CyberArk Unveils Insights on Identity-related Breaches


 Around 97% of UAE organisations surveyed have been a victim of a successful identity-related breach due to a phishing or vishing attack, reveals CyberArk.

CyberArk , the identity security company, has released a new global research report that shows how siloed approaches to securing human and machine identities are driving identity-related breaches across enterprises and their ecosystems.

The CyberArk 2024 Identity Security Threat Landscape Report provides unique perspectives on how Artificial Intelligence (AI) boosts cyber defenses as well as attacker capabilities; increases the pace at which identities are created in new and complex environments; and highlights the scale of identity-related breaches affecting organisations.

The report, which surveyed 2,400 cybersecurity decision-makers in more than 18 countries including the UAE, found that 99% of UAE organisations had two or more identity-related breaches in the past year, indicating the scale of the new challenges.

“The digital initiatives that drive organisations forward inevitably create waves of new human and machine identities. Because many of these identities require sensitive or privileged access it is imperative that businesses in the UAE gain a clearer understanding of the nature of this access and the attack surface it represents,” said Tom Lowndes, Director, Middle East at CyberArk. “Identity-centric breaches affect nearly all organisations, with most suffering multiple successful attacks; to address the extent of growing threats on identity that organisations face from an array of malign actors, it is key to build resilience on a new cybersecurity model that places identity security at its core.”  

Also Read: Evaluating the Risks of Deepfakes in UAE Organisations

While the quantity of both human and machine identities is growing quickly, the report found that security professionals globally rate machines as the riskiest identity type. In part due to widespread adoption of multi-cloud strategies and growing utilisation of AI-related programs like Large Language Models, machine identities are being created in vast numbers. Many of these identities require sensitive or privileged access.

However, contrary to how human access to sensitive data is managed, machine identities often lack identity security controls, and therefore represent a widespread and potent threat vector ready to be exploited. Key findings of the report include:

Around 99% of UAE organisations had two or more identity-related breaches in the past year. Machine identities are the #1 cause of identity growth in the UAE and are considered by respondents to be the riskiest identity type. Approximately, 94% of UAE organisations expect identities to grow 3x or more in the next 12 months. Whereas, 28% of UAE organisations cited concerns over their software supply chain as a key concern for securing machine identities.

Furthermore, the report predicts an increase in the volume and sophistication of identity-related attacks, as skilled and unskilled bad actors also increase their capabilities, including AI-powered malware and phishing. In related findings, the majority of respondents are confident that deepfakes targeting their organisation won’t fool their employees. 

All UAE organisations surveyed have adopted AI-powered tools as part of their cyber defences to some degree, with 35% using AI for advanced analytics and 31% addressing cyber skills and resource challenges with AI.

Whereas, around 99% of UAE respondents expect AI-powered tools to create cyber risks including AI-powered malware, phishing, data leakage from compromised AI models and deepfake scams. While, 83% of them are confident that their employees can identify deepfakes of their organisational leadership. And 97% of UAE organisations surveyed have been a victim of a successful identity-related breach due to a phishing or vishing attack.