Finance Industry Is More Susceptible to IS Infrastructure Security Breaches Than Other Industries, IDC Reports

FRAMINGHAM, MA – MAY 21, 2001 – The finance sector has consistently been an early adopter of security technologies – and for good reason. According to IDC, the majority of finance sector companies have experienced a security breach of their IS infrastructure at one time or another.


"Companies within the finance industry are more likely than other types of companies to experience security breaches relating to their IS infrastructures," said Lucie Draper, senior research analyst for IDC’s Corporate Computing Vertical Views program. "For these companies, security is not a value-added feature. It’s a core requirement for conducting business."

The most frequent type of infraction to a finance sector company’s IS infrastructure is a virus on the client or server. Viruses are running rampant at banks, in particular, with 96% reporting such attacks. Fortunately, antiviral tools are the most widespread security technology implemented at finance companies, with near-universal use on the server, messaging, and client platforms. Banks were able to repel 56% of virus attacks at inception and another 36% midstream.

Unauthorized use of IS systems, applications, and email is also another security concern the finance industry is grappling with. In a recent IDC survey, one in four finance sector companies reported such unauthorized use, compared with one in six companies across all industries.

The finance industry is turning to a variety of suppliers to help with its IT security needs. Approximately 38% of finance companies in IDC’s Enterprise Technology Trends survey said they use a hardware or software company’s integration services. Another 43% said they rely on a security specialist.

IDC believes opportunity for IT vendors to help the finance sector with its security needs will continue to be strong over the next few years. "Increased Internet use and strategic ecommerce initiatives will continue to drive finance companies’ need for security technologies," Draper said.

IDC’s new report North American Security Technology Adoption Trends: Finance Sector (IDC #B24415) analyzes the adoption of antivirus tools, firewalls, security management applications, intrusion detection, encryption, hardware- and software-based tokens, and client and server certificates within the finance sector. The report also discusses security solution outsourcing and spending patterns and factors that cause finance companies to rethink their security strategies.

To purchase the report, contact Cheryl Toffel at 1-800-343-4952, extension 4389, or at

About IDC

IDC is the foremost global market intelligence and advisory firm helping clients gain insight into technology and ebusiness trends to develop sound business strategies. Using a combination of rigorous primary research, in-depth analysis, and client interaction, IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends to deliver dependable service and client advice. More than 700 analysts in 43 countries provide global research with local content. IDC's customers comprise the world’s leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.


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