2023 State of Vulnerability Management Report [Syxsense]

Managing cybersecurity vulnerabilities is a significant challenge for most organizations. Unaddressed vulnerabilities open doors to cyber threats, while the sheer volume of potential risks can make it difficult to prioritize remediation tasks effectively. Rapid technology advancements and ever increasing attack surfaces often outpace organizations’ abilities to stay ahead of emerging threats.

This survey was designed to shed light on current practices, obstacles, and perspectives in vulnerability management. Through understanding how organizations are tackling these challenges, the “2023 State of Vulnerability Management” report offers strategic insights and industry benchmarks.


• Real-World Impact: Nearly a quarter of the organizations surveyed (24%) reported experiencing a breach due to unaddressed vulnerabilities, revealing the real-world implications of neglected vulnerabilities.

• Preventive Measures: Though the majority of organizations (85%) use network vulnerability scans, the application of other preventive measures varies. Only 65% prioritize vulnerabilities based on risk.

• Visibility and Detection: Half of organizations (51%) have, at best, only a moderate level of visibility into vulnerabilities and 26% detect more than 100 new vulnerabilities every month. This underlines the sheer volume of potential risks organizations contend with, necessitating efficient vulnerability management strategies.

• Vulnerability Scanning and Patching Speed: While continuous vulnerability scanning is employed by 35% of respondents, there remains a considerable lag in patch deployment. Surprisingly, only 11% manage to deploy patches on the same day they become available, with a significant 47% taking more than a week. This gap creates a significant risk window, during which organizations remain susceptible to exploited vulnerabilities.

• Scope of Vulnerability Scanning: The survey results show a contrast between what organizations currently scan and where they perceive the need for more comprehensive vulnerability management. Servers (91%) and desktops/laptops/endpoints (80%) are the most scanned assets. However, respondents expressed a need for improved vulnerability management in areas like IoT/OT devices (49%) and cloud assets (44%).

• Maturity of Approach: It’s worth noting that only 19% of organizations have achieved a high-level maturity in their vulnerability management program, suggesting substantial room for industry-wide improvement.

• Barriers to Improvement: The majority of organizations identified budget constraints (56%) and skill shortages (46%) as the most substantial barriers to improved vulnerability management, revealing the increasing demand for innovative solutions and automation to help existing staff do more with less.

• Solution Priorities: When evaluating vulnerability management solutions, the survey participants placed the highest importance on the accuracy of vulnerability detection (79%), followed closely by reporting and analytics capabilities (63%) and the cost of ownership (61%).

We’d like to extend our gratitude to Syxsense for the support in conducting this important research. Syxsense is a leading
provider of unified security and endpoint management solutions, bridging the gap between patch and vulnerability scanning and automated remediation, and their expertise has been invaluable in our analysis.

The insights derived from this survey will serve as a guidepost for organizations striving to bolster their cybersecurity posture through more robust vulnerability management. We hope you find this new report not only informative, but also an effective tool in your mission to protecting your organization’s IT environment.

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