Splunk State of Security 2021 Report Highlights Emerging Enterprise Security Priorities

Obscure Technologies, cyber security specialist and distributor of Splunk in South Africa, is hosting a series of events that demonstrate the drive to digitisation. The forthcoming October event will disclose the results of research – The State of Security 2021 report – a global survey of 535 security leaders in nine leading economies across multiple industries by research firm Enterprise Strategy Group, on behalf of Splunk.

The survey was conducted in February of this year – the month that marked the one year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic and only two months after the exposure of the now notorious SolarWinds hacks.

Justin Lee, Managing Director, Obscure Technologies, says the report will reveal IT security leaders’ key strategies for cloud complexity, remote work, and supply chain attacks. “The results highlight how digital firms are structured for cloud, the role of observability, how agility aids responsiveness, customer experience versus security trade-offs, and the challenges of scaling and deploying new functionality fast,” says Mr. Lee.

The research reveals that 84% of the organisations polled suffered a significant security incident in the past two years. “This is particularly concerning when we note that most organisations prefer to keep breaches under wraps.

“The report also found that the costs and impacts of attacks were far reaching, including the need for significant time and personnel resources allocated to manage and recover from the incident; lost productivity; disruption of applications, systems, and business processes; breaches of confidential data; employees terminated or prosecuted; and criminal investigations,” notes Mr. Lee.

Achieving consistency of controls and policies, and the cost and complexity of using multiple security controls, are recorded in the report to be among the top security challenges facing global midmarket and enterprise organisations. Cloud complexity is the next great security challenge, the report predicts, noting that rising cloud adoption is driving security investment, with 88% of organisations increasing their security spending.

“Security is a data problem, Data is what you are protecting.”

The report highlights 2021’s challenges as: cloud complexity and the expansion of remote work

Hybrid visibility is difficult enough with one cloud service provider. That may soon seem like the good old days.

  • 75% of cloud infrastructure users are multicloud today.
  • 87% expect to use multiple cloud service providers two years from now.
  • 76% of respondents say that remote workers are harder to secure.
  • 53% say attacks have increased during the pandemic.
  • 12% call it a significant increase.

“In the past two years, the move to remote work and rapid adoption of cloud have only served to extend networks and increase the risks organisations face. It has become a challenge, along with the new complexity of managing multicloud environments with different control planes.  Additionally, organisations globally – and even more so in South Africa – are grappling with a severe shortage of specialised IT security skills,” says Mr. Lee.

“Rising cloud adoption is the top issue driving security investment.”

With 84% of organisations reporting a significant security incident in the past two years it is not surprising that 78% of companies expect another SolarWinds-style supply chain attack with 88% of organisations surveyed saying they are increasing security spending and 35% are increasing it considerably.

“These are telling statistics that endorse our belief that the only way to overcome these challenges is to embed security throughout the enterprise, viewing it as a revenue generator thanks to its ability to build trust and support business. In addition, organisations need to be stepping up their investments in AI, machine learning and automation to step up their security posture,” adds Mr. Lee.

“Many security leaders are taking action to keep up with intensifying security challenges. More spending and more technology are only as good as the strategies behind them, so a focus on cloud complexity, with better analytics and a clearer view of your data, is essential. Here is a summary of key recommendations, based on the research.”

Modernize the SOC.

               Zero trust.

               Security operations process automation.

               Modernise your security information and event management (SIEM).

              Training and staffing.

Set your sights on a consolidated view of data.

Rethink your approach to supply chain threats.

Press your collaborative advantage.

South African business executives will participate in a panel discussion moderated by Prof Herman Singh, CEO of Future Advisory, on the changing security risks and priorities for businesses today.

The discussion, the second in the Obscure Technologies series of events, will take place on Wednesday 6th October.