Only about one out of every three companies report data breaches, . Additionally, nearly two-thirds (57 percent) would not voluntarily give out information about being hacked if they were not already bound to do so because of disclosure laws.
According to a report by Arbor Networks and The Economist Intelligence Unit, 77 percent of 360 respondents said they had been hacked in the past two years.
"Only a third of companies are willing to share information about incidents with other organizations … But these days, the only way to defend is sharing," said Dan Holden, director of Arbor's ASERT.
Attorney General Eric Holder wants to make it a legal requirement for all companies to disclose data breaches when they occur, . As of now, there are no federal laws that force industries to tell customers they have been hacked, although some state laws exist.
"A strong, national standard for quickly alerting consumers whose information may be compromised … would empower the American people to protect themselves if they are at risk of identity theft," Holder said. "It would enable law enforcement to better investigate these crimes – and hold compromised entities accountable when they fail to keep sensitive information safe. "
Sen. Patrick Leahy, D-Vermont, has recently proposed a bill that will force companies to reveal breaches.
How to Catch a Hacker
Many police investigations depend upon keeping breaches hidden so that experts can watch as the hackers try to gather more sensitive data, according to CNN. Law enforcement authorities can use this information to track down the criminals.
However, after the investigation is concluded, according to Dark Reading, intelligence sharing is thought to be the best way to defend other companies from future attacks.
"The only way to defend is sharing." said Holden.
CNN reports that cybercrime has increased in recent years. According to Verizon, there were 621 confirmed breaches in 2012, and those are only the ones that have been reported. According to Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey, cybercrime will soon be as dangerous to the U.S. as terrorism.
According to Dark Reading, 60 percent of organizations that responded to the Arbor Networks poll have an internal incident response team in case of hacking. The majority (80 percent) of large organizations and 70 percent of companies in general have a third party company with IT specialists that handle security breaches. However, only 17 percent of executives believe they are fully prepared, and 40 percent believe they would be more prepared if they had more knowledge of malicious activity on the Internet.