PYMNTS MonitorEdge May 2024

Report: Cyber Threats Growing at 90% of Companies

cybersecurity, data protection, AI

For American businesses, the threat of cyberattacks continues to grow.

Ninety percent of companies say their cybersecurity risks increased in the last year, according to a survey of compliance professionals published Monday (May 13) by The Wall Street Journal (WSJ).

Nearly all mid-sized businesses — defined in the report as having between $50 million and $1 billion in revenue — said they felt cyber threats had risen.

WSJ said it surveyed roughly 300 compliance professionals over four weeks between February and March, most of them in the United States. A little more than a third worked in financial services, while around 13% were in professional and business services, and approximately 9% were in the technology space.

A series of high-profile cyberattacks in recent months have underlined the threat facing businesses, the report noted. These include a breach last summer at MGM Resorts’ hotel and casino system, as well as February’s attack on UnitedHealth Group’s Change Healthcare business, which hamstrung portions of the American healthcare system.

Incidents like these — as well as a more recent data breach at Dell — underline the cost of lax cybersecurity standards, PYMNTS wrote last week.

“To mitigate the risk of cyberattacks, companies must develop a robust cybersecurity framework that encompasses not only the latest technological defenses but also a strong emphasis on human factors,” the report said. “Regular training programs, rigorous security protocols, and a culture of vigilance among employees can enhance an organization’s ability to defend against cyber threats.”

Meanwhile, the PYMNTS Intelligence report “Fraud Management in Online Transactions”  showed that 82% of eCommerce merchants suffered cyberattacks or data breaches in the last year. Forty-seven percent of those businesses had lost both revenue and customers due to fraud in the previous 12 months, while 68% also saw a drop in customer satisfaction, which they put down to security breaches.

“It is little wonder then that 95% of eCommerce merchants said they have either begun revamping their anti-fraud capabilities or are committed to doing so soon,” PYMNTS wrote. “Overall, 41% have already begun enhancing their anti-fraud protections while another 54% plan to do so within the year. Only about 5% plan to but lack a timeline.”