Industry research shows most breaches go undiscovered for weeks, months or even longer. Despite this evidence, 51 percent of respondents said their organization could detect a data breach on critical systems in 24 to 48 hours, 18 percent said it would take three days and 11 percent said within a week.
According to the Mandiant 2014 Threat Report, the average time required to detect breaches is 229 days. The report also states that the number of firms that detected their own breaches dropped from 37 percent in 2012 to 33 percent in 2013.
“I think the survey respondents are either fooling themselves or are naively optimistic,” said Dwayne Melancon, CTO for Tripwire. “A majority of the respondents said they could detect a breach in less than a week, but historical data says it is likely to be months before they notice.”
When asked to name the top challenges in detecting data breaches quickly, 34 percent of respondents identified too much data, specifically too many alerts and false positives, and incomplete visibility across their network and endpoints as key limiting factors.
Melancon continued: “The problem is not just ‘too much data’ as the survey indicates – the bigger issue is that most organizations are ignoring the foundational security controls needed to run a secure infrastructure. Organizations must shift their focus from hoping they will notice breaches ‘in the moment’ to reducing their attack surface through configuration hardening and proactive vulnerability management."
"Once they have taken these steps, they can implement a continuous monitoring approach that detects suspicious changes and activity on their systems. This approach reduces noise and dramatically increases the accuracy of the alerts, enabling them to detect and respond to breaches quickly,” Melancon added.