Cybersecurity continues to be a major concern for companies, with approximately 44 per cent of them, in a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) survey, saying they did not have an overall information security strategy.
The survey was carried out among 9,500 companies in 122 countries.
The international professional services firm said 40 per cent of respondents cited the disruption of operations as the biggest consequence of a cyberattack. This was followed by the compromise of sensitive data 39 per cent, harm to product quality 32 per cent, and harm to human life 22 per cent.
The results of the survey also showed that 48 per cent of firms did not have an employee security awareness training programme while 54 per cent did not have an incident-response process.
Only 39 per cent of those surveyed said they were “very confident in their attribution capabilities”.
What is more alarming was that “when cyberattacks occur, most victimized companies say they cannot clearly identify the culprits” PwC said in a press release issued on Friday.
“Massive cybersecurity breaches have become almost commonplace, regularly grabbing headlines that alarm consumers and leaders. But for all the attention such incidents have attracted in recent years, many organizations worldwide still struggle to comprehend and manage emerging cyber risks in an increasingly complex digital society,” it said.
PwC recommended that businesses undertake some key steps to “prepare effectively” for cyber attacks. The advisory firm suggested that businesses take ownership of building cyber resilience and setting a top-down strategy to manage cyber and privacy risks while doing so as “a path to rewards and not merely to avoid risk”.
PwC also recommended that businesses purposely collaborate and leverage lessons learned.
“Industry and government leaders must work across organizational, sectoral and national borders to identify, map, and test cyber-dependency and interconnectivity risks as well as surge resilience and risk-management,” suggested Global Cybersecurity Leader at PwC David Burg.
Risk Assurance Leader for PwC Caribbean Bruce Scott suggested that a tremendous amount of financial data could be impacted negatively by the risks of cyber attacks, pointing out that the upside was that “these pressures have led to the fine-tuning of best practices when it comes to cybersecurity in financial services”. (PR/MM)