Story image

Almost half of NZ businesses unprepared for data breaches

22 Nov 2018

Forty-five percent of New Zealand businesses rate themselves as not secure on both managing security from different endpoints and protecting company data when employees are working remotely, a study by HP has found.

Only 50% of businesses feel any confidence that they would cope if their business experienced a significant cybersecurity breach.

 The HP New Zealand IT Security Study, conducted in September 2018, surveyed 434 New Zealand small to large businesses across the services, production, retail and hospitality, health and education, and distribution industries.

A key objective of the research was to identify New Zealand SMBs’ approach to IT security, including policies, procedures and risk management and where their perceived weaknesses exist.

“The consequences of a data breach are severe; from financial to brand and reputation damage,” says HP New Zealand managing director Grant Hopkins.

“Organisations need to be vigilant about implementing processes that regularly monitor, detect and report data breaches. Running regular risk assessments and managing your endpoint security is critical in keeping businesses data safe.”

As more New Zealanders work remotely, use personal devices in the workplace, and work in public spaces, traditional security measures and antivirus programs are becoming less effective.

Sixty percent of businesses regularly allow remote working (and remote access to company data) but only 42% of them have a security policy in place.

Furthermore, while visual hacking represented the area of greatest perceived weakness, only one in five businesses have integrated privacy screens on desktops/laptops to protect this type of breach.

Many IT departments tend to focus their efforts around PCs, tablets and other connected devices, but they neglect one of the largest areas of vulnerability: the printer.

The study found that New Zealand businesses have printers that are relatively insecure with 30% not offering any security features and only 35% of businesses including printers in their IT security assessment.

Without embedded security measures like real-time threat detection, automated monitoring, and data encryption, printers are left open and vulnerable to attack.

Not only does this make the confidential and sensitive documents that are printed, scanned and copied by the printer easily accessible for hackers, but risks the entire network being hacked, while bypassing the firewall altogether. 

“Endpoint security – at the device level – is critical. Organisations tend to rely solely on third-party software security to protect their devices when, in reality, stronger and better business security must be integrated into the device itself,” says Hopkins.

“With hackers able to bypass traditional network perimeter security and antivirus programs, it’s time to scrutinise a hardware’s security as closely, if not more, than our external security solutions.”

Today’s SMBs must implement processes and technologies designed to both proactively detect and prevent against a cyber attack.

SecOps: Clear opportunities for powerful collaboration
If there’s one thing security and IT ops professionals should do this year, the words ‘team up’ should be top priority.
Interview: Culture and cloud - the battle for cybersecurity
ESET CTO Juraj Malcho talks about the importance of culture in a cybersecurity strategy and the challenges and benefits of a world in the cloud.
Enterprise cloud deployments being exploited by cybercriminals
A new report has revealed a concerning number of enterprises still believe security is the responsibility of the cloud service provider.
Ping Identity Platform updated with new CX and IT automation
The new versions improve the user and administrative experience, while also aiming to meet enterprise needs to operate quickly and purposefully.
Venafi and nCipher Security partner on machine identity protection
Cryptographic keys serve as machine identities and are the foundation of enterprise information technology systems.
Machine learning is a tool and the bad guys are using it
KPMG NZ’s CIO and ESET’s CTO spoke at a recent cybersecurity conference about how machine learning and data analytics are not to be feared, but used.
Seagate: Data trends, opportunities, and challenges at the edge
The development of edge technology and the rise of big data have brought many opportunities for data infrastructure companies to the fore.
Popular Android apps track users and violate Google's policies
Google has reportedly taken action against some of the violators.