Thursday 07 Dec 2023
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KUALA LUMPUR (March 22): Only 16% of organisations in Malaysia have the "mature" level of readiness needed to be resilient against today’s modern cybersecurity risks, according to Nasdaq-listed Cisco.

In a statement on Wednesday (March 22), the digital communications technology conglomerate in its first-ever Cybersecurity Readiness Index highlighted where businesses are doing well, and where cybersecurity readiness gaps will widen if global business and security leaders don’t take action.

It said organisations had moved from an operating model that was largely static — where people operated from single devices from one location, connecting to a static network — to a hybrid world in which they increasingly operate from multiple devices in multiple locations, connect to multiple networks, access applications in the cloud and on the go, and generate enormous amount of data.

Cisco said this presents new and unique cybersecurity challenges for companies.

The report measures the readiness of companies to maintain cybersecurity resilience against modern threats.

These measures cover five core pillars that form the baseline of required defences — identity, devices, network, application workloads, and data, and encompass 19 different solutions within the pillars.

Conducted by an independent third-party, the double-blind survey asked 6,700 private-sector cybersecurity leaders across 27 markets to indicate which of these solutions they had deployed and the stage of deployment. Companies were then classified into four stages of increasing readiness — from beginner to formative, progressive and mature.

Cisco said the readiness gap is telling, not least because 95% respondents said they expect a cybersecurity incident to disrupt their business in the next 12 to 24 months. The cost of being unprepared can be substantial, as 55% of respondents said they had a cybersecurity incident in the last 12 months, and 35% of those affected said it cost them at least US$500,000 (RM2.24 million).

Cisco executive vice-president and general manager of security and collaboration executive Jeetu Patel said: “The move to a hybrid world has fundamentally changed the landscape for companies, and created even greater cybersecurity complexity.

“Organisations must stop approaching defence with a mix of point tools and instead, consider integrated platforms to achieve security resilience while reducing complexity,”

“Only then will businesses be able to close the cybersecurity readiness gap,” Patel said.

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