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UAE sees increase in impersonation attacks, study reveals

The UAE impersonation attacks have increased by 75 per cent. (Image source: DataCorp Technology LTD/Flickr)

Email and data security company Mimecast has published its third-year ?State of Email Security? report, which reveals a significant increase in targeted attacks such as phishing, data leaks, impersonation and business disrupting ransomware

The report includes insights from 1,025 global IT decision-makers, including the UAE. As cybercriminals continue to use email as a primary vehicle to steal data and deliver advanced threats, the results of this research provide valuable insights and trends on what most affects organisations and how they can improve their overall security posture.

The report found that the UAE impersonation attacks increased by 75 per cent, with 77 per cent of those organisations affected by impersonation attacks having experienced a direct loss, specifically customer loss (23 per cent), financial loss (21 per cent) and data loss (40 per cent).

According to the report, 94 per cent of the organisation experienced phishing and spear phishing attacks in the previous 12 months and 75 per cent reported an increase in phishing attacks over the same period.

Email-based attacks are not only on the rise but also affect the organisation?s confidence in its cybersecurity defences. According to the report, 39 per cent believe their organisation is likely or inevitable to suffer a negative business impact from an e-mail-borne attack.

The report also found that nearly a third (62 per cent) encountered a ransomware attack that directly affected business operations. A total of 58 per cent of UAE respondents reported two to three days of downtime, while 29 per cent reported four to five days of downtime.

In addition, 41 per cent of respondents saw an increase in internal threats or data leaks.

The survey results indicated that more than 90 per cent of the organisations are already using some threat sources, and 74 per cent use email security systems that provide threat intelligence data to their security teams.