Cyber security over-confidence putting businesses at risk

Millennial employees are most likely to leave their business open to cyber-attacks, new research has claimed.

Despite having regular exposure to digital practices, a study from T-Systems found that millennials are often lax with cyber security, regularly over-estimating their knowledge and using unsafe practices.

Around 50% of those in their twenties and early thirties described themselves as ‘very knowledgeable’ regarding cyber security, compared to an average of 36% of all employees.

However, those individuals were far more likely to follow unsafe working practices, such as recycling passwords and not changing security details on a regular basis.

Such behaviour could mean they are unwittingly exposing the devices they use to hackers, malware and viruses, thereby facilitating a possible security breach.

Scott Cairns, the UK head of cyber security at T-Systems has warned that overconfidence is the biggest problem for businesses and said that cyber-security training is a necessity for all members of the workforce.

Those from older generations were more cautious in their approaches to technology, which meant they were more likely to follow adequate safety protocol.

The study found education is an issue though, as two thirds of employees reported that they had not received any cyber security training in the last year, while 30% said they had never received any full stop.

Cyber security becomes a major issue when businesses suffer a breach, as research from PwC suggests a cyber-attack can cost UK businesses upwards of £850,000.

That figure, from the firm’s Global State of Information Security Survey 2018, showcases that attacks are occurring more frequently and with greater severity.

However, 28% of businesses were reportedly unaware of how many attacks they had suffered in the last 12 months, while a third had no idea how they had occurred.

Only 14% of UK businesses were willing to report financial losses resulting from cyber-security incidents while British firms were less likely than their global counterparts to have adequate security.

Such levels of financial loss could cause financial difficulties and even insolvency in the worst cases, as businesses may simply not be able to recover.

Any business director should seek corporate advisory services in a crisis, as there may be options available to them that they may otherwise not have considered.

By Phil Smith


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