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Cyber Risk Management

The State of Cybersecurity

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The COVID-19 pandemic has launched a revolution in the digital world. Workforces have shifted to online platforms, which has led to a significant rise in cyberattacks ranging from simple phishing attacks to sophisticated supply chain management attacks surrounding the remote work environment. According to FBI reports, cyberattacks have increased by 300% since the pandemic started.

Google has highlighted that its company blocked over 18 million coronavirus phishing attempts per day at the start of the pandemic. Overall, the cyber threat trend has increased as more individuals and firms rely on the internet to carry out their everyday operations.

As companies have moved to flexible work hours or full-time home-based work models, so have attack surfaces. Threat actors use current events and changing situations to target people who are most vulnerable.

Every individual has encountered a fraudulent email, phone, or text message related to Covid-19. Some of them have claimed to sell safety equipment, hand sanitizer, or food. Cybercrime has increased by a huge margin since the start of the global pandemic

Cybersecurity statistics for 2021

Given below is a detailed look at the cyber security statistics 2021.

1- Malware Statistics

Malware is the most expensive type of security breach for businesses. Since 2019, the cost of malware attacks has increased by an enormous amount. Meanwhile, The cost of malicious insider attacks has increased even more. Malware, Web-based attacks, and denial-of-service attacks are the major contributing factors to this revenue loss.

Based on the Verizon 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR), a sum of 5,258 confirmed data breaches occurred in 16 different industries and 4 distinct world regions. 86% of the breaches were financially motivated. This is a substantial increase from the 2020 DBIR’s 3,950 confirmed attacks (out of 32,002 incidents).

CSO online research shows that roughly 95% of all malware attacks are delivered via email. According to Statista report 2021, the number of malware attacks worldwide reached 5.4 billion between 2015 and 2021. Over 80% of the attacks that occurred in North America were carried out as automated bot attacks.

Security Driven Artificial Intelligence has been cost-effective, saving up to $3.81 million (80% cost difference). Zero trust security strategies have been crucial and saved $1.76 million per breach.

2- Ransomware Statistics

As per 2021 statistics, Ransomware continues to thrive, and organizations continue to pay a high price for these attack vectors. Additionally, attackers target a diverse range of entities, from local and national governments to businesses and nonprofits, making it difficult to solve. In 2021, ransomware was 57 times more harmful than it was in 2015.

  • Accent Consulting stated that ransomware attacks were predicted to cost businesses $20 billion by 2020, having increased more than 50 times since 2015.
  • Ransomware Infection rates remain increasing. According to the BlackFog report,  Ransomware seems to be most prevalent in populations that are highly connected to the internet, such as those in the United States and Europe.
  • As per NCBI, REevil was the most prevalent ransomware in the 4th quarter of 2019, with attacks continuing into 2020.
  • PWC stated that malicious email attacks have increased by 600% during 2021, primarily driven by the pandemic.
  • According to National Security Institute, the average cost of ransomware incidents has risen from $5,000 in 2018 to around $200,000 in 2020.
  • Cybercrime Magazine estimates that a ransomware attack will occur every 11 seconds in 2021.
  • Fortinet declares that almost one out of every 6,000 emails contains a potentially malicious link that is associated with ransomware. 
  • According to Cybereason, 42% of users reported that their cyber insurance did not compensate for their ransomware-related losses.

3- Industry Specific Cybersecurity Statistics

Several Industries were affected due to cyberattacks during the pandemic:

  • According to Comparitech, public companies lose 8.6% of their value due to cyber intrusion.
  • In 2020, 66% of firms suffered some form of phishing, including the most common type, spear-phishing attacks. This is dropped by 83% from 2019.
  • Companies in France and Japan are less likely to pay a ransomware attack and seem to have reduced breaches.

According to Proof Point’s research, the engineering and telecommunications industries have been particularly vulnerable to phishing attempts, whereas legal firms and hospitals have passed phishing tests more often.

4- Cybersecurity Jobs statistics 2021

Cybercrime is estimated to cost the world $6 trillion by the end of 2021. This figure is expected to rise to $10.5 trillion by 2025.

To keep up with escalating cybercrime, the worldwide information security market is expected to grow to $170.4 billion by 2022.

61% of cybersecurity experts say that their team is understaffed. Furthermore, the cybersecurity skills gap will continue to be a major issue, with 3.5 million unfilled jobs in 2021.

Packetlabs has developed a list of 2021 cybersecurity statistics to help with internal or external stakeholder presentations or meetings. These current statistics may illustrate the importance of upgrading an organization’s cybersecurity posture. It may also broaden the understanding of where the firm stands in the cybersecurity landscape.

Conclusion

Without a doubt, 2021 has been the most affected year by COVID-19 after 2020, as several workforces have switched to digitalizing data. As a result, cybersecurity risks and attacks have increased with the increase in the online work environment. It has been a good year for job applicants in the cybersecurity sector. However, companies have had to fill the skill gap and number of work positions to reduce cyberattack risks.

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