Malwarebytes Survey! Is more income tempting the security experts to change side?

cybersecurity industry trends

Researchers from Malwarebytes recently did a study on cybersecurity professionals across five countries – United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Australia, and Singapore.

The results were quite astonishing! According to reports published, one in 22 security professionals are suspected to be gray hats globally, and in U.K it is one in 13.

In the case, the total cybersecurity-related cost spent by an organization, an organization of 2500 employees in the U.S is expected to spend nearly $1.9 million per year, and the global average is $1.1 million per year.

The average salary for an entry-level IT security staff is $60,662 globally, and highest is in Australia which comes around $95,000 per year. And the average salary for a senior IT security staff is $130,520 per year globally.

Various threats impacted by Organizations

Majority of organizations have suffered some type of security breaches during the 12 month survey period, and the most common form of attack was phishing which accounts for 44% of total attacks reported.

Apart from phishing, the various other attacks reported are :

  1. adware/spyware (41%)
  2. ransomware (26%)
  3. spear phishing (20%)
  4. accidental insider data breach (17%)
  5. intentional data breaches (9%)
  6. nation-state attacks (2%)
  7. hacktivist attacks (2%)
  8. No reports of attack (27%)

In the case of ‘major’ attacks such as the ones which could disrupt an organization’s routine day to day operations, the researchers found that in 2017, an average of 0.8 attacks occurred in the organizations, which they surveyed. This is an average of one attack in every 15 months. In the U.S it is one attack in every 6.7 months.

The increasing threat of black hat activity

Globally, 41 percent of survey respondents admitted that they either know or have someone who is in black hat activity and 12% have actually thought about participating in black hat activity.

Majority of the people are considering to become a black hat thinking about the opportunity to earn better compared to a security professional. 62.5 % globally consider this as the reason to become a black hat.

According to reports, the most remunerative cybercriminal could earn around of $166,000 per month which when came to mid-range $75,000 per month, and at the low range, a minimum of $3,500 can be earned per month.

Most vulnerable industries

Various industries are vulnerable to different types of threats. In the case of ransomware, the healthcare industry was the most targeted one followed by retail operations, legal firms and manufacturing operations.

APT attacks mostly targeted government agencies. Financial organizations were the primary target of (DDoS) and Trojan attacks.

The survey was conducted by Osterman Research for Malwarebytes during May and June with a total 900 professionals.


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