Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 32

MAINFRAME SECURITY SURVEY ad actors are everywhere, lurking in the shadows of an otherwise relatively benign computing world. They could be governments, business competitors, organized cybergangs, hacktivists, teenagers with laptops or disgruntled employees. And their disguises are many, ranging from mal- and ransomware, network sniffers, and phishing schemes to social engineering and seemingly innocuous documents sitting in file systems. They attack firewalls, clouds, mobile devices, passwords and even everyday complacency. This is why 54.1 percent of respondents to a recent mainframe-security survey conducted by IBM Systems Magazine said they're very concerned about security. Another 36.3 percent indicated they're somewhat concerned, and 9.6 percent aren't concerned at all. That last number aside, it's clear that organizations of all types realize security risks are real and perhaps growing-both in numbers and sophistication. B A Great Threat But few are taking any chances. Information Technology Co., based in Falls Church, Virginia, takes security risks so seriously that it set up a mainframe on the web with no firewall to see how many hits it gets, says Stan King, the company's CTO. Although no one has hacked into the machine, it attracts 5,000 to 6,000 attempts a day. "A lot of them are robot-oriented types of security hacks, where someone's just trying every IP address, every port-but they're definitely hitting us," he explains. That should alarm the 9.6 percent who aren't concerned about security at all. They may have sky-high firewalls, a bevy of thirdparty security solutions in place and strictly adhered-to policies, but they may also be overlooking the biggest security concern of all, according to the survey: 74 percent of respondents are wary of both unauthorized and authorized system-user access or credential abuse. "Unauthorized users tend to have access to very sensitive data, and this can present a great threat to the organization," says Trinadh Desu, senior associate with Teaneck, New Jerseybased Cognizant Technology Services. To help counter this, his organization has implemented security-related policies and audits. The business and technology services company also employs encryption and restricts workplace web and mobile usage. Fred Shay, mainframe storage manager, IBM, agrees with this assessment, noting that because the mainframe is more secure than Wintel servers, internal threats are often most "Unauthorized users tend to have access to very sensitive data, and this can present a great threat to the organization." -Trinadh Desu, senior associate, Cognizant Technology Services 32 // SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016 ibmsystemsmag.com ! 54.1% of survey respondents say they are very concerned about security serious. "The risk is from people already within the circle of trust: people misusing data they're already authorized to access; disgruntled, malicious or careless employees; inappropriate access by vendors who are trusted. This is how security incidents happen on the mainframe," he says. "It's up to other business functions, such as the human resources department and regular audits, to detect problems that occur among the authorized." A Seemingly Endless List That's not the only way. According to the survey, other threat concerns include unauthorized users (52 percent), external hackers (50 percent), unprotected Security Survey Methodology Security is a topic that's paramount to the majority of enterprises today. The mainstream media is rife with examples of businesses that have suffered data breaches of one sort or another. To ensure their companies stay out of the headlines, IT leaders must manage a number of security threats. With this in mind, IBM Systems Magazine, Mainframe edition set out to learn about readers' security concerns. In late May and early June, the magazine team electronically surveyed 17,700 engaged readers. Of those, 454 completed the 24-question survey, which equates to a 2.6 percent completion rate. To learn more about what your peers think about security issues, read the special report. If you have any feedback on this survey or ideas for future topics, let us know. Evelyn Hoover, Executive Editor ehoover@msptechmedia.com http://www.ibmsystemsmag.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business

Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 31
Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 32
Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 33
Special Report: Marketplace Security Survey, Risky Business - 34
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