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The Biggest Cybersecurity Threat? Human Behavior

The Biggest Cybersecurity Threat? Human Behavior


Human behavior is nearly unanimous choice as top risk

As risks associated with cyber attacks continue to grow in number and complexity, one thing remains constant: more often than not, the biggest security threat in an organization is still human behavior.

According to a recent report from Nuix, 97 percent of cybersecurity executives feel that human behavior is the biggest security threat in their organizations. The software firm’s third annual Defending Data Report revealed this statistic, which was a bump up from the 93 percent mark seen in 2015.

There has been a steady increase in concern since 2014. Two years earlier, in 2014, 88 percent of executives labeled human behavior as the biggest threat. About a third of respondents to the Nuix survey admitted being “very concerned” about breaches caused by human vulnerability.

Cybersecurity spending will increase

According to Defending Data Report 2016, 72 percent of cybersecurity executives stated intentions to increase spending that guards against cyber attacks in 2017. For the current year, 79 percent stated that they increased spending on data breach detection.

This mirrors findings from a separate study recently conducted by Cybersecurity Ventures. That study predicted that global costs to defend against cybercrime will exceed $1 trillion from 2017 to 2021.

Other findings

The Nuix study also revealed that slightly more than half of executives–52 percent–spent the most on preventing data breaches in 2016. A little less than half–42 percent–stated their primary spending focus as threat detection.

Slightly more than a quarter of respondents–28 percent–termed cybersecurity spending in their organization as “insufficient.” Lack of senior support and management challenges both surfaced as explanations for the perceived insufficient spending.