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Report finds 90% of security pros have suffered damage to environments from cyberattacks

Report finds 90% of security pros have suffered damage to environments from cyberattacks

Enterprise SecurityTop Stories

A report by the Ponemon Institute for Tenable finds 62% of respondents said their organisations have suffered multiple attacks.

Tenable, the cyber exposure company, has released the ‘Cybersecurity in Operational Technology: 7 Insights You Need to Know’ report, an independent study by the Ponemon Institute.

The study identifies the true extent of cyberattacks experienced by critical infrastructure operators – professionals in industries using industrial control systems (ICS) and operational technology (OT). It found that 90% of respondents stated their environments had been damaged by at least one cyberattack over the past two years, with 62% experiencing two or more attacks.

Key highlights from the study include:

  • Insufficient visibility into the attack surface: 80% of respondents cited lack of visibility into the attack surface, knowing what systems are part of their IT environments, as the number one issue in their inability to prevent business-impacting cyberattacks.
  • Inadequate staffing and manual processes limit vulnerability management: Lack of personnel and a reliance on manual processes were cited by 61% and 55% of respondents respectively as major obstacles in their ability to assess and remediate vulnerabilities.
  • C-suite buy-in is key: 70% of respondents view increasing communication with executives and board members as one of their governance priorities for 2019.

The convergence of IT and OT is a reality in today’s digital era. But this convergence has connected once-isolated OT systems to a variety of attack paths. This Ponemon study, based entirely on the self-reported experiences and observations of ICS and OT experts themselves, confirms that the threats to critical infrastructure are real, severe and ongoing.

“OT professionals have spoken – the people who manage critical systems such as manufacturing plants and transportation almost unanimously state that they are fighting-off cyberattacks on a regular basis,” said Eitan Goldstein, senior director of strategic initiatives, Tenable.

“Organisations need visibility into their converged IT/OT environments to not only identify where vulnerabilities exist but also prioritise which to remediate first. The converged IT/OT cyber problem is one that cybersecurity and critical infrastructure teams must face together.”

For more information, read the full Cybersecurity in Operational Technology: 7 Insights You Need to Know report.

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