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One in Three Mid-Market UK Organizations Suffered from Attacker Outages in 2021

21% of organizations admitted they were forced to pay hackers to put an end to the attack.


A third of mid-market UK organizations hit by cyberattacks in 2021 suffered breakdowns that knocked them offline for more than a day, a new research from cybersecurity firm Censornet revealed.

The survey discloses that more than one in five (21%) were forced to pay attackers to put an end to the attack, with the average pay-out amounting to £144,000 and 7% handing over more than £500,000. As a result, the primary demand for cybersecurity in 2022 was to see security vendors open up traditionally closed point products to enable an automated response to cyberattacks.

The report, which surveyed 200 IT decision-makers across the UK, covering ten different industries, found that ransomware was particularly problematic, as more workers work from home.

“For the UK mid-market, the cybersecurity situation is serious. The financial and reputational cost of cybercrime is rising, putting more pressure on overwhelmed professionals, who are tackling hundreds of alerts a day from siloed point products,” said Ed Macnair, CEO at Censornet. Organizations must work smarter, not harder. Only when security systems work seamlessly together, faster than humanly possible, will we see the needle begin to move in the right direction.”

Nearly half of mid-market organizations participating in the survey said they hadn’t purchased cybersecurity products specifically manufactured to guard against threats for hybrid and remote workers. As a result, 76% of organizations said they plan to invest in a cloud-based security platform that allows their security products to autonomously share security event data to better protect their organization. 

In response to the challenges that organizations are facing, respondents indicated a clear need for fundamental change in the way cybersecurity is designed and run over the next year. 46% want security vendors to open up traditionally closed point products to enable an automated response to cyber threats.

Last week, Slovak cybersecurity firm ESET published a separate report revealing that London has the highest cybercrime rate in the UK, with 5,258 reports in total followed by the West Midlands at 1,242. Cumbria was the area with the lowest cybercrime, with only 174 reports, followed by Cleveland 194 and Dyfed-Powys 213. 

In its report, ESET researchers discovered an overall decline of 2.97% in cybercrime in 2021. The most common form of cybercrime for 2021 was social media and email hacking, which accounted for 53.1% of reports. This was followed by computer viruses, which accounted for 28% of reports.
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