In the past year, global ransomware debilitated entire sectors of some countries’ economies. Equifax was breached, exposing more than 140 million records. Yahoo owned up to losing control of 3 million users’ data. So, it’s no surprise that the cost of cybercrime has steadily risen each year for the past two years, to an average cost of $11.7 million per business.
According to the research firm Gartner, untrained users click 90 percent of links within emails from addresses outside the enterprise, resulting in 10,000 malware infections. By their calculations, the infections led to an overall productivity loss of 15,000 hours per year, which, at a cost of 15,000 times $85 (average wage), equals $1,275,000 in losses. Verizon's annual Data Breach Investigation Report backs up Gartner's findings, pinning 90 percent of successful network breaches on users taking the bait in phishing attacks.
But cybercrime and its associated costs can be reduced when end users are trained to be their employers’ first line of defense. Security awareness training results in reduced risk, businesses that are better protected against breaches, and more profitable MSPs.