Feeds

Human error blamed for most security breaches

People, huh!

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

People making mistakes are the major source of security breaches.

Eight-four per cent of organisations quizzed in a survey out today blamed human error "either wholly or in part" for their last major security breach. Last year, human error was cited as the cause of 63 per cent of security breaches. So, if anything, the problem is getting worse.

The second annual study by CompTIA, the Computing Technology Industry Association, also discovered that the number of security incidents reported by organisations grew despite higher spending on preventative measures and greater security awareness.

Fifty-eight per cent surveyed experienced at least one major IT security breach - defined as one that caused real harm, resulted in the loss of confidential information or interrupted business operations - in the last six months. That's up significantly from last year (38 per cent).

At the same time, the nearly 900 organizations that took part categorised the severity level of recent security breaches as "minimally severe", lower than a year ago. CompTIA reckons better training and preparation have limited the impact of security SNAFUs.

Education, education, education

The survey found companies with one-quarter of more of their IT staff trained in security are less likely (46.3 percent) to have had a departmental security breach than those with less than one-quarter of their IT staff trained in security (66.0 percent). Training and certification helps improved risk identification, increased awareness and boost the ability of an organisation to respond more rapidly to problems.

Eighty per cent of those who have invested in staff security training felt that their security had improved. Which is nice - but what about the other 20 per cent?

Security policies still lacking

CompTIA's survey also showed up perennial problems. Only half of respondents had a written security policy in place. Just over half (56.5 per cent) have a disaster recovery plan in place. Bigger organisations fared better, with 75 per cent having a security policy. Which leaves one in four without a security game plan.

IT security policies are more common in the financial services industry (62 per cent), government (58 per cent) and education (41 per cent) sectors. The IT industry itself is the least likely to have security policies - only 35 per cent do, according to the survey. This factor help explain why IT companies are often among the worst hit by viral outbreaks (e.g. Dell and FunLove, Code Red and Microsoft and Lucent etc) ®

Related stories

People are the biggest security risk
Security: educating the unwashed masses
Free IT training for London SMEs

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Goog says patch⁵⁰ your Chrome
64-bit browser loads cat vids FIFTEEN PERCENT faster!
JLaw, Kate Upton EXPOSED in celeb nude pics hack
100 women victimised as Apple iCloud accounts reportedly popped
Rubbish WPS config sees WiFi router keys popped in seconds
Another day, another way in to your home router
NIST to sysadmins: clean up your SSH mess
Too many keys, too badly managed
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
Researchers camouflage haxxor traps with fake application traffic
Honeypots sweetened to resemble actual workloads, complete with 'secure' logins
Attack flogged through shiny-clicky social media buttons
66,000 users popped by malicious Flash fudging add-on
New Snowden leak: How NSA shared 850-billion-plus metadata records
'Federated search' spaffed info all over Five Eyes chums
Three quarters of South Korea popped in online gaming raids
Records used to plunder game items, sold off to low lifes
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.