Telstra report finds 48% of Australian companies experienced cyber attack

The 2019 Telstra Security Report, covering more than 300 Aussie companies, has found that 48% had experienced a cyber attack in the past year, up 33% on 2018 figures.

Over 80% of those who were attacked suffered ransom attacks, and more than half paid it. What's more, 79% who did pay said that, if attacked again, they would consider paying the ransom if there was no back-up for the impacted data.

Alarmingly, 89% of survey respondents estimated that more than half of their company's data breaches went undetected, even though 74% of businesses believe they have strong cyber security systems in place (the report stated that a major source of risk to IT security is human - employee - error).

And paying the ransom does not guarantee a retrieval of data and of those that paid, 77% were able to retrieve the data, compared with 86% the year before.

However, it isn't all doom and gloom.

The report found that "awareness and understanding of the strategic importance of security has increased, with 84% of companies saying they will increase security budgets, currently averaging over $900,000 per annum, in the next 12 to 24 months."

The answer? Companies need to stay vigilant and ensure software is frequently kept updated and patched.