Combating Advanced Malware: McAfee Survey at Black Hat USA 2013

The final survey results are in from Black Hat USA 2013 and it’s clear: IT professionals are frustrated that so much time is spent combating advanced malware.

Many professionals devote half their workweek addressing malware and the consequences of advanced attacks.

That’s because new attacks are more advanced than ever before, using everything from pernicious rootkits or social media-driven spear phishing to network-based advanced evasion techniques. As this arms race continues, enterprise defenses and solutions need to adapt to these sophisticated methods of attack.

Recently, I wrote that we surveyed McAfee booth visitors at Black Hat USA 2013 on the topic of advanced malware. The final results are now in and here’s what those IT professionals had to say about their top concerns with advanced malware and how they’re dealing with the problem.

Black Hat Survey Results


Although 81% of all respondents said advanced malware was a big or huge concern to their business, only 44% said their company is presently using technology to combat advanced security threats. That’s a massive gap between recognition of the problem and actually doing something about it.


More than half of those surveyed said their biggest challenge was detecting – and detecting accurately – advanced malware. I think that is a reflection of where we are today in the advanced malware arms race – right now, the attackers and the weapons they use are ahead of the defenders.


A surprising number of those surveyed said that they devote more than 20 hours a week detecting and combating advanced malware and a third spend at least a day a week on this problem. And in many conversations, that was a major frustration.

Fighting advanced malware is part of a security analyst’s job, but enterprise solutions need to do a better job detecting and eradicating these determined adversaries. It’s time for an advanced threat defense system that helps organizations win the advanced malware arms race.

Stay tuned for more from McAfee on this subject and be sure to follow us on Twitter @McAfeeBusiness.



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