For anyone who has freaked out when an antivirus alert popped up on their screen and spent time researching it only to find out it was a false alarm, a recent survey will hit home.
A survey of information-technology professionals published on Friday found that the average large organization has to sift through nearly 17,000 malware alerts each week to find the 19 percent that are considered reliable. The efforts at triage waste employees’ time—to the tune of a total estimated annual productivity loss of $1.3 million per organization. In the end, security professionals only have time to investigate four percent of the warnings, according to the survey conducted by the market researcher Ponemon Institute.
The survey results show the problems posed by security software that alerts for any potential threat, says Brian Foster, chief technology officer of network-security firm Damballa, the sponsor of the research.