Survey: HK firms face 54 new attack attempts per week

Hong Kong firms report an average of 54 new security attack attempts each week, with successful incidents costing them an estimated average of US$159,244, said Check Point that recently announced a report named The Impact of Cybercrime on Businesses.

The estimated monetary loss include variables such as forensic investigation, investments in technology and brand recovery costs, said Tomer Teller, security evangelist and researcher at Check Point.

According to vendor, it surveyed 2,618 c-level executives and IT security administrators in the US, United Kingdom, Germany, Hong Kong, and Brazil for the report. The survey sample represents organizations of all sizes and across multiple industries, including financial, industrial, defense, retail, healthcare and education, the vendor added.

The report says that the majority of Hong Kong respondents indicated financial fraud (68%) as the cybercriminal's primary motivation, followed by the intent to disrupt business operations (35%) and customer data theft (32%).

About 7% of security attacks were estimated to have been driven by political or ideological agendas, Check Point said.

Cybercrime comes in all shapes and forms. About 45% of Hong Kong respondents said DoS attacks were the most serious security cybercrimes experienced in the last two years, followed SQL Injections (39%) and web-based malware (35%), according to Check Point.

While the majority of companies have important security building blocks in place, such as firewall and intrusion prevention solutions, less than half of Hong Kong companies (45%) surveyed have protections to fight botnets and advanced threats.

When asked to rank employee activities that pose the greatest risk, all regions surveyed unanimously cited the use of mobile devices -- including smartphones and tablet PCs -- as the biggest concern, followed by removable media devices, such as USB sticks, and remote access to the network, Check Point said.

There is a shortage of security related training for employees, the survey results indicated. Only 44% of companies say they have current training and awareness programs in place to prevent targeted attacks, Check Point said.

"Cybercriminals are no longer isolated amateurs. They belong to well-structured organizations, often employing highly-skilled hackers to execute targeted attacks, many of whom receive significant amounts of money depending on the region and nature of the attack," said Teller. "Cybercrime has become a business. With bot toolkits for hackers selling today for the mere price of $500, it gives people insight into how big the problem has become, and the importance of implementing preemptive protections to safeguard critical assets."

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