The Importance of Endpoint Security

The rise in cyber crime is more prevalent than ever  as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The FBI has reported that cyber crime activities have increased by as much as 300% since the beginning of the pandemic. They’re now seeing anywhere between 3,000 and 4,000 cyber security complaints every day, up from an average of about 1,000 per day.

It’s no real surprise that we’re seeing this dramatic increase in cyber crime. This pandemic has forced businesses throughout the world to implement working from home practices, and as a result, millions of employees are now using personal computers, tablets, and mobile phones to access organizational networks. Cyber criminals are as determined as ever to  take advantage of a vulnerable time in our history. They know that remote workers are less protected than those working in the safety of corporate offices, and they won’t pass up the opportunity to reap the benefits.

With such a significant increase in the remote workforce and the observed  spike in cyber crime, the importance of endpoint security has never been higher. Organizations must take initiative to protect the devices used by employees who are working from home.

The Likelihood Of An Attack

We know cyber crime is increasing at an alarming rate, but what does this really mean for organizations who aren’t currently protected or have significant gaps in their security? To answer that question, we have to understand how vulnerable we really are.

Our good friends at eSentire developed a risk propensity tool that’s based on real-world occurrences. The information below illustrates the potential risks that finance, legal, and healthcare organizations face over a 12-month period.

As seen above, the more sites an organization has, the more likely they are to face an attack in the near future. These risks are even higher now than before as employees continue to work from home and organizations consider the continuation of work-from-home practices.

The Rate At Which Attacks Result In Data Breaches

To take this illustration a step further, eSentire found that these security incidents resulted in data breaches 11% of the time for finance organizations, 17% of the time for legal organizations, and 46% of the time for healthcare organizations.

For those who noticed that healthcare organization attacks have resulted in data disclosures at a much higher rate (nearly half the time!) than their finance and legal counterparts, this is due, in large part, to how well data is protected and the level of cyber security investments the legal and finance industries have made respectively. In some ways, this shows how beneficial it can be to implement proper cyber security solutions.

Understanding The Financial Impact

Ponemon Institute, a leader in information technology studies and research, has found that the financial costs of cyber attacks continues to increase. In fact, this study indicates that each individual record lost in a data breach costs financial organizations $210, legal organizations $178, and healthcare organizations $429.

While it’s nearly impossible to determine exactly how many records will be lost in the event of a security breach, it’s clear that a compromise will be costly.

Let’s extrapolate the financial figures from above and imagine that there was a security breach in which 2,000 records were lost. This incident would cost financial organizations approximately  $420,000, legal organizations $356,000, and healthcare organizations $858,000. With hundreds of thousands of dollars on the line, the importance of cyber security protection cannot be underestimated.

Invest In Endpoint Protection Before An Attack

Even with all the data that suggests endpoint security solutions should be a mandatory business practice, many organizations fail to take proactive measures. In fact, we see it happen all too often—institutions only take action after they’ve faced a cyber attack or one of their networks has been compromised. An approach like this will result in costly cyber security attacks that put businesses at risk of collapse.

Additionally, some businesses take the low-budget approach to security, implementing traditional antivirus protection for endpoints. The problem with this method is that traditional antivirus software does not adequately protect against today’s sophisticated attackers. In fact, Ponemon’s study found that 57% of institutions were aware that traditional antivirus was not an effective method for stopping complex attacks.

An advanced endpoint protection solution is absolutely necessary to protect organizations from cyber attacks that could put them out of business. A comprehensive endpoint protection and response solution will monitor, detect, and mitigate threats before they can become successful attacks.

Final Thoughts

Organizational leaders must take the time to understand the probability of a cyber attack as well as the financial risks involved. Once they’re aware of each factor and how it can impact their business, the need for investing in a comprehensive security solution with a managed service provider is much clearer.

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