Mobile Security Misery: A 733% Increase over the Last 5 Years

By on Dec 22, 2013 in Blog

The latest results are in from the 5th annual State of the Endpoint study by the Ponemon Institute – headlined by a whopping 733% increase in concern over mobile usage in the workplace compared to 5 years ago.

As smart devices become increasingly prevalent in regular work life, accordingly the threat landscape has fundamentally changed over the last 5 years. While the threat of mobile-based attacks increase year after year, it seems surprising that businesses are still so slow in modifying their security strategies.

Here is a summary of the findings from this latest study:

  • 71% of respondents say that endpoint security issues have become more difficult to stop or mitigate in the last two years. Indicating a growing sophistication in attacks.
  • 75% of those polled view mobile devices as the greatest IT security risk for 2014 – up from just 9% in 2010. This trend has been expected for a long time now, and now the numbers bear it out.
  • 40% report they were the victim of a targeted attack in the last year, while 25% claim they are not sure if they had been. This indicates that many organizations do not have adequate security mechanisms in place to detect these attacks.
  • Of those who had experienced an attack, the most common method used was a spear phishing email.
  • Malware attacks continue to be an escalating problem, with 41% of respondents experiencing more than 50 malware attacks a month – up 15% from three years ago.
  • Most revealing of all – 46% of respondents said they do not manage employee owned mobile devices.


While the costs of dealing with these threats continue to increase, there has been little corresponding increase in IT budgets. Only 29% of those surveyed reported a budget increase in the last 24 months.

Ultimately these issues can only be solved through user education, and reviewing your organizational security policies so they reflect the reality of today’s threat landscape. It is clearly apparent that organizations can simply not afford to take a “business as usual” approach to these matters.

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