Wednesday, 31 March 2021 02:45

Cyber Protection Week reveals ‘post-pandemic paradox’: more solutions do not bring better protection

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Despite 80% of organisations running up to an incredible 10 different protection and cybersecurity solutions simultaneously, more than 50% of them still report experiencing downtime from data loss last year, showing just how many in the security industry are behind in catching up to today’s cyber Cold War and constantly cyber attacked reality.

Acronis. With dual headquarters in Singapore and Switzerland, a strong US presence and global sales from consumers, to businesses of all sizes, managed service providers and more, the not only company bills itself as a global leader in cyber protection but is a genuine cyber protection leader.

Evolving to offer what is arguably the industry’s best and most robust anti-malware, anti-ransomware, Zoom and video conferencing protection and more in its True Image 2021, while adding zero-day protection, patching protection, backups of Microsoft 365, G-Suite and more, Acronis is a breath of fresh air and an example for the rest of the industry.

Acronis came to security from a backup and data security background, and this has given Acronis a the benefit of a different approach and a much more all-encompassing vision of cyber protection than the traditional Internet security company, of which there are many, that have added their own anti-ransomware protections, along with backup capabilities, and for some, additional benefits like a VPN, a password manager and other features and benefits.

This makes Acronis a genuine alternative to the traditional security vendors as it offers full anti-virus, anti-malware and anti-ransomware protections, while offering advanced online and offline backup and restoration capabilities, while delivering very impressive industry AV results including 100% detection of malware with zero false positives.

Now comes Acronis’ second annual Cyber Protection Week survey, which the company says “uncovered a dangerous disconnect between the need for organisations to keep their data protected and the ineffective investments they've made trying to reach that goal.”

“While 2020 saw companies purchase new systems to enable and secure remote workers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Acronis continued, “those investments are not paying off.“

We’re told “the global survey discovered that 80% of companies now run as many as 10 solutions simultaneously for their data protection and cybersecurity needs -- yet more than half of those organisations suffered unexpected downtime last year because of data loss."

Acronis also audaciously altered March 31's World Backup Day last year and transformed it into World Cyber Protection Week, Acronis affirmed that traditional backup was dead and simply not enougn to protect you today alone, with malware and ransomware encrypting software going after traditional backup files it can find to make recovery without paying a ransom nearly impossible - and which Acronis has several active protections against.

“The findings from Acronis' annual survey, which polled 4,400 IT users and professionals in 22 countries across six continents, dispel the myth that simply adding more solutions will solve cybersecurity and data protection challenges.

“Not only does investing in more solutions not deliver more protection, in many cases trying to manage protection across multiple solutions creates greater complexity and less visibility for the IT team, which increases risk.”

Serguei "SB" Beloussov, Founder and CEO of Acronis said: “This year's Cyber Protection Week survey clearly illustrates that more solutions do not deliver greater protection, as using separate tools to address individual types of exposure is complicated, inefficient, and costly.

"These findings confirm our belief that the smarter approach is cyber protection, which unifies data protection, cybersecurity, and endpoint management in one."

What are some more highlights from the survey?

Knowledge gap contributes to IT challenges

“Complicating matters, there is a significant gap in awareness among users and IT pros of what IT and cybersecurity capabilities are available to them, which can cause them to lose valuable time, money, and security.”

  • 68% of IT users and 20% of IT professionals would not know if their data had been modified without their knowledge because their solution makes determining that kind of tampering difficult.
  • 43% of IT users don't know if their anti-malware stops zero-day threats because their solution doesn't make that information easily available. Having easy access to such cybersecurity insights is critical to ensuring data is protected.
  • A shocking 10% of IT pros don't know if their organisation is subject to data privacy regulations. If those responsible for ensuring data privacy don't know they are culpable, they cannot implement strategies or evaluate the solutions needed to address the requirements. That ignorance puts the business at tremendous risk of major fines for potential compliance violations in 2021.

“For anyone using multiple solutions to solve their IT and cybersecurity needs, the lack of transparency into such information only gets worse. Not only must they remember which solution provides a particular data point, they are constantly switching between consoles to find the details they need -- leading to inefficiencies and missed insights. “

Individuals' lax approach to protection

The survey also revealed a staggeringly lax approach to data protection among IT users.

  • 83% of IT users spent more time on their devices last year, yet only half of them took extra steps to protect those devices
  • 33% admit to not updating their devices until at least a week after being notified of a patch
  • 90% of IT users reported performing backups, yet 73% have irretrievably lost data at least once, suggesting that they don't know how to back up or recover properly

“The efforts of individuals to protect their data aren't keeping pace with threats, which is likely due to false assumptions (such as believing Microsoft 365 backs up their data) or a reliance on automatic solutions.”

What are Acronis’ “Action items for Cyber Protection Week”?

The challenges of protecting and securing data, applications, and systems will continue to grow in the post-pandemic world. To ensure that data is protected, Acronis recommends five simple steps:

  1. Create backups of important data. Keep multiple copies of your backups, with one local copy for fast recovery and one off-site in the cloud to guarantee recovery if disaster destroys your copies.
  2. Update your operating systems and applications. Outdated systems and apps lack the security fixes that stop cybercriminals from gaining access. Regular patching is required to avoid exploits.
  3. Avoid suspicious emails, links, and attachments. Most malware infections are the result of social engineering techniques that trick unsuspecting individuals into opening infected email attachments or clicking on links to websites that host malware.
  4. Install antivirus, anti-malware, and anti-ransomware software while enabling automatic updates so your system is protected against malware.
  5. Consider adopting a single cyber protection solution to have the central management and integrated protection needed to meet today's IT requirements.

You can read the report here for yourself in full - just scroll down a little on the page and you’ll see global stats, as well as two more reports thet give an Americas and European “Deep Dive”, respectively. 

 


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

Alex Zaharov-Reutt is iTWire's Technology Editor is one of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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