Research shows time to discovery and containment of breaches slowly shrinking, but attackers don’t need a very big window to do a lot of damage.
It’s breach report season and one of the prevailing trends uncovered by security researchers is that organizations are ever-so-slowly improving the window between when a compromise occurs and when it gets detected. In spite of this slight gain, the fact solidly remains that the typical breach timeline still completely favors attackers.
Two different reports this spring showed that organizations are shortening the time to discovery of data breaches. Most recently, the Trustwave 2019 Global Security Report released late last month found that the time between an intrusion and detection of that incident shrank almost in half. That study showed that the median time between intrusion and detection fell from 26 days in 2017 to 14 days in 2018.
This corroborates the downward trend in this statistic identified in March by the FireEye 2019 Mandiant M-Trends Report, though that study showed a more modest reduction and a much higher time between these important breach milestones. Mandiant found that the time between intrusion and detection went down from 101 days in 2017 to 78 days in 2018. That’s marked improvement from 2011, when Mandiant put that number at 426 days.
Mandiant uses a common parlance of “dwell time” for this statistic, though other experts have their own colorful terms. But they all agree that reduction should be a big priority for cybersecurity teams.
Read more: Dark Reading