IT Providers are Increasingly Relied Upon for Cybersecurity Counsel
IT Providers are Increasingly Relied Upon for Cybersecurity Counsel

Image: Andras Vas (unsplash)

Recent findings indicate that 61% of Small and Medium-sized Businesses (SMBs) suffered a successful cyberattack within the past year, as disclosed by BlackFog. The comprehensive research which scrutinized the cybersecurity implications for organizations across the US and UK also brought to light the escalating necessity to collaborate with trustworthy partners to combat their security obstacles.

The study also showcased the trend of repeated victimization for businesses, with 87% of IT decision makers affirming that they had fallen prey to at least two successful onslaughts within the previous year. The average number of successful data breaches, malware or ransomware attacks causing network disruptions was approximately five per organization.

Notably for SMBs, the principal aftermath of an attack was operational downtime, which was experienced by 58% of the surveyed parties. The victorious attacks also inflicted a negative blow to customer trust and loyalty with a third of the total respondents confessing that these occurrences led to customer attrition. Alarmingly, a loss of customer data was reported by 39% of the impacted organizations.

BlackFog’s CEO, Dr. Darren Williams, pointed out that cybercriminals naturally target organizations with minimal protection which primarily includes small to medium-sized businesses.

Dr. Williams further stressed the crucial need for organizations to prioritize the protection of their most critical business asset – their data – given that 89% of all attacks involve some degree of data exfiltration.

The escalating necessity for trustworthy partners

The significant business implications of cyberattacks underscore a burgeoning opportunity for service providers to aid and counsel their customers.

When looking for recommendations on new security solutions, providers or channel partners’ views held a higher regard than those of peers among decision-makers. To be precise, 26% of respondents held the opinions of providers and partners in higher esteem compared to their company colleagues (21%), analysts (16%) and peers in other organizations (10%).

In addition to the fundamental findings on collaborations with external providers, the research also unearthed the following:

  • A substantial 69% of respondents affirmed that they were more likely to seek advice on new cybersecurity solutions from their partner compared to the previous year.
  • Knowledge about cyber threats was identified as the primary challenge in effective protection by 41% of respondents. This fact highlights the critical role that service providers and partners must play in providing access to vital information and expertise.
  • A majority of 87% of respondents felt that their IT providers were devoted to comprehending their cybersecurity challenges. However, a mere 39% of respondents felt that they had a full grasp of all their challenges.

When choosing a managed security provider, high-security standards were the primary determining factor for 38% of respondents.

Dr. Williams reiterated the immense opportunity for solution providers and partners to establish new associations in the market as SMBs grapple with an influx of escalating cybersecurity threats. He emphasized the critical role of MSPs as trusted partners, given their responsibility to safeguard their client’s data from extortion.

Dr. Williams concluded by saying that the traditional defensive-based approaches are insufficient in tackling today’s polymorphic attacks, which primarily employ data exfiltration as their weapon of choice.