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Sophos’ Industry-First Vendor-Agnostic MDR Service Grows Customer Base by 33% in First Six Months of Launching

Report by SANDRA ANI

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Sophos MDR
  • Sophos Adds Team of MDR Experts in Germany, Expanding Global Footprint of Security Operations Specialists
  • Defenders Have Less Time to Defend; MDR Services Become Critical Cybersecurity Layer as Attacker Dwell Time Decreases, Says Sophos’ Annual Active Adversary Report

Sophos, a global leader in innovating and delivering cybersecurity as a service, has announced that its industry-first vendor-agnostic Managed Detection and Response (MDR) service has grown its customer base by 33% in the first six months since introducing the service’s ability to ingest and analyze telemetry from third-party security vendors. Already, Sophos is processing more than 150 million alerts from nearly 30 other security providers.

Sophos has also added a new team of MDR experts in Germany to service the increasing demand in the German and European markets, as well as to support the existing globally located MDR team that monitors and defends organizations 24/7/365.

The service now protects more than 16,000 organizations worldwide and has been doubling in size year-over-year as the industry’s most widely used MDR offering.

MDR services are fast becoming an essential cybersecurity layer as attackers refine their tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) to overwhelm defenders. This includes decreasing their dwell time, as evidenced in Sophos’ 2023 Active Adversary Report for Business Leaders report, also announced today. Reduced dwell time indicates attackers are working faster to accomplish their end goal, whether it’s stealing data, deploying ransomware, spying, or perpetrating some other nefarious activity against a target. Consequently, defenders have less time to respond, from identifying the presence of attackers to neutralizing them. Analysis of incident response cases shows that median dwell times are dropping significantly – down to 10 days for the first time, and a day less for ransomware cases – and attacks are occurring continuously instead of during off business hours or over the weekend. Just as interesting, there’s no significant difference in dwell time among organizations of different sizes or sectors.

“The adoption of MDR is skyrocketing because organizations need 24×7 teams of experts to simply take over and handle cyberattacks that are executed in less time, change quickly and are more complex in nature. These factors put Sophos in the ideal position to further trailblaze the market,” said Rob Harrison, vice president of product management for security operations solutions at Sophos. “Since introducing our game-changing ability to ingest, collate and correlate other security vendors’ signals, we’ve already processed more than 150 million non-Sophos alerts from nearly 30 common providers. We’re leading the market in terms of volume, variety and time with unique MDR data from both Sophos and the other security providers. With this advantage of ingesting data from third-party sources, we have broader context, enabling us to make better decisions, defend faster and apply deeper knowledge to new and existing MDR customers.”

“The MDR market is gaining momentum as companies scramble to stay one step ahead of rapidly evolving attacks that continue to increase in number, sophistication and complexity while simultaneously trying to manage the cybersecurity talent skills shortage reality. Since its launch in October, Sophos MDR has mirrored that momentum as organizations look to realize secure outcomes and reduce their cybersecurity risk posture from their existing cybersecurity investments. The benefit of Sophos’s technology-agnostic managed service approach is that it meets customers where they are rather than requiring investment in new security tools to achieve an outcome,” said Frank Dickson, group vice president for IDC’s Security and Trust research practice.

Sophos MDR successfully reported malicious activity across all 10 MITRE ATT&CK steps in the first-ever independent MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluation for security service providers. Sophos MDR was evaluated with 15 vendors, excelling in its ability to detect sophisticated threats with speed and precision. Sophos was named the only Leader across the G2 Grid Reports for MDR, Extended Detection and Response (XDR) Platforms, Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR), Endpoint Protection Suites, and Firewall Software in the G2 Spring 2023 Reports. In the Managed Detection and Response (MDR) Services market on Gartner® Peer Insights®, Sophos MDR is the highest rated and most reviewed MDR service with a 4.8 rating across 296 reviews as of April 24, 2023.

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Meet Kingsley Adonu

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In the dynamic world of entrepreneurship, there are visionaries who not only navigate the business landscape but redefine it. Meet Kingsley Adonu, the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the SMobile Group, a conglomerate that stands as a beacon of excellence and diversity in the global business arena.

