Solving cyber risk

One of the greatest risks of failing to address cyber threat is that people will turn away from the very technologies that could produce rapid productivity gains over the next few years, according to a new book Solving cyber risk: protecting your company and society.

As the extent and frequency of cyber attacks grows, people are increasingly likely to see the advantages, but reject the technology as being too risky to use.

“They fear cyber attacks will cause them losses and so are reluctant to rely on digital bank accounts, transact online, or embrace further innovations that could be to their benefit,” authors Andrew Coburn, Éireann Leverett and Gordon Woo say. Their analysis showed that the global economy could lose between $4.5 billion and $15 trillion over five years, depending on the level of disconnection.

Even without this development, losses from cyber attacks are significant. The authors estimate that in the US alone, such incidents are costing businesses around $20 billion a year in directs costs and operational disruption – with a further $225 billion from lost  revenues. Add an estimated $270 billion from the knock-on effects among trading parties and counterparties and the economic cost to the US economy tops $500 billion a year.

The book is an ambitious attempt to solve the cyber risk problem. While early attempts at risk management have tended to emphasise hardware IT security, today organisations are spending more budget on staff training, incident response, and are “shifting from intrusion prevention to intrusion tolerance, compartmentalisation and ‘credential silos’ with protected endpoints, and risk management in the supply chain.”

The volume is packed with deep knowledge and interesting ideas. Unusually, its ten recommendations for our cyber future goes well beyond the confines of individual businesses and into the solutions that are needed at a global level – such as building the capacity for an international cyber prosecution system, a Marshall Plan for rehabilitating former hackers, and a Digital Geneva Convention for cyber operations to prevent state-sponsored cyber attacks from instigating physical war.

IRM members can buy the book with a 20% discount from the publisher Wiley. Click hereusing the promotional code CBN9C when purchasingSolving Cyber RiskISBN:978-1-119-49093-7.

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