Phishing is a $3.7 million annual cost for average large company

The average 10,000-employee company spends $3.7 million a year dealing with phishing attacks

The average 10,000-employee company spends $3.7 million a year dealing with phishing attacks, according to a new report from the Ponemon Institute.

The report, which surveyed 377 IT professionals in companies ranging in size from less than 100 to over 75,000 employees, showed that about half of the costs were due to productivity losses.

The average employee wastes 4.16 hours a year on phishing scams.

In addition, 27 percent of the costs was the risk of having to respond to a data breach caused by a compromised credential, 10 percent was the direct costs of addressing compromised credentials, 9 percent was the risk of a data breach caused by malware, and the remaining 6 percent were the direct costs of containing malware.

"Everyone understands the cost of a breach, and one of the biggest threat vectors is phishing," said Joe Ferrara, CEO at Wombat Security Technologies, which sponsored the report.

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