Kingsley Adonu is a visionary entrepreneur and the Founder of the SMobile Group, a conglomerate synonymous with excellence and diversity. As the Chief Executive Officer, he has steered the group to remarkable heights, overseeing a spectrum of businesses that span across Telecommunications, Oil and Gas, Real Estate, Hospitality, Water Production, Agriculture, Technology, E-commerce, Energy, Sports, Entertainment, Education, Health, Logistics and Financial Services, with branches extending globally to UK, USA, China, South Africa, and Canada.

Under Kingsley’s astute leadership, SMobile Group has emerged as a major partner for MTN, evident in the impactful presence of the SMobile brand in the telecommunications landscape. His strategic insights and forward-thinking approach have positioned the group as a dynamic player in multiple industries.

Beyond the boardroom, Kingsley Adonu is a dedicated philanthropist, committed to making a positive impact in communities. His philanthropic efforts extend beyond business, reflecting a deep-seated belief in the responsibility of successful individuals to contribute meaningfully to society.

Kingsley’s influence is not confined to national borders; he has actively participated in numerous international telecom conferences, further enriching his understanding of global industry trends and fostering valuable connections with industry leaders worldwide.

With an unwavering commitment to excellence, Kingsley Adonu continues to inspire and lead the SMobile Group towards new horizons, blending business acumen with a passion for positive societal change.

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Only 26% of Surveyed Organizations Stopped Data Encryption by Cybercriminals – Sophos

Retail organizations attacked by ransomware increasingly unable to halt an attack in progress, Sophos Survey Finds, writes SANDRA ANI

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Sophos The State of Ransomware in Retail 2023
  • This Is the Lowest Rate of Disruption in 3 Years  

Sophos, a global leader in innovating and delivering cybersecurity as a service, today shared findings from its sector survey report, “The State of Ransomware in Retail 2023,” which found that only 26% of retail organizations this past year were able to disrupt a ransomware attack before their data was encrypted.

Sophos, a global leader in innovating and delivering cybersecurity as a service, today shared findings from its sector survey report, “The State of Ransomware in Retail 2023,” which found that only 26% of retail organizations this past year were able to disrupt a ransomware attack before their data was encrypted.

This is a three-year low for the sector—a decline from 34% in 2021 and 28% in 2022—suggesting the sector is increasingly unable to halt ransomware attacks already in progress.

“Retailers are losing ground in the battle against ransomware. Ransomware criminals have been encrypting increasingly greater percentages of their retail victims in the last three years, as evidenced by the steadily declining rate of retailers stopping cybercriminal attacks in progress. Retailers must up their defensive game by setting up security that detects and responds to intrusions earlier in the attack chain,” said Chester Wisniewski, director, global field CTO, Sophos.

In addition, the report found that, for those retail organizations that paid the ransom, their median recovery costs (not including the ransom payment) were four times the recovery costs of those that used backups to recover their data ($3,000,000 versus $750,000).

“Forty-three percent of retail victims paid the ransom according to our survey respondents, yet the median recovery cost to victims who paid the ransom was four times the cost to those who used backups and other recovery methods. There are no shortcuts in these situations and rebuilding systems is almost always required. It’s better to deprive the criminals of their spoils and build back better,” said Wisniewski.

Additional key findings from the report include:

  • In line with a broader, cross-sector trend, the retail sector experienced its highest rate of encryption over the past three years, with 71% of those organizations targeted by ransomware stating that attackers successfully encrypted their data
  • The percentage of retail organizations attacked by ransomware declined from 77% last year to 69% this year
  • The percentage of retail organizations that recovered in less than a day decreased from 15% to 9% this year, while the percentage of retail organizations that took more than a month to recover increased from 17% to 21%

Sophos recommends the following best practices to help defend against ransomware and other cyberattacks:

  • Strengthen defensive shields with:
    • Security tools that defend against the most common attack vectors, including endpoint protection with strong anti-ransomware and anti-exploit capabilities
    • Adaptive technologies that respond automatically to attacks, disrupting adversaries and buying defenders time to respond
  • Optimize attack preparation, including regularly backing up, practicing recovering data from backups and maintaining an up-to-date incident response plan
  • Maintain security hygiene, including timely patching and regularly reviewing security tool configurations

To learn more about the State of Ransomware in Retail 2023, download the full report from Sophos.com.

