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The Green Sheet Online Edition

April 23, 2012 • Issue 12:04:02

Research Rundown

A global perspective on data breach trends

Trustwave released key findings and recommendations in its annual report on global data breach and security trends. Report analysis included investigations, research and client engagements based on 300 data breach investigations and 2,000 penetration tests conducted by the Trustwave SpiderLabs advanced security team during 2011.

"In 2011, we performed 42 percent more data breach investigations and assembled a thorough study on business password practices," said Nicholas J. Percoco, Senior Vice President and head of SpiderLabs. "The information we have gathered highlights security trends and risks that businesses should address in 2012."

Key report findings include:

  • Customer records accounted for 89 percent of breached data investigated.
  • The Asia-Pacific region comprised a larger share of data breach investigations in 2011.
  • Only 16 percent of victimized organizations detected breaches internally.
  • 84 percent of victimized organizations relied on an external entity for breach detection.
  • Attackers had an average 173.5 days' access to data before external entities detected it.

For a second consecutive year, the report identified the food and beverage industry as the top target for cyber-criminal activity, accounting for nearly 44 percent of data breach investigations. Franchise businesses, which accounted for more than a third of SpiderLabs' 2011 breach investigations, is expected to be the business model most at risk for breaches in 2012, researchers noted.

"Any organization can be a target, but as detailed in our report findings, those most susceptible are businesses that maintain customer records or that consumers frequent most, including restaurants, retail stores and hotels," Percoco said.

For a list of security recommendations and to download a complimentary copy of the Trustwave 2012 Global Security Report, visit :

Spotlight on online fraud

American Express Co. research indicates adoption of emerging payments will be determined primarily by millennials (consumers 18 to 24 years old) and reliable security. Of the millennials surveyed, 52 percent said they are likely to try new payment technologies, more than any other age group studied.

Consumer feedback

Source: AmEx and Ipsos Research: Consumers on the Future of Payments: Millennials to Lead Adoption & Security Is King

E-commerce trend spotting

A Forrester Research report, U.S. Online Retail Forecast, 2011 to 2016, provides an analysis of trends expected to drive consumers online to spend $327 billion annually by 2016, up from $200 billion in 2011. Underlying trends identified include higher percentage of sales from existing online shoppers, dominance of the fourth quarter cyber-season, growth of online loyalty programs and flash sales sites, and tablet devices as the preferred choice among mobile shoppers.

Data breach surge in 2011

The 2012 Data Breach Investigations Report by Verizon Wireless offers a global analysis of data breach investigations, which escalated in 2011 to 885 incidents compromising 174 million records, the second highest on record since the company began tracking data in 2004. The report covers threats to businesses, including hacking, which comprised 81 percent of breaches investigated.

Mobile as an enterprise strategy

An Aberdeen Group report, Elevating Mobile Commerce as an Enterprise-Wide Strategy, the sixth in a series on mobile and tablet commerce trends, explores mobile commerce from within and outside the physical store. In order to reach "critical mass" usage, the study suggests retail localization and augmentation of mobile usage across departments. It also addresses challenges to mobile alignment initiatives and strategies for overcoming roadblocks.

end of article

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