Ransomware threats boosting awareness, but not cyber security careers

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A mere 16 percent of IT security professionals think their bosses and company boards have taken a greater interest in their roles as a result of the WannaCry and NotPetya cyber attacks of 2017, according to research conducted by security companies Unified Security Management and AlienVault.

The research is based on a survey of 233 IT professionals worldwide about how their roles have changed following these high-profile attacks, and found that just 14 percent of the respondents have had their budgets for cyber security increased. Only one fifth (20 percent) have been able to implement changes or projects that were previously put on hold.

“WannaCry and NotPetya are generally believed to have marked a turning point in cyber awareness, but the reality on the ground paints a different picture,” said Javvad Malik, security advocate at AlienVault. “Destructive malware poses existential threats to companies across all industries and can no longer be ignored. To improve our cyber resilience, corporate strategy needs to be developed that covers how to plan for, detect, mitigate and recover from such destructive attacks.”

Many IT teams have worked hard to strengthen their organization’s cyber security in the wake of these attacks, the study said. Two-thirds (66 percent) are more up-to-date with patching than they were previously, and half said they are now using threat intelligence more regularly to stay ahead of emerging threats. In addition, 58 percent conducted a review of their organization’s cyber security posture following the attacks.

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