Cyber security survey reveals significant GDPR readiness gap

Despite progress, 60% of EU and 50% of US cybersecurity professionals worry about compliance by the May deadline.

Johannesburg, 13 Dec 2017
Read time 2min 40sec

Varonis Systems (NASDAQ:VRNS), a leading provider of software solutions that protect data from insider threats and cyber attacks, released findings from an independent survey exploring readiness and attitudes toward the upcoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) implementation deadline. The survey, which polled 500 cyber security professionals in the UK, Germany, France and US, highlights GDPR readiness shortcomings, with more than half (57%) of professionals concerned about compliance with the standard.

With just a few months before the 25 May 2018 deadline, 60% of respondents in the EU and 50% of respondents in the US say they face some serious challenges in being GDPR compliant. Among other notable findings:

* 56% think the right to erasure/"to be forgotten" poses the greatest challenge in meeting the GDPR, followed by implementing data protection by design.
* 38% of respondents report that their organisations do not view compliance with GDPR by the deadline as a priority.
* 74% believe that adhering to the GDPR will give them a competitive advantage over other organisations in their sector.

"It's encouraging to see progress made surrounding the GDPR, and yet it's deeply concerning that more than half of the organisations surveyed continue to face compliance challenges," said Varonis CMO David Gibson. "The GDPR represents a significant change in the way data must be handled. It's alarming that so many respondents simply aren't worried, especially given that many organisations are not tackling the biggest problems and best practices around data collection, management and protection. Ignorance is not bliss when it comes to the GDPR, and organisations that have fallen behind in their preparations must ramp up their compliance activities or they could take a serious financial hit once the regulations take effect."

Other interesting findings include:

* One in four US respondents believe their firms need not comply with GDPR.
* 35% of respondents in Germany, 42% in France and 36% in the UK report being in compliance.
* In the EU, almost half of respondents say their organisation is more than 50% complete in their compliance process.

The independent survey on top concerns, approaches and experiences of cyber security professionals regarding the GDPR was commissioned by Varonis and carried out by Survey Sampling International. Respondents were 500 cyber security professionals from organisations with 1 000+ employees from the United Kingdom, France, Germany and the United States. The survey was conducted by SSI from September 28 - October 6, 2017.

Additional Resources:
* Read the full survey findings:
* Explore Varonis' free GDPR educational video course, "GDPR Attack Plan: What You Need to Know," created in partnership with renowned security expert Troy Hunt.
* For more information on Varonis' solution portfolio, please visit
* Visit its blog, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.
* Join its South Africa & The Rest of Africa LinkedIn group for regular news and updates.


Varonis is a leading provider of software solutions that protect data from insider threats and cyber attacks. Through an innovative software platform, Varonis allows organisations to analyse, secure, manage, and migrate their volumes of unstructured data. Varonis specialises in file and e-mail systems that store valuable spreadsheets, word processing documents, presentations, audio and video files, e-mails, and text. This rapidly growing data often contains an enterprise's financial information, product plans, strategic initiatives, intellectual property, and confidential employee, customer or patient records. IT and business personnel deploy Varonis software for a variety of use cases, including data security, governance and compliance, user behaviour analytics, archiving, search, and file synchronisation and sharing. With offices and partners worldwide, Varonis had approximately 5 950 customers as of 30 September 2017, spanning leading firms in financial services, healthcare, public, industrial, insurance, energy and utilities, media and entertainment, consumer and retail, technology and education sectors.

Editorial contacts
Varonis Carl Groves (+44) 7741 313 545
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