The days of physical intruders being the main threat to business security are fast coming to an end, a leading security firm’s executive has declared, and he has suggested that businesses here must seriously consider global realities of cybercrime and corporate espionage coming here.
The warning came from the executive vice president of G4S Corporate Risk Services, Robert Dodge, as he spoke at G4S’s Ideation Seminar at Hilton Hotel this morning.
He told the audience that given the value of information, Barbadian businesses can no longer see themselves as outside the radar of the growing threat.
“Intellectual property in all of its forms, if lost, puts your companies at risk. If that key information leaks, it can put your enterprise out of business. This is what a lot of corporations are facing and while it may not be all here today in Barbados, I can guarantee that it is coming.”
The security executive explained that quite often business people are misguided into thinking that the security threats exist on the outside and correct firewalls are all that is need to prevent hacking.
But Dodge pointed out firewall protection was insufficient to meet cybersecurity threats, which he said quite often can come from an insider, sometimes unwittingly, and that guarding against this is not a simple task.
He identified hotels as quite vulnerable, as they are treasure troves of credit card information and guests’ personal data.
The G4S executive said: “I have seen a lot of stuff at hotels around the world and physical security does a great job of keeping out problems such as the prostitution rings and so on.
“But we have found things like electronic USB devices that have been uploading ghost key logger software.
“Luckily, we found them in time because this could have taken everyone’s credit card information and absconded with them.”
Ins some cases, employees had no idea that the threat was even present, he said.
Dodge told the seminar that often physical threats are localised and may affect very few people, while on the other hand, cyber threats can have potentially devastating consequences for many people at a time.
He said: “These are the types of things we are seeing where the virtual world meets the physical world. The younger generation that is fluent with this technology is having a serious impact on corporations.
“In one’s risk assessment, one must factor in the impact that these threats could have on your business.
“In setting your security programme, one’s systems, software, and people must be all aligned towards mitigating that threat.”