Blog How much do cyber attacks really cost?
Alex Lloyd February 20, 2018

How much do cyber attacks really cost?

Along with an unprecedented rise in cybercrime, cybersecurity costs have also increased. Cyber attacks result in billions of dollars worth of damage every year, and as the multitude of cyber attacks in 2017 proves, things are only going to get pricier. Here’s how much cyber attacks cost.

Businesses lose an average of $1.3 million per data breach

In 2017, cybersecurity company Kaspersky Labs reported that the average cost of one data breach for large businesses was $1.3 million—almost a 10% increase from 2016, which was tagged at $1.2 million.

Meanwhile, the cost of cybersecurity breaches for small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) was pegged at around $117,000. This is still a significant amount, considering that SMEs tend not to have a wealth of resources.

Millions of dollars are allocated to fight cybercrime

Kaspersky Labs revealed that organizations cough up millions of dollars for their information security infrastructures, with government bodies and financial institutions spending the most. On average, their yearly budget for cybersecurity reaches $5 million.

Other big spenders include telecommunications providers, IT companies, and the energy sector. They have an annual cybersecurity expenditure of at least $3 million.

Damage from ransomware reached $5 billion

Last year, the global economy spent a total of $5 billion on ransomware attacks alone. To compare, the cost of ransomware attacks worldwide in 2015 was $325 million. That’s an enormous hike of nearly 1,500%.

Cybersecurity experts say that this surge is a direct result of the growing number of attacks. In 2017, research showed that businesses got hit by ransomware every 40 seconds.

The U.S. is a prime target for ransomware

Although attacks have increased worldwide, the U.S. is still the preferred target of cybercriminals when it comes to ransomware. Why? In a word—profits. According to a report by Symantec, 64% of Americans paid the ransomware, in contrast to only 34% in every other part of the world.

The healthcare industry is most susceptible

Among all the different industries targeted by cybercriminals, healthcare seems to be one of (if not the) most vulnerable. Healthcare providers around the world deal with millions upon millions of patients each day, which translates to massive amounts of confidential patient information. Add to this the fact that cybersecurity in healthcare tends to be minimal and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.

In 2017, reports indicated 75% of the entire healthcare industry was hit with malware. In addition to that, it is estimated ransomware attacks on healthcare would increase four-fold by 2020.

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About Alex Lloyd

Alex Lloyd heads AnchorFree's content department. Before joining the team, he was a former professional race car driver—competing in the Indianapolis 500 four times—and has spent the past decade writing content for major publications such as Yahoo and CNN.

View all posts by Alex Lloyd
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