IT disaster recovery, cloud computing and information security news

Duo Security has released the ‘2017 Duo Trusted Access Report’, which provides an analysis of the security health of 4.6 million endpoint devices across multiple industries and geographic regions.

With increased adoption of cloud services and mobile devices, enterprises no longer have distinct boundaries defined by inside and outside the firewall, making the health of devices connecting to their network more critical than ever to protect against new security threats.

To measure the state of device security health, the report looks at the top indicators including out-of-date operating systems, browsers and plugins that make endpoints more susceptible to vulnerabilities, as well as security features mobile devices have enabled.

Also, for the first time, the report highlights the latest data from Duo's simulated phishing assessments. Phishing is one of the easiest and most effective ways for attackers to steal user credentials, exploit out-of-date software, and gain access to enterprise applications.

Key sections and highlights of the report include:

Overall device security health

  • Improvement for Microsoft operating systems (OS): 31 percent of endpoints are running the latest OS version, Windows 10, compared to 15 percent in 2016. Enterprises are slowly migrating to the most up-to-date and secure version two years after its release.
  • However, 13 percent of endpoints are browsing dangerously on an unsupported version of the Internet Explorer browser that is no longer receiving security updates that patch known vulnerabilities.
  • Compared to North America, EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) countries are slightly more up to date. In EMEA, 40 percent of endpoints are running the latest version, Windows 10, compared to 31 percent in North America. In the United Kingdom, 37 percent of endpoints are running Windows 10, compared to 31 percent overall.

Mobile security health

  • Only 27 percent of Android phones are running the latest major OS version, compared to 73 percent of iPhones operating on iOS 10 or above. This stark difference is likely linked to many Android devices being beholden to both manufacturers and carriers to roll out updates, which can slow down the time to patch.

Industry-specific security health

  • The technology industry has the highest number of endpoints running the Windows 10 operating system (OS) at 87 percent, while the healthcare and machinery industries fall in the bottom with only 16 percent and 6 percent of endpoints respectively using the latest OS.
  • Healthcare industry data reveals 76 percent of endpoints are running Windows 7 - an 8-year-old operating system - which is much higher than the 59 percent average of all other endpoints. Worse still, the percentage of healthcare endpoints running Windows XP has increased from 2 percent to 3 percent, which is higher than the 1 percent of overall endpoints.
  • The biotech industry comes in last for mobile security features, with the lowest amount of mobile devices with screen lock or encryption enabled, meaning they lack mobile device security.

Phishing on the rise

  • Duo's analysis of 3,575 simulated phishing campaigns conducted in the past 12 months from Duo Insight, with more than 80,000 recipients, found that 62 percent of campaigns captured at least one credential and 68 percent had at least one out-of-date device.
  • 44 percent of recipients opened the email and 25 percent of recipients clicked the link
  • 13 percent of recipients entered their credentials (username and password).
  • 13 percent of recipients were using out-of-date browsers and 17 percent were running out-of-date operating systems.

A quarter of recipients clicking the link in the email means that they could have potentially visited a malicious website, putting their devices at risk. Since the majority of recipients are using out-of-date devices to open phishing emails, this also puts users at higher risk of getting compromised by an attacker using known vulnerabilities.

Mike Hanley, Sr. Director of Security for Duo, explained, "As underlined from many of the latest headline breaches, unpatched, out-of-date software, systems and servers are prime targets for attackers armed with known vulnerabilities and malware. The 2017 Trusted Access Report shows that while we're making progress in some areas like Windows 10 adoption, there is still much room for improvement across the board."

To download the full 2017 Trusted Access Report, visit: (registration required).

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