Cybersecurity still remains the greatest concern for many executives

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A growing rate of investment in cloud computing and AI by businesses looking to stay ahead of the curve has also led to  a sharp rise in concern among company executives, new research has claimed.

As IT has become less centralized with a move towards cloud-based systems, combined with a shortage of skilled cybersecurity workers, businesses are having to rely more heavily on third party security, a study by Rackspace and Microsoft found.

Nearly two-thirds (63%) of executives now say that cybersecurity is their top concern, rising from 58% in 2022 amid the recent explosion of AI capabilities.

Growing investment in cyber budgets

As businesses have moved towards cloud based systems for areas such as data storage, so too have cyberattacks, with cloud architecture suffering a 12% increase of attacks from 2022, with nearly half of respondents relying on an external service to provide cloud security.

This move towards external providers has also meant that AI literacy among employees has remained alarmingly low, with just 39% of respondent organisations giving a “great” level of awareness and understanding among its employees. However, it's not all bad news.

Visibility of cybersecurity issues has grown among C-suites due to greater collaboration with IT security teams, boosting the skills and knowledge of executives and boards around these issues. 

C-suite concern has also driven IT budgets to new heights, with a third of businesses raising their dedicated cybersecurity budget by 14% and almost half saying that cybersecurity comprises 14% of their total IT budget. This growing investment and greater communication between executives and security departments will hopefully lead to a boost in investment in IT upskilling and boost employee literacy around cybersecurity issues.

“As cybersecurity has become increasingly complex, with workloads and data deployed across multiple platforms, it has become much more difficult to maintain a ‘go it alone’ mentality,” said D K Sinha, President, Public Cloud for Rackspace Technology.

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Benedict Collins
Staff Writer (Security)

Benedict has been writing about security issues for close to 5 years, at first covering geopolitics and international relations while at the University of Buckingham. During this time he studied BA Politics with Journalism, for which he received a second-class honours (upper division). Benedict then continued his studies at a postgraduate level and achieved a distinction in MA Security, Intelligence and Diplomacy. Benedict transitioned his security interests towards cybersecurity upon joining TechRadar Pro as a Staff Writer, focussing on state-sponsored threat actors, malware, social engineering, and national security. Benedict is also an expert on B2B security products, including firewalls, antivirus, endpoint security, and password management.