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Survey Exposes The Dirty Little Secret Of Undisclosed Breaches

Nearly 70 percent of U.S. security pros say complexity and volume of malware attacks hinder their defenses
Nearly 60 percent of malware investigations in U.S. enterprises involve data breaches that were not disclosed, according to new research.

Some 66 percent of security professionals at U.S. companies with more than 500 employees say they have investigated or worked on a breach that was not disclosed by their organizations, while 57 percent said they had worked on a data breach that went unreported, according to a survey of 200 security professionals by OpinionMatters, which was commissioned by ThreatTrack.

"While it is discouraging that so many malware analysts are aware of data breaches that enterprises have not disclosed, it is no surprise that the breaches are occurring," says Julian Waits, CEO at ThreatTrack. "Every day, malware becomes more sophisticated, and U.S. enterprises are constantly targeted for cyberespionage campaigns from overseas competitors and foreign governments. This study reveals that malware analysts are acutely aware of the threats they face, and while many of them report progress in their ability to combat cyberattacks, they also point out deficiencies in resources and tools."

Senior executives' devices become infected 56 percent of the time due to their opening a malicious URL in a phishing email, 45 percent of the time after letting a family member use a company-owned device, 40 percent of the time due to visiting a pornographic website, and 33 percent for installing a malicious mobile app.

Around 40 percent of the IT pros say one of their biggest challenges is they don't have the security staff resources they need. Some 67 percent say malware complexity is the hardest part of protecting their networks; 67 percent, the volume of malware attacks; and 58 percent, ineffective anti-malware products.

It takes more than two hours for more than half of security pros to analyze a new malware sample, and 4 percent say it takes them less than an hour.

A white paper on the report is available here for download.

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