APAC Cyber Risk Declines, but 82% of Organizations Predict Successful Attacks this Year

Trend Micro Incorporated revealed that cyber risk levels in Asia Pacific (APAC) have improved from the first half to the second half of 2022, according to its latest survey on cyber risk. Nevertheless, organizations remain pessimistic about the threat landscape, with 82% anticipating successful attacks this year. 

The findings come from Trend Micro’s biannual Cyber Risk Index (CRI) report, which measures the gap between respondents’ cybersecurity preparedness versus their likelihood of being attacked. In the second half of 2022, the CRI surveyed more than 3,700 CISOs, IT practitioners, and managers across North America, Europe, Latin/South America, and APAC.

In APAC, enhanced cyber preparedness is a key driver of improved cyber risk levels—which has shifted from “elevated” to “moderate”. However, organizations cannot rest on their laurels with the prospect of threats looming. 

The threats that APAC organizations are most worried about this year are as follows: 

  • Three in four organizations cited that it was “somewhat to very likely” that they would suffer a breach of customer data (74%), intellectual property (74%) or a successful cyberattack (82%). 
  • These figures represent declines of just 2%, 4%, and 7% respectively, from the results of the CRI in the first half of 2022. 

Nilesh Jain, Vice President, Southeast Asia & India, Trend Micro: “We’ve seen a drastic improvement in the APAC cyber risk index since the first half of 2022, with figures moving into positive territory at 0.05 from negative levels. This is a promising result as it means that organizations have greatly stepped up to improve their cyber preparedness. It is crucial for organizations to continue this momentum by focusing on the threats that matter most to their business this year. The first step is to gain complete and continuous attack surface visibility and control.”

“To address new complexities arising from an expanding attack surface, security teams need to bolster their capabilities in proactive attack surface risk management. On top of architecture improvements for enhanced interoperability, scalability, and agility, having a unified cybersecurity platform with extended detection and response (XDR) capabilities is also critical in enhancing security teams’ visibility and response to cyberthreats across internal and external systems, accounts, and devices. This would give organizations a leg-up in understanding, communicating, and mitigating expected risks.” 

The Philippines’ cyber risk declines

Although the Philippines continues to experience “elevated” risk levels, there has been some improvement since the first half of 2022, with cyber risk declining and preparedness improving.

Table 1: Cyber Risk in APAC & Philippines

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However, local organizations remain strongly on guard with over 80% of organizations citing that they are “somewhat to very likely” to experience a breach in customer data (82%), intellectual property (82%), or successful cyberattack (87%) in the next 12 months. 

Expected cyber threats in the Philippines & APAC this year

Organizations in the Philippines and APAC cited ransomware, business email compromise, and botnets among the top five cyber threats that they expect to experience this year. 

Table 2: Top 5 Expected Cyber Threats

1. Business Email Compromise (BEC)
2. Ransomware
3. Clickjacking
4. Botnets
5. Crypto-mining
1. Ransomware
2. Business Email Compromise (BEC)
3. Botnets
4. Watering Hole Attacks
5. Denial of Service (DoS)

Current infrastructure security risks of organizations in the Philippines & APAC

In APAC and the Philippines, primary infrastructure risks cited are people related. Respondents in the Philippines and across the region named employees/personnel as representing three of their top five infrastructure risks.

Table 3: Top 5 Current Security Risks in Infrastructure

1. Negligent insiders
2. Cloud computing infrastructure and providers
3. Shortage of qualified personnel
4. Mobile/remote employees
5. Organisational misalignment and complexity
1. Negligent insiders
2. Shortage of qualified personnel
3. Cloud computing infrastructure and providers
4. Organisational misalignment and complexity
5. Mobile or remote employees

Ian Felipe, Country Manager, Trend Micro Philippines: “Hybrid work has become the norm in the Philippines—Trend Micro’s recent Risky Rewards study revealed that 78% of Filipino businesses believe that offering the ability to work from anywhere has become vital in the war for talent. At the same time, 62% believe there is a strong connection between cybersecurity and overall business risk. Local organizations thus need to master a balancing act between offering employees flexibility and minimising both the security and business risks that arise. Armed with the insights provided by the CRI, CISOs and CIOs in the Philippines can now better evaluate not only the technology solutions, but its people and processes to help mitigate cyber risks across the enterprise.” 

To read a full copy of the Trend Micro CRI 2H 2022, please visit: https://www.trendmicro.com/en_us/security-intelligence/breaking-news/cyber-risk-index

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