preparing and preventing them from happening again isn’t. Retailers are using outdated systems while gathering more personal information about their customers. This is putting millions of U.S. shoppers at risk.

Consumers care about their data — but not just when shopping

Consumers worry about their personal information leaking — whether it’s at the store or from their internet provider.

Most Americans worry their information is being leaked through internet service providers or ISPs. A survey from internet solutions company Open Garden found that 66 percent of Americans believe their ISP sells their data to advertisers. Three-in-four thinks the government has full access to their personal data as well.

A breach of privacy is a major theme among all generations. More than half of survey respondents — 54 percent — believe their internet service provider watches them while they’re online. With little competition among providers, consumers are unsure about what is best for them and take what’s given to them— even if it isn’t the right plan.

“Across generations, the cost of Internet service for most users remains very high,” the survey says. “On average, consumers are typically paying for more bandwidth than they need because network operators have precisely structured their business models that way.”

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Meet the Author

Dori Zinn

Dori Zinn


Zinn is a freelance journalist based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

News, Tech

identity theft

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Article last modified on December 18, 2018 Published by, LLC . Mobile users may also access the AMP Version: Data Breaches Worry the Group That's Supposed to Stop Them - AMP.