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A new report published by Thales Security shows a rather worrying trend. Despite spending money on data security solutions, many businesses are experiencing more security breaches than ever before. The threat from cyber-crime is growing by the day, with 26% of businesses surveyed by Thales reporting they had been affected by a data breach in the previous 12 months, compared to 21.7% the previous year. Some 88% of respondents said they felt “vulnerable”, which suggests data security is a big issue for businesses.

Data Security Spending is on the Increase

Data security spending is on the increase, but this is having little effect on network and endpoint security. Experts believe that many businesses are spending a huge amount on solutions that worked in the past, but have failed to take into account the latest threat landscape. Unfortunately, cyber criminals and hackers are continually innovating, so data security cannot afford to stand still.

Astonishingly, without compliance and data security laws dictating how companies must protect client data, many companies wouldn’t spend money on securing confidential data at all. As it is, 44% of companies cite compliance as the reason why they spend money on data security solutions. The rest are more concerned about brand reputation, as well they should be given how disastrous a high profile data breach can be.

A Continually Evolving Threat Landscape

Data security technology is continually changing, but at least modern businesses are trying to keep up with developments and innovations. However, 50% of respondents said complexity of data security solutions prevented them from implementing more aggressive data security solutions, so it is clear that there is a long way to go before the other 50% of businesses adopt the data security measures they need to protect confidential data.

The Complexities of Data Security

The problem is that data security is complex and unless you have a background in information security, it is very difficult to make sense of the latest technologies. Most businesses understand the need for robust online security solutions such as encryption, tokenism, and migrating data to the cloud, but many don’t know where to begin. If they lose a hard drive and need to restore confidential data in a data retrieval clean room, they would call in a specialist provider, but data security is a more nebulous field and for a business operating in a non-tech sector, it is hard to know where to look for new solutions.

Data Protection in 2017

In part, this is why many companies stick with tried and tested data security solutions. They take the view that it worked last year, so why wouldn’t it work this year? Unfortunately, unless businesses take a proactive approach and stay on top of their game, embarrassing and expensive data breaches are going to become more widespread.

The important thing to take away from this research is that being compliant doesn’t mean you are safe. Compliance should be the minimum level of security you need. It’s also important that companies look to protect data outside of their organization, with experts warning that data at rest needs to be the biggest priority in 2017.

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