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Kaspersky says skill gap a key PHL cybersecurity challenge

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KASPERSKY Security Network on Wednesday said a dearth of cyber-security workers, skill gap, and evolving threats are key challenges for the Philippines.

“The primary reason is the increase in threats, the security gap [and] skill gap in cyber-security staff and the complexity of the things we have in the environment,” Kaspersky Presales Manager Eden M. Carreon told a Management Association of the Philippines summit.

Kaspersky on Monday said online attacks targeting Philippine companies more than tripled last year from 2022, highlighting the urgency of boosting cyber defenses against web threats that can reverse the benefits of digitalization.

The global cybersecurity company said the number of web threats on local companies jumped to 1.69 million in 2023 from almost 500,000 a year earlier. Web threats detected and blocked among Southeast Asian companies only increased by 0.03% to 13.34 million.

These were calculated using Kaspersky’s business-to-business products installed in companies of various sizes, it said.

Ms. Carreon said it recorded 163,279 financial phishing scams and 4.62 million brute force attacks against Philippine businesses and blocked 1.5 million threats last year.

Ransomware attacks blocked by Kaspersky in the Philippines in 2023 reached 15,312.

Ms. Carreon said Kaspersky found that most companies have been using automated security solutions given the long hiring process and the lack of cybersecurity professionals.

She said 71% of companies in the Asia-Pacific region need as long as nine months to find qualified cybersecurity personnel, while 46% said their teams were understaffed.

Based on Kaspersky’s survey, 59% of information security professionals are leaving their jobs given the huge volume of monotonous manual tasks.

Ms. Carreon said launching a low-level attack is cheap and only costs about $34, but the return on investment is more than $300. — Aubrey Rose A. Inosante

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