77% of Businesses Don’t Have a Response Plan for Cyberattacks

cybersecurity - Hacking Bypass Security

A study of over 2,800 incident response professionals conducted by IBM Resilient and the Ponemon Institute has revealed that a staggering 77 percent of respondents do not have a formal cybersecurity incident response plan in their organization.

The ‘Third Annual Study on the Cyber Resilient Organization’ has revealed a number of key, and startling, findings.


  • 77 percent of study respondents do not possess a formal cybersecurity incident response plan (CSIRP) applied consistently across their organization.
  • 77 percent of respondents have difficulty hiring and retaining cybersecurity professionals.
  • 60 percent consider a lack of investment in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning as the biggest barrier to their cyber resilience strategy.
  • Only 31 percent have an adequate cyber resilience budget in place.  Only 29 percent agree their staffing for IT security is sufficient to achieve a high level of cyber resilience.

Further, 48 percent of incident response professionals rate their organization’s cyber resilience as high or very high. In comparison, 65 percent said the severity of cyberattacks increased over the year while 57 percent claimed that the time to resolve an incident increased in the year 2017.

“Organizations may be feeling more Cyber Resilient today, and the biggest reason why was hiring skilled personnel,” said Ted Julian, VP of Product Management and Co-Founder, IBM Resilient.

The executive added:

“Having the right staff in place is critical but arming them with the most modern tools to augment their work is equally as important. A response plan that orchestrates human intelligence with machine intelligence is the only way security teams are going to get ahead of the threat and improve overall Cyber Resilience.”

The startling lack of a consistent CSIRP is despite a key finding from IBM’s own ‘cost of a data breach study’ that determined that organizations can save nearly $1 million on average when containing a breach in less than 30 days – underlining the importance of a strong cyber resilience plan.

“A sharp focus in a few crucial areas can make a big difference when it comes to Cyber Resilience,” said Dr. Larry Ponemon. “Ensuring the security function is equipped with a proper incident response plan, staffing, and budget will lead to a stronger security posture and better overall Cyber Resilience.”

Image credit: LIFARS archive.