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Vulnerabilities / Threats

12/13/2012
07:00 PM
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Survey: Threat Intelligence Reports Play Key Role In Security Strategies

Turns out enterprises really do read and take heed of security threat intelligence reports

Turns out most enterprises consider the security threat intelligence reports that blanket the industry these days as key resources.

Some 83 percent of organizations said they use threat intell reports to help shape their security strategies, and 78 percent said they use the reports as ammunition in their security budget processes, according to a survey conducted by managed security services provider Solutionary.

"Eighty-three percent using threat intelligence reports to draw our their vision for a security strategy ... is a pretty high percentage," says Rob Kraus, director of Solutionary's security engineering research team.

The around 180 respondents in the survey are from U.S.-based companies and are a mix of C-level executives, vice presidents, directors, managers, and administrators. The most popular piece of information they want included in threat reports to assist in their security budgets and resource processes: "Self assessment that allows me to show business stakeholders our risk status."

Solutionary's Kraus says the survey shows that these managers need threat information to help them approach upper management for security resources and buys. "It was surprising that organizations need more help and guidance on how to secure resources," he says.

They also want "actionable" intelligence with defense recommendations, the survey found. They value the executive summary section of intelligence reports (27 percent) as a key tool for influencing upper management to approve their budget requests, followed by summary statistics on the volume of attacks and threats (22.1 percent) and specific details on the types of threats (20.4 percent).

As for the respondents who don't rely on threat intell reports, they said they would use these reports if they also included information on how to apply the intelligence to secure resources and their budgets.

The bottom line is that security still is a tough sell to upper management in many organizations. "Security is a luxury until someone gets compromised. Then, all of a sudden, budgets become available," Kraus says. "One of the things we are trying to ingrain is that security needs to be part of your company's culture. One of our big drives for 2013 is a lot of writing and research not just on what the attacks are, but on how they can be addressed from a cultural perspective."

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Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

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