Security concerns as report puts IT culture under spotlight

The Information Security Breaches Survey 2006 released by the DTI has highlighted the lack of coherent security procedures in many UK businesses. Although three quarters of UK businesses rate IT Security as a high priority, with protecting customer information becoming increasingly important, worryingly just one firm in eight has IT security qualified staff to put procedures in place.

Jun 2, 2006
By David Howell

The Information Security Breaches Survey 2006 released by the DTI has highlighted the lack of coherent security procedures in many UK businesses. Although three quarters of UK businesses rate IT Security as a high priority, with protecting customer information becoming increasingly important, worryingly just one firm in eight has IT security qualified staff to put procedures in place.

The report ranks security breaches with the average ‘worst incident’ costing £12,000, up by £2,000 since 2004. The financial services sector and telecoms providers appear to be prime targets with several businesses reporting daily attacks. The most obvious and valuable data obtainable from these attacks would be detailed customer information such as credit card and bank details, typically siphoned off by keylogging software.

Corporate Britain is also still oblivious to the threat posed to their reputation and operations by poor access and identity management amongst staff. The DTI survey reports that three fifths do not block staff access to inappropriate websites and only one in six scans outgoing mail for inappropriate content.

Keith Cottenden, Senior Forensic Investigator at CY4OR Computer Forensics, said: “One of the most malicious and real attacks a company faces is from spyware. This software is most likely to enter a company’s computer network through internet downloads and email attachments; simple logic dictates that a free rein as regards to accessing the internet and email will significantly increase the chances of this form of attack.”

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