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Top 10 List of Cybersecurity Facts for 2021

David Eichkorn

If it feels like cybercrime is on the rise, it’s because it truly is. At every turn, it seems we’re hearing about another ransomware attack, disrupted operation or security breach. The latest 2021 cybersecurity facts and findings prove it.

The pandemic only heightened the resolve of many cybercriminals who saw a new opportunity ripe with promise. Suddenly, millions of employees across the globe were thrust into a work-from-home situation, many lacking the network security found at the office. Many were also unfamiliar with proper security protocols, opening the floodgates to nefarious hackers.

Businesses need to be more diligent than ever when it comes to cybersecurity. To better understand the precautions you can take to secure your organization’s networks, it’s important to first know what you’re up against. So we’ve compiled this top 10 list of cybersecurity statistics and digital security facts.

1. SMBs are almost as likely as large corporations to experience a data breach

In the past, small businesses didn’t have to worry as much as larger corporations. Not so any more. That's according to the Verizon 2021 Data Breach Investigations Report. The big victims are often small businesses that lack the people and resources to mitigate the risks of a cyberattack.

2. 58% of companies saw an increase in phishing attacks, and 51% have been impacted by ransomware in the last year.

There are many other startling statistics found in Mimecast’s The State of Email Security report. Namely, email continues to be the number one access point for cybercriminals. This stresses the importance of cybersecurity awareness training for employees.

3. A business will fall victim to a ransomware attack every 11 seconds in 2021

As reported by Cybercrime Magazine, ransomware has reached epidemic proportions. Ransomware takes hold of networks and restricts access to files, often demanding payment in exchange for restoring systems, and threatening to destroy them if ransom isn’t paid.

4. Companies hit with a ransomware attack experience 3 days of downtime, on average.

This is another research finding from Mimecast. When a business experiences a security breach, it doesn’t just impact its workforce. In addition to potential financial losses, there’s the high likelihood that a company will also lose their reputation and trust among customers.

5. Nearly one in four (24%) SMB employees don’t follow proper security guidelines.

As reported by TechRepublic, this phenomenon was only worsened by the increase in remote workers due to the pandemic. Many employees aren’t familiar with using VPNs, opening the door to unauthorized network access and other risks. Since many organizations report the continuation of remote work for at least a portion of their workforces, this statistic likely isn’t shrinking too quickly.


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6. Since the pandemic began, the FBI reported a 300% increase in reported cybercrimes.

This statistic emphasizes just one of the outcomes of employees working remotely and not following proper protocols. It’s yet another fallout of the pandemic, as noted by IMC Grupo.

7. Data breaches in the U.S. cost more than anywhere else in the world, with the average attack costing $8.64 million 

This comes from IBM’s 2020 Cost of a Data Breach Report. The costs of downtime and disruptions to business operations can add up. What is often immeasurable is the damage caused from a tarnished brand reputation and diminished customer loyalty.

8. It takes an average of 280 days to identify and contain a breach

Once again, IBM brings us this staggering statistic. Imagine the damage that hackers could inflict or how much data they could steal if given free reign over your systems? Today’s cyber criminals often fly under the radar and can lurk inside systems for months retrieving sensitive data. It’s important to know the signs your computer’s been hacked.

9. 57% of CIOs say that they increased cybersecurity protections in 2020

One of the top drivers of IT spending in organizations continues to be security and risk management, according to CIO’s 20th annual State of the CIO report. Company leaders must be the driving force behind cybersecurity initiatives and make it a priority within their organizations.

10. 77% of IT professionals surveyed said their organizations do not have a formal cybersecurity incident response plan

That's according to the latest available data from TekMonks. A cyberattack may be the largest threat your organization faces. It’s critical for enterprises to establish a strategy for mitigating the risks and to outline a business continuity plan to address this rising threat.

Want to see how your company is doing? Go through our free, online Cybersecurity Risk Assessment and answer 15 questions to see your score. Once you’ve completed the assessment, reach out to us to explore ways to close any gaps.

Even if you’re a small business with a limited budget, you can achieve enterprise-level security by working with a Managed IT provider like Elevity. We leverage the latest cybersecurity technology to monitor your systems 24/7, and have a step-by-step plan to mitigate and respond to risks. Our highly trained experts will perform a full security sweep of your network and devices to identify threats and weaknesses.

Let us help you develop a tailored IT roadmap to secure your systems and empower you and your employees to mitigate the risks of a security breach.


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