Hackers pose the greatest cyber risks for states and localities, followed by careless workers and foreign governments, according to an annual IT report.
External threats overshadow internal ones as the public sector’s greatest cybersecurity concern, according to the Public Sector Cybersecurity Survey Report by SolarWinds.
The report by SolarWinds, a company that develops software for businesses to help manage their networks and technology, highlights how state and local government professionals perceive IT challenges and the sources of IT security threats.
Here are some of the key findings in the report state and local government officials should know:
Hackers are (56%) the largest source of security threats for public sector organizations, followed by careless/untrained employees (52%) and foreign governments (47%), the report says. For the first time in five years, careless insiders were not listed as the top security threat.
The report also shows that state and local governments are more likely than other public sector groups to be concerned about the threat of hackers, and that concern about ransomware (66%), malware (65%) and phishing (63%) increased the most over the last year.
Meanwhile, 50% of state government respondents and 25% of local governments indicated that budget constraints are an obstacle to maintaining or improving IT security.
According to the report, government respondents suggest improving investigative and remediation capabilities and reducing barriers to sharing threat information between public and private sectors as the top priorities for compliance with the White House Cybersecurity Executive Order. The executive order directs the removal of any contractual barriers and requires IT service providers to share breach information that could impact government networks, according to PwC.
SolarWinds contracted Market Connections to design and conduct its online survey of 200 federal, 100 state and local and 100 education decision-makers and influencers in October 2021. The report includes findings specific to state and local governments, including what’s seen as the greatest IT security threats and the top challenges agencies face in overcoming them.
For more information from the SolarWinds report click here.
Andre Claudio is an assistant editor at Route Fifty.