7 Key Findings from the 2022 SaaS Security Survey Report

The 2022 SaaS Security Survey Report, in collaboration with CSA, examines the state of SaaS security as seen in the eyes of CISOs and security professionals in today’s enterprises. The report gathers anonymous responses from 340 CSA members to examine not only the growing risks in SaaS security but also how different organizations are currently working to secure themselves.


The majority (71%) of respondents were located in the Americas, another 17% from Asia, and 13% from EMEA. Of these participants 49% influence the decision-making process while 39% run the process itself. The survey examined organizations from a variety of industries, such as telecommunications (25%), finance (22%), and government (9%).

While there are many takeaways from the survey, these are our top seven.

1: SaaS Misconfigurations are Leading to Security Incidents

Since 2019, SaaS misconfigurations have become a top concern for organizations, with at least 43% of organizations reporting they’ve dealt with one or more security incidents caused by a misconfiguration. However, since many other organizations state they are unaware if they had experienced a security incident, the number of SaaS misconfigured-related incidents could be as high as 63%. These numbers are striking when compared to the 17% of security incidents caused by IaaS misconfiguration.

2: Lack of Visibility and too Many Departments with Access Reported as Leading Cause for SaaS Misconfigurations

So what exactly is the cause of these SaaS misconfigurations? While there are several factors to consider, the survey respondents narrow it down to the two leading causes – having too many departments with access to security settings (35%), and a lack of visibility into the changes in the security settings (34%). These are two related issues, neither of which are surprising given that lack of visibility was rated a top concern when adopting applications, and that on average organizations have multiple departments with access to security settings. One of the leading reasons for the lack of visibility is the fact that too many departments have access to security settings, and many of these departments don’t have proper training and focus on security.

3: Investment in Business-Critical SaaS Applications are Outpacing SaaS Security Tools and Staff

It’s well-known that businesses are adopting more apps – this past year alone, 81% of respondents say that they have increased their investments in business-critical SaaS applications. On the other hand, investment in security tools (73%) and staff (55%) for SaaS security is lower. This dissonance represents an increasing burden on the existing security teams to monitor SaaS security.

4: Manual detection and remediation of SaaS misconfigurations keep organizations exposed

46% of organizations that manually monitor their security are conducting checks only once a month or less, while 5% don’t conduct checks at all. After discovering a misconfiguration, it takes additional time for security teams to resolve it. Approximately 1 in 4 organizations take one week or longer to resolve a misconfiguration when remediating manually. This lengthy timing leaves organizations vulnerable.


The flip side of the coin for finding #4 is that the organizations that have implemented an SSPM can more quickly and accurately detect and remediate their SaaS misconfigurations. The majority of these organizations (78%) utilize an SSPM to check their security configurations once a week or more. When it comes to resolving the misconfiguration, 81% of organizations using an SSPM are able to resolve it within a day to a week. Read more: https://bit.ly/3MEDOry

You can also read this: Into the Breach: Breaking Down 3 SaaS App Cyber Attacks in 2022

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