New International Research of Cyber Readiness During the Pandemic Reveals Security Gaps in South Africa

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Johannesburg, 28 September 2020 – In line with cyber protection company, Acronis, announcing the release of Acronis Cyber Protect 15, the just-released Acronis Cyber Readiness Report revealed that South Africa was one of five countries that experienced almost twice as many malware attacks than the global average.

The survey covered 13,400 global companies and remote workers in 17 countries, including SouthAfrica in the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 31% of companies reported daily cyberattacks and half (50%) were targeted at least once a week, including in July when a leading manufacturer of GPS technologies allegedly paid $10 million in aWastedLocker ransomware attack.

Acronis Cyber Protection Operating Centers (CPOCs) found that 35% of customer endpoints wereexposed to malware attacks that were still getting through before the deployment of Acronis Cyber Protect.

Acronis 09 Peter FRENCH, Synapsys

Acronis Cyber Protect 15 integrates backup, disaster recovery, next-generation anti-malware, cybersecurity, and endpoint management tools into a single solution. This one-of-a-kind integration eliminates the complexity of ensuring an organisation’s cybersecurity, while improvingits data recovery posture and enabling greater productivity. The new product comes at a time when it is common knowledge that businesses are struggling to safeguard their data and infrastructure against the risks of the new remote work landscape.

The Acronis report reveals that hackers targeting remote workers, phishing, distributed denial of service (DDoS), and videoconferencing attacks are the most common. 39% of companies have encountered videoconferencing attacks as workers rely on apps like Zoom, Cisco Webex, and Microsoft Teams. Cisco recently revealed a vulnerability in its Webex app that could allow attackers to open, read and steal potentially valuable or damaging content.

“Videoconferencing protection prevents the exploitation of apps like Zoom, Webex, and Microsoft Teams. In fact, Acronis Cyber Protect prevented code execution exploits in Webex before it was patched by Cisco,” according to Serguei ‘SB’ Beloussov, founder and CEO of Acronis. “Based on the current cyberattack rate, theunique integration of backup and cybersecurity enables Acronis Cyber Protect to prevent an estimated $150 million in direct losses for its customers each year.”

“The challenge for organisations is that managing the protection of data across the company network and all of those new devices using a stack of different solutions is expensive, time-consuming and complicated. The lack of integration also creates gaps in the organisation’s defenses that cybercriminals are exploiting,” he said.

Peter French, Managing Director at Synapsys, distributor of Acronis cyber protection in Africa, added: “This new product comes at the right time – businesses are struggling to safeguard their data and infrastructure against the risks of the new remote work landscape.”

Phishing attacks are occurring at historic levels, which is not surprising since the report found only 2% of companies consider URL filtering when evaluating a cybersecurity solution. That oversight leaves remote workers vulnerable to phishing sites – Acronis CPOCs discovered that approximately 10% of users clicked on malicious websites in May, June, and July.

The modern cyber landscape demands modern protection
“The cyberthreat landscape has changed dramatically during the past few years, and in the last sixmonths in particular. Traditional stand-alone antivirus and backup solutions are unable to protect against modern cyberthreats,” Mr Beloussov said. “Organisations that modernise their stack with integrated data protection and cybersecurity not only gain greater security, they lower their costs and improve efficiencies. The automation and streamlined management of Acronis Cyber Protect 15 means any business can decrease their risk, avoid downtime, and increase their IT team’s productivity.”

“10% of users might click on malicious links that lead to phishing attacks, but the URL filtering in AcronisCyber Protect blocked all of those sites – protecting the users, their devices, and their company’s data.”

“Testing by independent cybersecurity labs such as AV-Test and Virus Bulletin shows that AcronisCyber Protect’s antimalware detects 100% of malware attacks with zero false positives. If the GPS manufacturer had Acronis Cyber Protect, it would never have paid a $10 million ransom,” Mr Beloussov noted.

The future of protection
“The comprehensive cyber protection delivered by Acronis Cyber Protect will continue to be vital in the post-pandemic landscape. With 88% of the remote workers surveyed by Acronis expecting to work from home to some extent even after the pandemic ends, ensuring their protection and cybersecurity will require the kind of integration and automation only found in Acronis Cyber Protect 15,” he added.

The benefits to businesses are already being lauded by organisations who have tried Acronis Cyber Protect 15. HomeBuys.com’s Network Administrator Jorge Alexandres noted: “Being able to bring together backup and restore, with remote desktop, patch management, and antimalware into a single tool provides a lot of value. Instead of using two or three tools, having a single tool with a single console is the way to go.”

About Acronis
Acronis unifies data protection and cybersecurity to deliver integrated, automated cyber protection that solves the safety, accessibility, privacy, authenticity, and security (SAPAS) challengesof the modern digital world. With flexible deployment models that fit the demands of service providers and IT professionals, Acronis provides superior cyber protection for data, applications, and systems with innovative next-generation antivirus, backup, disaster recovery, and endpoint protection management solutions. With award-winning AI-based antimalware and blockchain-based data authentication technologies, Acronis protects any environment – from cloud to hybrid toon-premises – at a low and predictable cost.
Founded in Singapore in 2003 and incorporated in Switzerland in 2008, Acronis now has more than1,500 employees in 33 locations in 18 countries. Its solutions are trusted by more than 5.5 million home users and 500,000 companies, including 100% of the Fortune 1000, and top-tier professional sports teams. Acronis products are available through 50,000 partners and service providers in over 150 countries in more than 40 languages.

Download The report by Acronis

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New International Research of Cyber Readiness During the Pandemic Reveals Security Gaps in South Africa