Is IT security keeping up with Technology?

A recent survey by Dimension Data looking at corporate network devices in 2010 showed that 73% were carrying at least one known security vulnerability. This figure was almost half (38%) in 2009.

So are large organisations putting our data at risk by not keeping up to date with technology and the new risks that are evolving every day?

Neil Campbell of Dimension Data has said: “Given the pressure that organisations are under from regulatory bodies, consumers and their executives to protect customer information and privacy, as well as sensitive business information from both cyber criminals and competitors, it’s hard to believe that they would knowingly expose themselves to this level of risk”

He goes on to say: “The truth of the matter is that many organisations still don’t have consistent and complete visibility of their technology estates.” This really comes to light when we hear stories in recent news of large companies being victims of hacking. The biggest of the recent news stories is the PlayStation network hack which saw hackers penetrating the system and stealing personal information from roughly 77 million accounts. This hack is estimated to have cost Sony (the makers of PlayStation) $170M.

New news has also claimed that 99% of Android devices are vulnerable to security hacks and even Mark Zuckerburg, the creator of facebook, had his account on the social network hacked earlier this year.

Neil Campbell went on to describe the real threat that even a minor security lapse could cause: “To a hacker, a security vulnerability is equivalent to leaving one’s front door unlocked. And attempting to exploit vulnerabilities is usually the first port of call when initiating an attack. That’s because it may provide the hacker with full access to the device, which he could use as a launch pad to initiate further attacks internally.”

With some of the worlds biggest companies falling foul of breaches in their IT security to such a great extent, it only goes to show the importance of IT security jobs and IT security processes being in place. But is enough being done to keep one step ahead of online threats? Are companies taking their responsibilities to protect data seriously?

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