Cybercrime an increasing threat to the coffers of Irish businesses | #cybercrime | #infosec

CYBER ATTACKS are numbered among the biggest threats faced by businesses this year, with the cost of cybercrime to businesses predicted to reach $8 trillion US dollars (€7.4 trillion) by the end of this year.

That’s according to business and financial services company Grant Thornton, who have issued a warning to businesses across the country to increase their anti-cyber attack infrastructure as the threat posed by hackers becomes more sophisticated.

Research by Grant Thornton found that as much as 47 per cent of mid-level businesses now list cyber attacks among their chief concerns in threats to business continuity, and predict the overall costs to businesses to grow to as much as $10.5 trillion USD (€9.7 trillion) by 2025.

Despite this, Grant Thornton says, Irish organisations and business remain “unprepared”.

“Cyber threats have escalated significantly in recent years and will continue to do so,” said Mike Harris, cyber and forensics partner at Grant Thornton.

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“Coupled with increasing digitalisation, this rise means that organisations are more likely than ever to have to deal with a major cyber attack. Unfortunately, many Irish organisations remain unprepared. They see cyber as a purely technological issue and not as a business risk that demands senior management and board attention.”

Mr Harris suggested that companies need to “implement basic cyber hygiene and culture across the business, manage the security of suppliers, and practice the response to a cyber attack” in order to minimalise threats and protect both business continuity and client data safety.

“If senior management drives these steps, it will go a long way towards protecting the organisation. And remember, you’re not just protecting yourself, you’re also protecting your customers and business partners.”

According to Grant Thornton, consumers may also be set to feel the pinch as businesses offset the rising cybersecurity costs with increased prices.

“Many businesses have tried to absorb some of the rising costs,” a representative for the company said. “However, in isolation, this response is clearly not sustainable, and 51 per cent of mid-market businesses expect to increase selling prices over the coming year, which will directly affect consumers.”

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National Cyber Security