5 Cybersecurity Stats of 2017 and What They Mean For You

Jordan Cueto | August 11, 2017 at 3:58 pm

Cybersecurity is the biggest investment you must focus on this 2017, but where do you start? With so many things to consider like business readiness, resources, and digital threats, it’s no surprise that the average decision maker will find trouble on which data to focus on. With that in mind, CSO by IDG nailed down five key statistics this 2017 that shows a basic grasp of the overall state of today’s cybersecurity landscape:


1. $6 billion damage costs by 2021

Cybercrime and cybersecurity have a weird relationship: they cannot exist without the other. Donald Trump even recognized that cyber theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States.

“Cyber theft is the fastest growing crime in the United States by far. As president, improving cybersecurity will be an immediate and top priority for my administration. One of the very first things I will do is to order a thorough review of our cyber defenses and weaknesses,” said Trump on his speech at Retired American Warriors PAC in Herndon, Virginia.

With global influencers taking cybercrime seriously, it’s only a matter of time before cybercrime becomes one of the primary foundations of every nation’s security. Cyber theft and other digital threats played a lot in moving forward different global interests and will continue to do so.


2. Spending will exceed $1 trillion from 2017 to 2021

To counter the astounding amount of total damages, the cybersecurity efforts across all fronts will also jump in value. According to Steve Morgan, CEO at Cybersecurity Ventures, technology forecasts are unable to keep pace with the simultaneous developments in cybercrime.

There’s just too many to keep track of: the refocusing of malware from PCs and laptops to smartphones and mobile devices; the deployment of billions of under-protected Internet of Things (IoT) devices; the legions of hackers-for-hire; and the more sophisticated cyber-attacks launching at businesses, governments, educational institutions, and consumers globally.

This calls for urgency across all digital fronts – it’s a race and getting left behind means losing. Digital transformation is no longer about merely adapting to the changes in technology, it’s about how FAST you adapt.

Innovators are already pumping more resources in developing cybersecurity options for the whole world. Rob Owens, Senior Research Analyst at Pacific Crest Securities, told Business Daily that he sees a pent-up demand for cybersecurity spending. IBM’s chairman, CEO, and President Ginni Rometly also said that data is the phenomenon of our time and is the world’s new natural resource, putting cybercrime as the single greatest threat to every industry.


3.  Cybersecurity employment will triple by 2021

Cybersecurity demands a lot of talent: decision makers, technical people, problem-solvers. Every IT position is now a cybersecurity position. Every developer, programmer, and IT manager should be involved in protecting apps, data, devices, and the whole network infrastructure. Countries like India, Israel, Japan, France, Germany, Australia, and US are now opening positions across all sectors for cybersecurity.

Even with all the global effort to hire more talent, the pace of developments in cybercrime shows no slowdowns. According to Robert Herjavec, founder and CEO at Herjavec Group, “The pipeline of security talent isn’t where it needs to be to help curb the cybercrime epidemic. Until we can rectify the quality of education and training that our new cyber experts receive, we will continue to be outpaced by the Black Hats.”


4. Attacks on humans will exceed attacks on machines by 2020

With IoT and mobility being the focus of the cloud-first, mobile-first world, the attacks will start shifting from machines to humans. Microsoft estimates that 4 billion people will be online by 2020 – double the number of what we have now.

We have billions of connected workers, but also billions of potential targets. Employees are the primary targets of these hackers who are after personal identities, with some of them even selling sensitive personal data in the dark web.

The problem stems from most businesses, especially small startups, having no type of any cybersecurity awareness or even a dedicated IT department. CSO even predicts that by 2030, the human attack surface might equal global population at 8.5 million, which is a huge number of people we must train in the next years.


5. Global ransomware costs will exceed $5 billion by 2017

The recent WannaCry and Petya shows how contagious and disruptive ransomware can be. It’s a wake-up call: we must improve our cybersecurity posture or face the consequences of uncontrollable developments in technology.

WannaCry alone caused an estimated $1 billion damage cost within its first week, while Petya managed to halt majority of Ukraine’s private and public operations from banks to airports. Ransomware and other cybersecurity threats are already discovering new pathways and exploits. Just this month, Mirai was able to create an exploit that brings DDoS attacks to everyday connected items, creating new opportunities for cyberattacks to infest once again.

With these statistics in mind, one thing is for sure: investments today in cybersecurity will make huge returns. Decision makers must prioritize training employees and introducing them to different tools that will someday become reliable defense against sophisticated threats.

Office 365 and Azure are excellent options for you to start your journey for a better cybersecurity posture. Coupled with a trusted Microsoft partner like Tech One Global, rest assured that you can have all the preparation needed to face the cybersecurity threats of today and tomorrow.

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