Startling Statistics Show Phishing Scams Are A Top Threat to Businesses

Written by Chuck Rutenberg

August 31, 2022

Phishing scams are a top threat as a menace that endangers security for large and small-scale businesses alike every single day. It seems like every passing year is “record-breaking” in terms of cyberattacks. They adversely affect well-known and lesser-known organizations worldwide, resulting in the loss of millions of dollars at a global level.

Phishing, and in particular email phishing, is one of the most widely used attack methods employed by cybercriminals, with lone and multiple bad actors using them to access, compromise, and steal sensitive information. Today, phishing scams are considered the top threat to an organization’s security, and their frequency is increasing.

By the Numbers: Phishing Scams are A Top Threat

Let’s begin with a few current statistics that illustrate just how big the phishing problem is getting and how much money organizations are losing because of it.

  1. Phishing is involved in more than 80% of security breaches, and over 90% of phishing attacks show up as email. Other delivery methods include video conferencing, workforce messaging, and cloud-based file-sharing platforms.
  2. Sixty-five percent of cyber attackers use spear phishing as their primary infection vector.
  3. The average loss from a business email phishing attack is $30,000, and the annual loss in 2020 for U.S. businesses was approximately $1.8 billion.
  4. A recent experiment found that 25% of North American workers were fooled by phishing emails.  
  5. A new phishing attack is launched every 39 seconds!

The top three industries targeted by phishing scams are technology, retail, and finance, but any business is vulnerable. 

What Your Organization Can Do About Phishing Scams

These stats clearly show just how serious a threat phishing scams are for every sector in every industry. No company or enterprise is immune to the attacks, regardless of their size. That makes it essential for all companies to take preventive measures that help them avoid the barrage of phishing threats. 

Experts suggest your organization take these steps to maintain maximum security.

  • A cyber-aware workforce is your best defense against all kinds of phishing attacks. Educate employees about predominant cyberattack tactics and the basic preventive practices they must embrace to prevent them. Consider implementing a comprehensive cybersecurity awareness tool to generate awareness amongst your employees.
  • CISCO’s 2021 Cybersecurity threat trends report found that at least one person clicked an email phishing link in over 85% of organizations. Be sure to instruct employees to carefully double or triple-check a sender’s email address and look out for any unusual date formats, language issues, or other signs something isn’t quite right.
  • Train employees to avoid opening emails or clicking on attachments or links that are from suspicious or unknown senders.
  • Implement email authentication protocols to secure your email domain against domain forgery.

Unfortunately, many companies are stretched and don’t have the human resources to rapidly deploy the programs needed to protect them from the threat of phishing scams. If that describes your business, there are options available to you that can keep your organization safe. For instance, outsourcing your phishing security to a third-party provider can ensure employees receive the necessary training and your network remains protected.

Don’t Become a Phishing Attack Statistic

Experts predict that phishing attacks will, for the foreseeable future, wreak worldwide havoc. For this reason, it’s crucial you take all necessary steps and precautions to keep your data safe and secure. Partnering with an IT managed services provider can help protect your organization against phishing scams, mitigate the damage of data breaches, and provide you with actionable intelligence about phishing attacks in your network before they hurt your business.

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