IT carries too much burden for cyber-security, says Palo Alto

When it comes to preventing cyber-breaches, there is still plenty of work to be done in collaboration and sharing responsibility. Both are important actions for European businesses to avoid major fines and reputable damage.

That's according to new research from Palo Alto Networks which surveyed 765 decision-makers in large companies with over 1,000 employees in the UK, Germany, France, Belgium and the Netherlands.

The study found that a huge amount of accountability is only placed on IT, with almost half (46 percent) of managers feeling that the ultimate responsibility for protecting an organisation from cyber-security risk lies in the IT department. Not only do managers believe this, however 57 percent of IT departments themselves agree that they solely hold the keys to a company's security.

The results suggest that a lack of cyber-security understanding at the management level could be the cause of a lack of consensus on where duties lie. One in 10 employees still don't believe the company's leaders have a relevant or accurate understanding of current cyber-security issues to correctly prevent attacks.

“Ultimately, it is critical that managers recognise that, when it comes to cyber-security, the onus is on everyone – it's no longer a dark art but an everyday business practice that must pervade every level of the organisation,” said Greg Day, VP and regional chief security officer, EMEA, Palo Alto Networks.

Currently, 25 percent of organisations measure cyber-security effectiveness by how many incidents were blocked by a cyber-security policy. Over one-fifth (21 percent) refer to how long it took an issue to be sorted out.