One third of large enterprises admit being hacked

A third of large enterprises admit they have been victims of intrusions to their office networks and office servers in the last two years, research has claimed. According to a poll of 360 enterprise IT security professionals published today, more than 40 percent of companies with 20,000 or more employees indicate that they have fallen victim to hackers during the same time period.

The research, which was commissioned by VanDyke Software, reported that the incidents of successful network penetrations were rising, despite the fact that firms were trying harder than ever to fight off hackers.

"Enterprises - small, medium, and large - are responding to vulnerabilities by locking down office machines, networks, and servers through the use of firewalls, scanners, detection systems, or other security measures. Overall, more than 50 percent of the respondents indicate security monitoring of their office servers using scripts running across all machines on an automated, scheduled basis," said Steve Birnkrant, CEO of Amplitude Research, which conducted the poll.

"Despite the high percentage of successful intrusions, the responses also indicate a strong resolve by IT security decision makers to tackle challenges to the security of their enterprise computers, servers and networks."

The poll found that 92.26 percent of firms have installed a network firewall, while 53.56 percent use a network analyzer such as Microsoft Baseline Security Analyze.

Over half of respondents said that they turn off nonsecure protocols like Telnet or FTP and similar percentages have installed intrusion detection system and user-based firewall.

Jeff P. VanDyke, president of VanDyke Software, said: "In the final quarter of 2005, it is somewhat surprising that only slightly more than half of enterprises indicated they have turned off nonsecure protocols like Telnet or FTP. It is an important step to decreasing intrusion vulnerability and yet the number of enterprises that actually do so is far from being an 'overwhelming majority'."

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