A recent report from Lloyd's highlights the severity of data breaches with 92 per cent of respondents stating that they have suffered a security breach in the past five years. This demonstrates the need for an urgent industry shift away from outdated means of authentication to more secure alternatives, argues Gideon Wilkins, VP of Sales and Marketing at Secure Cloudlink.
The report on what European businesses are doing to tackle cyber security surveyed 346 senior business decision-makers from large organisations across Europe. Despite the high proportion of recipients stating that they had suffered a data breach, only 42 per cent were worried about becoming subject to another breach in the future. This points to a complacency towards cyber security and a lack of understanding as to what it takes in order to navigate today's increasingly vulnerable security landscape.
Gideon Wilkins, VP of Sales and Marketing at Secure Cloudlink, commented: "With such a high proportion of companies falling victim to data breaches and the fact that TalkTalk has been fined a record £400,000, for a cyber-attack that took place last year, should be the wake-up call organisations need to reassess their approach to security.
Clearly there is a chink in the armour and this manifests in the form of the password as a means of authentication. We've seen time and time again that both individuals and large groups are vulnerable to password theft and organisations need to be making major efforts to address this head on. In order to maintain the strict control necessary over applications and the data that flows through their organisations, IT leaders need to be adopting tools that address the major security issues at hand instead of continuing to operate under a system of increasing password adoption.
"The use of applications across organisations is more prolific than ever, presenting the need to balance productivity and security. Recent developments include single sign-on, password managers, the use of biometrics and hashing. While the user experience is improved, this doesn't remove the use and transmission of passwords and credentials behind the scenes.
"There continues to be an inordinately high number of data breaches, which only goes to reinforce that security vendors and IT departments are continuing to ignore the real problem that we face. Designs that were once suitable have not been appropriately updated to keep up the pace with today's increasingly digital economy. The password security system is a vulnerable protocol and the quicker we look for solutions that address this, the better chance we have of protecting ourselves from cybercrime. With the effectiveness of passwords continuing to deteriorate, any organisations that wants to protect itself and maintain control over its applications and data should look to new and unique alternatives that involve no passwords at all," concludes Wilkins.