By Emma Okonji
Cybercrime has become the greatest threat to companies and countries globally, just as about 54 per cent of companies globally experience at least one cyberattack every year.
In Nigeria, the rate of cyberattack on organisations is on the rise, as 60 per cent of firms suffer cyberattack every year, according to a recent survey jointly carried out by Sophos Nigeria Limited and Sidmach Technologies.
According to the report, only 38 per cent of global organisations claim they have the infrastructure to handle a sophisticated cyber-attack, yet up to 43 per cent of cyberattack is targeted at small and medium scale enterprises (SMEs). But, it disclosed that only 14 per cent of these SMEs have effective infrastructure to mitigate cyber risks, vulnerabilities and attacks.
The figures showing the rate of attacks were revealed at a one-day Sidmach/Sophos Lunch and Learn event, which held in Lagos recently.
According to the Country Manager of Sophos Nigeria, Mr. Jimi Falaiye, businesses were often concerned about security of data, but unfortunately, 95 per cent of security breaches were caused by human error.
“Cyber-criminals and hackers will infiltrate your company through your weakest link, which is almost never known in the Information Technology (IT) department,” he said, adding that it takes organisations an average of 191 days to identify data breaches.
He further revealed that 92.4 per cent of malwares are delivered via email, even as total cost for cybercrime committed globally added up to over $1 trillion dollars in 2018.
Sharing more facts about cybercrimes, particularly as ransomware affects Small and Medium Businesses (SMBs) in Nigeria, the Market Intelligence and Research Analyst at Sidmach Technologies Nigeria Limited, Nathanael Odofin, said 22 per cent of organisations had to cease business operations immediately because of ransomware.
The report revealed that 81 per cent businesses have experienced ransomware; 66mer cent have suffered a data breach and 35 per cent were victims of ransomware.
It however said anti-virus was not enough to mitigate such attacks because most of them are reactive in nature.
“Antivirus protects you from classic dangers like known viruses, Trojans, and worms – ‘known’ being the operative word here. Antivirus cannot protect without a signature database for detection.
“But most antivirus programs are reactive. A study has found that a typical antivirus will only stop 30-50 per cent of new malware when it first appears. Unless the antivirus software has seen a particular threat in the past, it won’t necessarily protect your computer,” Odofin said.
Referring to Verizon Data Breach Investigation Report, he reminded businesses in Nigeria that over half of all cyber breaches in 2017 included the use of malware. He described malware activities as stealing credit card details, revealing passwords and spreading spam.
“This is why the fortification of antivirus merely is not enough. You need to bolster this layer of defence with another layer of an anti-malware,” Odofin added.
The organisers advised participants and other organisations in Nigeria to deploy software security solutions, which Sophos has developed to keep a very close eye on what is happening inside computer and network systems, by blocking both known and unknown malware threats and safeguards against any potential harmful programs.
The Managing Director of Sidmach Technologies, Mr. Peter Arogundade, said the event was aimed at assisting IT experts in different organisations to understand cost effective security dynamics, and tools that mitigate latest threats, while receiving insights to have complete visibility and control of their IT Infrastructure.
The MD, who spoke through the Head of Marketing at Sidmach, Olanrewaju Adelanwa, described the sessions as crucial as they offered the experts new perspective on better architectures for end-to-end networks threats management with a one-stop-solution that Sophos brings.