Archive for NOVIPRO

More Than Half Of Ransomware Victims Paid The Amount Demanded By Hackers In 2021: NOVIPRO

Posted in Commentary with tags on February 7, 2022 by itnerd

Canadian IT company, NOVIPRO, today unveiled its sixth annual IT Portrait of Canadian Businesses in collaboration with Leger, which revealed the deep vulnerability of Canadian companies to computer attacks. The study reveals that more than half (56%) of organizations targeted by malware have paid the amounts requested by cybercriminals. Of these, one of three companies (33%) retained the services of a negotiator, while 23% proceeded without the help of an intermediary.

And why wouldn’t they pay? Data is a valuable commodity. Sixty percent of companies have sensitive customer data (e.g. confidential information, credit card numbers, social insurance numbers, etc.) and nearly one third (28%) value their information assets (data, people, processes, recipes, etc.) at more than $1 million.

Hybrid work breeds concerns about cyberattacks

Our time in the pandemic has revived security concerns. Nearly half (43%) of respondents are more concerned about a breach since the introduction of hybrid work, prompting most organizations (76%) to take the time to review their security practices, whether it’s providing training to employees (32%), developing a telecommuting policy (31%) or investing in software (29%), to name a few.

Reflecting the feedback from 2020, companies that are victims of cyberattacks once again admit that their employees are the largest source of cyber threats (53%). Of these, 31% are motivated by malicious intent and 22% unintentionally trigger an attack by clicking, for example, on a fraudulent link. Despite this, the percentage of organizations that have trained their teams have continued to steadily decrease for the past three years. Only 40% of respondents plan to offer training to their teams on this topic next year.

Additional findings included:

  • Work-from-home means cloud computing is here to stay

While the fifth edition of this study found a marked acceleration in cloud adoption by Canadian businesses due to COVID-19, the 2021 data shows that the trend continues. No doubt a sign that telecommuting or telework is becoming permanent, a third of respondents (33%) cite it as one of the reasons IT professionals encourage or would encourage companies to opt for cloud computing.

  • Attraction and retention are the challenges of the day

Not surprisingly, the difficulty of attracting qualified resources (43%) and the retention of key personnel (39%) are the major challenges for human resources in the IT field. The pandemic has exacerbated these issues as more than a third of organizations have struggled to attract skilled talent (45%), retain key resources (36%) or engage and motivate teams (31%).When the pandemic struck in 2020, more than half of companies wanted their employees to work from home for more than three days per week. One quarter of respondents also intended to allow full-time remote work. Practices have continued to evolve in this area, with 52% of companies having reduced the number of days employees are authorized to work from home in 2021. 

  • AI investment is down

More cautious since the pandemic, companies are forecasting less technology investment in the next two years (80%) compared to 2020 (88%); Ontario companies (85%) are planning to invest the most in the next two years. For the second year in a row, investment plans in advanced data analytics and artificial intelligence are declining, falling to 18%, from 29% in 2020. If Quebec was among the leaders in this sector before the pandemic, it is now the Canadian province with the least focus on AI, while British Columbia (24%) is in first place for the first time in six years.

  • Renewed trust in IT teams

The survey shows that 40% of companies have more confidence in their IT team when it comes to security in the wake of COVID-19.

Provincial Variations

While Canadian businesses from coast-to-coast have concerns about ongoing issues with cyberattacks, there are also some interesting regional highlights and differences on the topic:

  • Quebec (70%) companies were less likely to review security practices due to the pandemic compared to Ontario and British Columbia organizations (82% respectively) in 2021.
  • Over half of Ontario businesses (56%) are more afraid of a cyberattack since the implementation of hybrid work, compared to Quebec (32%) who are less concerned.
  • 25% of respondents say they have already been victims of a computer threat, similar to the previous year. Quebec (24%) was the most affected province in 2020, however Ontario (29%) has overtaken this spot in 2021.
  • Only 12% of Canadian companies view their IT as a necessary evil, with Ontario businesses having the highest proportion at 17%.

The entire study is available for download from NOVIPRO at

Fourth Annual NOVIPRO Survey Reveals Canadian Businesses Are Not Taking Cybersecurity Risks Seriously

Posted in Commentary with tags on January 28, 2020 by itnerd

Results from the fourth annual NOVIPRO/Leger IT Portrait of Canadian Business survey questions whether Canadian businesses are taking the responsibility for their data seriously. In 2019, cyber attacks affected more than one third of companies (37%), up from 28% the year prior. Yet, instead of taking a proactive stance against a possible breach, surprisingly, most companies are opting for a wait-and-see approach, potentially jeopardizing the safety of their data, clients and business altogether.

The survey showed that less than half of all Canadian companies surveyed (48%) took steps to review their data protection plans last year. The financial industry has been the hardest hit with security issues, however just 58 percent of those businesses have undertaken a review. Results also found that only 38 percent of companies surveyed would alert clients to a cyber-attack event, down from nearly half (49%) in the year prior.

Respondents Recognize a Need for Improvement

While three out of four companies (76%) believe they have a solid knowledge of new North American and European data management regulations, less than half of all companies feel they are well protected against data loss (46%), intrusions (44%), and viruses (45%).

An encouraging sign from the survey is that respondents pegged security solutions as their top tech investment priority (42%), up from the second spot last year and ahead of infrastructure (40%) and business (37%) solutions. “We must see the protection of informational assets as a strategic investment contributing to the achievement of the strategic objectives of the company,” says Alina Dulipovici, associate professor in the Department of Information Technologies of HEC Montréal. “More action is also needed to enable employees and even business partners to become strong links in the information asset protection chain by raising awareness of security risks.”

Friendly Fire

When asked about the sources of IT threats, the survey revealed businesses need to focus internally more than externally. Thirty-six percent of respondents pointed to partners, suppliers, and clients as threats; 32 percent cited internal resources (employees); and only 30 percent blame external threats that have no connection to the company.

Greater Importance on IT, AI and the Cloud

Increased investment in security is essential as Canadian companies are placing more importance on IT services than ever before. Today, IT is seen less as an investment (47%/28%, 2016/2019) and more as a strategic partner (21%/41%, 2016/2019) in success*.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been gradually gaining traction to where, today, 92% of businesses feel they have a solid grasp of AI solutions. Companies investing in AI are leveraging it to boost productivity (51%), cut operating costs (38%), replace manual tasks (36%), decipher market trends (32%) and improve the customer experience (31%), which fell from number two in 2018 to last.

With regards to Cloud computing, close to 50 percent of companies feel the technology has enabled them to be more efficient than ever, and one in three (33%) agree the future is in the Cloud, but say they are not yet ready to take the plunge. As in 2019, one in three companies (33%) say that Cloud computing is not a viable solution due to the costs involved. The other reasons given are the lack of support (31%), unproven reliability (29%), lack of security (27%), and inadequate performance (25%). That said, business confidence in Cloud computing has increased significantly. Among companies where Cloud computing is not a solution, only one in four (27%) deem the technology unsecure compared to 43% in 2018.

About the 2019 NOVIPRO/Léger Survey

This fourth portrait was conducted from September 23 to October 23, 2019 among 496 respondents (300 IT decision-makers and 196 from other sectors) from Canadian companies. Most respondents are men (70%) working full time (96%) in a medium-sized business (100 to 499 employees – 43%) or a large company (500 or more employees – 55%).