According to results of a recent report released by Accenture, many businesses are needlessly opening themselves to risk of security breaches by failing to invest in basic cyber security.

The report, titled State of Cyber Resilience 2019, investigates how prepared businesses are for an array of cyber threats. While it found that most companies are improving when it comes to putting in place strong defences that will deter criminals and put them at lower risk of falling victim to data breaches, they are still lacking in many areas.

Accenture assessed the preparedness of 4,600 businesses around the globe. The businesses were from a variety of industries with varying budgets for security and the results were compiled to give an overall flavour of the current state of cybersecurity.

Here’s what we can learn from the report.

Leadership on security needs to come from the top

One section of the report looked at the performance of leaders in the organisation regarding cyber security.

The report declared that nearly three out of every four business leaders (74 per cent) are only categorised as ‘average’ performers when it comes to cybersecurity. This means that they are not informed when it comes to understanding where threats may come from and how they can subsequently be tackled, nor are they entirely capable of hiring people that will be able to handle such problems on their behalf.

Less than one-fifth of all leaders – 17 per cent – were deemed ‘excellent’ in this regard.

The issue compounds when you consider that almost half of the leaders who scored ‘average’ – 44 per cent – admit they have suffered a major security breach. Major security breaches that compromised at least half a million records directly related to their clients or customers.

Not only is this troubling from a customer perspective, but it could also leave businesses open to GDPR fines. The need to remain compliant has never been more essential and leaders need to be the first to educate themselves and their teams about its importance.

Happily, Accenture’s report also found some rays of sunshine amongst the dark clouds of cyber leadership.

Companies know cyber is important

The report shows that companies are, on the whole, recognising the need to invest in better cybersecurity measures, even if they are not sure where they should be putting their money.

Accenture’s report noted that, on average, one-tenth (10.9 per cent) of an organisation’s total expenditure is invested in security. This seems to be paying off with companies now facing approximately 22 serious breach attempts per annum, down from 30 in the previous year’s report.

Nearly seven in 10 business leaders (69 per cent) stated that the battle to remain one step ahead of the criminals is ‘unsustainable’, with many referring to the process as a ‘constant battle’.

However, it is very clear that nearly all businesses are concerned about the future of cyber security. Nearly seven in 10 business leaders (69 per cent) stated that the battle to remain one step ahead of the criminals is ‘unsustainable’, with many referring to the process as a ‘constant battle’.

Remaining safe online is certainly a challenge, but with the right guidance, and by utilising security that protects what matters most to your business, you will be in the best possible shape to prevent data breaches, while keeping costs to a minimum.

Cyber Essentials, a certification process that aims to help small businesses around the UK improve their safety credentials without having to spend an exorbitant amount of money, can help your company remain on track in terms of safety, and can also ensure that all certification needs are met.

Want to know more about how we can help, or need to discover where you might be at risk? We offer an easy path to Cyber Essentials and Cyber Essentials Plus certifications and 24/7 protection through CyberSmart Active Protect.

Get in touch today us today.