Research shows more than half of US businesses experienced a cyber attack in the past year

Most recent cyber incidents average more than $500,000 in costs
Take the test
New research from business defense expert, BAE Systems, indicates that more than half of those surveyed  in the US have been attacked within the past year and that cyber incidents cost organizations over $500,000 on average.
In response, BAE Systems has launched an online “Take the Test” tool that enables organizations to test the status of their cyber precautions against 10 key questions on elements of their businesses’ information and communications technology (ICT) security.
The recent study, conducted by Vanson Bourne, surveyed 600 IT leaders at companies around the world with 1,000 employees or more, including 200 in the US and 100 each in the UK, Australia, Singapore and Malaysia. The results for the US indicated:
  • 58 percent of US businesses have been attacked within the past year; 20 percent have never been attacked;
  • While the average cost of a cyber attack in the US was about $500,000, 29 percent of businesses reported costs higher, in some cases exceeding $1.2 million;
  • 86 percent of US respondents said they felt confident their businesses have adequate cyber security controls in place;
  • On average the US businesses tested their cyber incident response plan four months ago;
  • 36 percent of US respondents were “completely confident” that their businesses could return to business as usual within 48 hours of suffering a cyber attack.
Colin McKinty, vice president of cyber security strategy, BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, Americas, said:
“The research confirms that cyber security is no longer merely a technical issue, but a business challenge for the Board and executive management.
“It is concerning that nearly one-fifth of business leaders surveyed said they weren’t confident that they could return to business as usual within 48 hours of a serious cyber attack. This reiterates the need for businesses to ensure they have the right people, process and tools in place, so when a major incident occurs they are equipped to understand, contain and remediate. If action isn’t taken immediately, the price of cyber ignorance – for the company and the wider economy – could be severe,” McKinty added.
Notes for Editors
About the Cyber Risk tool
BAE Systems Cyber Risk tool is a simple online evaluation that businesses can use to assess their cyber security strengths and weaknesses and understand where there might be vulnerabilities to attack. The tool is based on CESG’s 10 steps to cyber security guidance.
BAE Systems’ online cyber risk tool “Take The Test” can be found here:
About the research
Conducted by independent technology market research provider Vanson Bourne on behalf of BAE Systems, the survey polled 600 business leaders from private sector organizations’ with more than 1,000 employees – 200 in the US and 100 each in the UK, Australia, Malaysia and Singapore. Respondents were C-suite level (CIO, CISO etc.) or decision makers (management, department heads, etc.) within their IT departments.
About BAE Systems
At BAE Systems, we provide some of the world’s most advanced, technology-led defence, aerospace and security solutions and employ a skilled workforce of some 83,400 people in over 40 countries. Working with customers and local partners, we develop, engineer, manufacture and support products and systems to deliver military capability, protect national security and people and keep critical information and infrastructure secure.
At BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, we help nations, governments and businesses around the world defend themselves against cybercrime, reduce their risk in the connected world, comply with regulation, and transform their operations.
We do this using our unique set of solutions, systems, experience and processes - often collecting and analyzing huge volumes of data. These, combined with our Cyber Special forces - some of the most skilled people in the world, enable us to defend against cyber-attacks, fraud and financial crime, enable intelligence-led policing and solve complex data problems.
We employ over 4,200 people across 18 countries in the Americas, APAC, UK and EMEA. For further information about BAE Systems Applied Intelligence, please visit