Businesses Pay A High Price For Automated Bots

The bot detection and mitigation specialist firm Netacea  has announced results from a new survey that reveals the high price that businesses pay because of bot traffic operated by malicious actors.
 
The report surveyed 440 businesses across the travel, entertainment, eCommerce, financial services and telecoms sectors in the United States and the UK and the results show that automated bots currently cost businesses an average of 3.6% of their annual revenue.  For the 25% worst affected businesses, this equates to at least a quarter of a billion dollars ($250 million) every year and that, on average, 14 weeks pass between a successful attack taking place and its detection.  
 
Netacea found that every sector had a substantial bot problem, with two-thirds of businesses detecting website attacks.
 
  • 46% of respondents reported mobile apps had been attacked.
  • 23%, mostly in the financial services, said bots had attacked their Application Programming Interface (API -  a type of software connecting to other pieces of software).
  • Businesses have been affected by all types of bots, including scalper bots which use stolen usernames and passwords to take over accounts, sniper bots that monitor activity and swoop in at the last moment, and scraper bots that extract content and data from websites.

The Netacea research also discovered:

  • Over 80% of businesses reported that customer satisfaction had been negatively affected by bot activity, in particular scalper and sniper bots.
  • Only around 5% of security budgets are dedicated to bot mitigation, although larger firms spend more. with up to 20%.being spent on dealing with bots.
  • Account checker bots are the most popular form of bot attacks, taking advantage of data breaches and leaked passwords to compromise customer accounts.
​“Last year...  was a bumper year for those who use bots to leech off of those businesses, especially from bad actors who looked to take advantage of a significant shift to online working and retail,” said Andy Still, CTO of Netacea“While there is a greater awareness of the threat than in previous years.... Businesses need to realise that bots are not a mere nuisance, but a genuine security threat, especially when a business is already struggling because of other factors.”
 
Netacea’s previous research on Dark Web markets for stolen credentials, shows how sophisticated the cyber crime industry is becoming. Those operating bots do so at a professional level, with consultants, help desks and highly specialised infrastructure providers accessible through covert forums, making bots widely available.
 
Netacea:   
 
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