Cyber security emerging as a top business risk

13 June 2017

Leon Fouche, National Leader, Cyber Security |

Cyber security is emerging as one of the top risks on organisations’ corporate risk registers – regardless of their location. The World Economic Forum has also raised cyber attacks as a risk that will impact the global economy. With this in mind, it is clear that no business in today’s modern and interconnected landscape is immune from the reach of this growing trend.  

Although many organisations have realised the benefit in being proactive by starting to invest in improving their cyber security, more work needs to be done to ensure they become more resilient against cyber events. 

Cyber criminals are becoming increasingly agile and sophisticated. Many are now targeting industry sectors rather than individual organisations so as to expand their reach. The “WannaCry” ransom attack on the health care sector in May is a high profile example. 

In response to such a rapidly moving threat environment, many Governments and regulators are putting in place more stringent legislative requirements on data protection and reporting of data breaches. Here in Australia this will see the introduction of the Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Act 2017 by February 2018, and in Europe the EU has introduced General Data Protection Regulation. 

Making sense of these regulations, the impact of cyber attacks and how to best protect your organisation can seem complex, and quite often it can be. In an attempt to help break through this, BDO has contributed to Financier Worldwide’s 2017 Cyber Security & Risk Management Annual Review. Many of our member firms, including Australia, have provided detailed insight into key cyber trends and developments in a number of international regions.

You can access the report here.

Complementing this for Australian and New Zealand businesses are the findings of our BDO and AusCERT 2016 Cyber Security Survey. This annual survey identifies the current state of play in our local cyber landscape and highlighting views on what may lay ahead. You can review the 2016 trends by downloading the 2016 BDO and AusCERT Cyber Security Survey Report via our website. You can also register your participation in the 2017 survey, due to commence soon, which will give you access to valuable benchmark data to assess the resilience level of your business.

To learn more about how to improve the cyber resilience of your business or to obtain a detailed assessment of your current activities and defence measures, please contact me.