The State of Ransomware 2023 survey polled 3,000 IT/cybersecurity leaders in organizations with between 100 and 5,000 employees, including 355 from the retail sector, across 14 countries in the Americas, EMEA and Asia Pacific.

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IASP Luxembourg: Chinwe Okoli Speaks on Soludo’s Innovation Agenda

By SANDRA ANI

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SID In IASP Luxembourg
Chinwe Okoli speaking at IASP in Luxembourg

“We want Anambra to be known as a destination for innovation, the next Startup State, home for digital Talents, the home of the smart digital tribe”

Ms Chinwe Okoli, the Special Adviser to the Governor of Anambra State on Innovation and Business Incubation addressed the global innovation ecosystem leaders at the 40th IASP World Conference on Science Parks and Areas of Innovation took place at the European Convention Centre, Luxembourg.

SID In IASP Luxembourg
Chinwe Okoli and other world ecosystem leaders at IASP in Luxembourg

The conference with the theme, “𝐌𝐞𝐠𝐚𝐭𝐫𝐞𝐧𝐝𝐬 𝐢𝐧 𝐈𝐧𝐧𝐨𝐯𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐄𝐜𝐨𝐬𝐲𝐬𝐭𝐞𝐦𝐬: 𝐖𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐢𝐦𝐩𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐬 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐒𝐓𝐏𝐬 & 𝐀𝐎𝐈𝐬?” was an exceptional gathering of global innovation stakeholders from over 55 countries. The three-day conference presented an opportunity for the best innovation districts, science parks and areas of innovation in the world to connect and exchange best practices.

Solution Innovation District, Anambra State was prominent in the conference as Ms Okoli addressed the conference on the topic: “𝐇𝐚𝐫𝐧𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐔𝐧𝐭𝐚𝐩𝐩𝐞𝐝 𝐏𝐨𝐭𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐚𝐥 𝐨𝐟 𝐀𝐧𝐚𝐦𝐛𝐫𝐚 𝐃𝐢𝐠𝐢𝐭𝐚𝐥 𝐓𝐫𝐢𝐛𝐞: 𝐀 𝐂𝐚𝐬𝐞 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐃𝐞𝐯𝐞𝐥𝐨𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐂𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐭𝐫𝐢𝐞𝐬.”

She shared the transformative power of the Anambra State Government’s innovation program and highlighted the aspirations of Professor Charles Chukwuma Soludo, the Governor, and efforts in nurturing a robust innovation ecosystem in the State to unlock new opportunities and drive technological progress towards making Anambra the digital and creative capital of Nigeria.

Solution Innovation District (SID) is driven by the Anambra State Government, dedicated to fostering the growth of technology, innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystem.

Ms Okoli restated the commitment of the administration of Governor Soludo towards building the one -of -a kind district in Anambra State, stated the key and ambitious goals of grooming one million Anambra Digital Tribe, startups and digital entrepreneurs and in the end, she called for global partnership.

“Our Mantra in Anambra State is Everything Technology and Technology Everywhere

“At SID, we are activating and developing a dynamic and inclusive ecosystem of the future, Our focus is that in a very short time, Anambra becomes the go-to place for the supply of skills/talents on deep technology -Artificial Intelligence, cybersecurity, robotics, blockchain, Data science, Software Engineering, IoT, Cloud Computing etc.

“Let’s impact the world from the light of the nation, in the biggest country in Africa, let’s do digital magic with the Anambra Digital Tribe”.

SID In IASP Luxembourg (4)
SID In IASP Luxembourg

IASP, the International Association of Science Parks and Areas of Innovation, is the leading association of innovation ecosystems worldwide.

This organization actively unites and empowers a network of managers overseeing areas of innovation, science parks, research parks, innovation districts, knowledge cities, and various other innovation spaces. It’s the driving force behind the exchange of cutting-edge knowledge and best practices, propelling innovation on a global scale.

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