Updated: Dec 6, 2020
Well it certainly seems likely, at the last discussion at the World Economic Forum in January 2020 it was felt so. Because:
FACT – Internet users are ever increasing, with even children having access to the digital world from an early age, the challenges of disinformation and cyberattacks are even rifer, and this will only be exacerbated the more cyber-advanced a country becomes.
FACT – It is a vicious cycle – the more data is created, the more it is collected: and there is more data being created and collected than ever before, unfortunately, it is not always collected within the guidelines of the Protection of Personal Information Act, which is why making policy attempts to protect this data needs to be swift, and it needs to be drastic.
FACT – It will fall upon our business leaders to create a strong cybersecurity culture – which needs to become second nature.
It’s 2020 and believe it or not, we are living through the Fourth Industrial Revolution – think artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, voice activated assistants, facial or eye recognition and digital healthcare sensors. (Did you ever watch Back to the Future?!).
The race towards global connectivity and digitalisation goes forth, which means, the race to create new connections and technologies to support this cyber growth from cyberattacks and risks to these innovations will also increase in urgency and frequency. For Morar Incorporated as business leaders in this digital age, we understand that cybersecurity is a key responsibility of the executive management team and of course, its board members who need to be held accountable and live up to the expectations and responsibilities placed on them. In the business environment, a company’s reputation is everything, and this increasingly depends on how well it manages customer, client and partner information, it makes it even more crucial for these customers to know and trust that the boards of directors can make these informed decisions about cybersecurity, after all, it is now vital for long-term business resilience.
So ... What is it that board members can actually do to enhance their company’s cybersecurity maturity?
1. Educate themselves about cyber risks
Board members don’t need to be cybersecurity experts, but they do need to become more knowledgeable about cyber risk. Boards also need to hear from internal and external cyber experts. Every major company would be wise to have an executive responsible for assessing and managing their cyber risk. They should, on a defined regular basis, report to the board and be able to do so rankly, with integrity.
2. Never assume your industry is safe
Traditionally the financial services industry which has been the target of historic cyberattacks has long known that ensuring maximum cybersecurity vigilance is a vital corporate goal. Other industries are also recognising that their reliance on devices and the internet has vastly increased their likelihood of being the target of cyberattacks and as such have changed their risk profile.
3. Include cybersecurity from the start
It is no longer possible for companies to innovate first and provide for security and privacy second. When a company is considering adopting or, even more importantly, creating new technologies, boards must demand that these technologies conform to their cyber risk determinations and that cybersecurity be included by design from the outset.
4. Familiarise yourself with cyber ratings and assessments
Many corporate leaders believed that by adding yet another cybersecurity tool or service, their company would automatically become more secure. FALSE – That in itself is not enough in today’s world. With greater experience and sophistication, analysts can move from inputs (what tools do they use) to outcomes (what do the tools achieve) to effectively and accurately assess how well a company is ensuring its cyber resilience.
5. Embrace cooperation
Cyberattacks used to primarily be the work of isolated individuals, such as criminals or hacktivists, but today they are increasingly caused by networked adversaries, such as organised crime groups and nation-state-backed actors, making individual defence consistently more challenging.
As a matter of demonstrating the current effect of corporate cyberattacks, above is a table with a few statistics showing the increase of cyberattacks exploits within global business. Most cyber-experts believe that the increase in the cyberattacks are compounded by socio-lockdowns wherein some of the unsavoury elements within the global community use their time to develop, test and launch an increasing number of cyberattacks.
It is therefore critical that corporate leadership take digital protection seriously and make it a focal point during these testing times. Cyber defence champions in all forms of business should escalate their efforts in ensuring the sanctity of the corporate landscape. To get a comprehensive cyber defence strategy, it is advised that businesses consult with experts within the digital forensic and cybersecurity environments.
Cyber defence in all forms of digital forensic and cyber security is an ongoing battle.
If you have any inquiries, please don’t hesitate to contact:
Mr Roshan Morar, Managing Director, Morar Incorporated
Toll-Free Number: 0800 212 553