The cost of cybercrime is set to hit $8 trillion this year, according to new research by Grant Thornton.
It states that online fraud and scams are anticipated to cost firms $10.5 trillion by 2025, as hackers grow more sophisticated.
The findings show that 47% of mid-market business leaders now list a cyber-attack as a threat to their business for the coming year.
“Cyber threats have escalated significantly in recent years and will continue to do so,” said Mike Harris, cyber and forensics partner at Grant Thornton.
“Coupled with increasing digitalisation, this rise means that organisations are more likely than ever to have to deal with a major cyber-attack,” he added.
Despite this, today’s research reveals that many Irish companies are still not prepared for such an event.
“They see cyber as a purely technological issue and not as a business risk that demands senior management and board attention,” said Mr Harris.
“Business leaders need to understand the cyber risk, implement basic cyber hygiene and culture across the business, manage the security of suppliers and practice the response to a cyber-attack..
“If senior management drives these steps, it will go a long way towards protecting the organisation,” he added.
Inflation is another top three risk for businesses globally this year, as cited by over half of mid-market business leaders.
That concern is even greater amongst Irish businesses, 65% of whom cite inflation as a threat to their company.
Although the global economy has shown resilience through recent challenges, the findings show that the cost of living, increased energy bills and rising interest rates continue to affect both businesses and consumers.
“While inflation rates do finally appear to be reducing, it remains a concern for businesses,” said Andrew Webb, Chief Economist at Grant Thornton.
“Connected to this concern, 69% of Irish businesses identified energy costs as a threat, making it the highest ranked threat by Irish business leaders and underscoring that any economic optimism is still accompanied by a sense of caution,” he added.