In the fight against cybercrime, Irish businesses need to focus more on innovation, like the creation of teams of counter-hackers, and less on process and protocol, according to RSA, the Security Division of EMC.

Echoing comments made by RSA President Amit Yoran at the recent RSA Conference in San Francisco, Gerry Murray, Country Manager for EMC Ireland, said that large businesses in particular must think outside the box when it comes to cybersecurity.

“The cybercriminals who target specific businesses and individuals are typically highly sophisticated and creative, capable of outsmarting even the most state-of-the-art security tools. They operate outside the rulebook—they have a target and no confining boundaries from which to attack. This makes them notoriously difficult to anticipate and stop.”

Cybercrime is a growing problem at home and abroad. In 2015, Irish businesses reported an average spend of €240,000 on cybersecurity, with nearly half saying they spent more time than before addressing security issues. Global research firm, Gartner, predicts that by 2020, 60% of all information security budgets will be allocated to rapid detection and response—up from less than 10% in 2014.

Mr Murray continued: “For businesses, particularly large ones, protocol can hamper their ability to respond to threats and security breaches in an effective and timely way. To lessen the frequency and impact of attacks and breaches, a two-pronged approach is necessary, combining greater empowerment of IT and security teams with intelligence-driven security software.

“IT and security teams need to be given greater liberty to act on business security in more innovative ways. Businesses essentially need to create teams of counter-hackers who apply the same sort of creative, end-goal thinking that cybercriminals use to make business networks more secure. By fostering efficiency and scalability, businesses will be better placed to respond to threats.

“In conjunction with this, intelligence-driven security software proactively searches for breaches or potential breaches in a business network before they can cause damage. To use an analogy, when compared to the perimeter fence of the conventional firewall, intelligence-driven security is the patrolling guard.

“Basic security hygiene is still vitally important in the workplace, as the majority of security breaches result from absent-mindedness, like accidentally downloading an infected email attachment or failing to update a program when prompted.”

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