Companies ‘unable to handle big data’


June 20, 2013

There are many security challenges facing modern day organisations, but it seems that keeping big data safe is one of the most prominent.

This is according to a new study from McAfee entitled Needle in a Datastack, which indicated that businesses are vulnerable to security breaches because they do not know how to analyse or store big data.

One of the most effective defences to a cyber attack is the ability to detect a breach as quickly as possible – just 35 per cent of the firms polled said they had the resources to do this.

In fact, 22 per cent revealed they would need a day to identify a breach, while five per cent warned that it could take them up to a week.

McAfee noted that the severity of threats is increasing – as well as how frequently they occur – making it more important than ever for businesses to reassess their vulnerability management.

Not only do companies need to carry out risk-based analysis and modelling, but there is also a need for them to use a data management system to offer back-up and real-time analytics.

Recognising threats in real time could make the difference between bouncing back from an attack and not being able to, so McAfee believes that a proactive approach to dealing with threats is essential.

Out of the companies questioned, 73 per cent said they could gain access to their security status, while 74 per cent were confident they could identify a real-time insider threat.

Showing just how prominent security threats are, 58 per cent of organisations said they had suffered a breach within the past 12 months – just 24 per cent, however, had recognised it within minutes.

When identifying the source of the breach, only 14 per cent were able to do so within minutes, while a third took a day to find out what had happened.

In 16 per cent of situations, analysts spent a week trying to decipher where the attack had originated from.

Mike Fey, executive vice-president and worldwide chief technology officer at McAfee, said: "If you're in a fight, you need to know that while it's happening, not after the fact.

"This study has shown what we've long suspected – that far too few organisations have real-time access to the simple question 'am I being breached?' Only by knowing this, can you stop it from happening."

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