Cyber Risk: Are You Equipped for the Rapidly Changing Landscape?

Kira Ciccarelli
The ever-increasing need to safely protect data has resulted in increased reliance on digitization; cybersecurity has become integral to business continuity. Every year, we witness an increased number of cyberattacks on companies' data.

Cyberattackers frequently target the C-suite and the board because they have greater access within a corporation. What also makes them easy prey is that they have a wealth of influential contacts and are privy to valuable confidential information.

Strengthen Your Organization's Cybersecurity

The time is already here for organizations to invest in advanced and up-to-date systems, as these are less likely to be compromised in an attack. It is also important to understand that cybersecurity should be considered a companywide goal and embedded in overall strategy. To facilitate modern governance, risk and compliance best practices, companies must invest in cybersecurity education for all employees, including the C-suite and the board, to ensure that the company as a whole is informed and abreast of the ever-changing cyber landscape.

A lack of awareness concerning cyberattacks exposes companies to serious risks. What may start as a phishing attack on a staff member's email can quickly spiral, leading to data exposure, significant monetary loss and considerable reputational damages.

The Importance of Cyber Expertise on the Board

In a recent report published by the Diligent institute, Beyond the C-Suite: Trends in Director Skill Sets, we discovered that, according to our sample, the appointment of directors with a traditional background (a former or current CEO, CFO or COO) still accounts for the majority of new directors since 2019 in the U.S., U.K. and Australia. However, there is a gradual shift to new appointees with other backgrounds, such as technology. Though not all expertise backgrounds can be represented in the board room, having a tech-savvy board is critical to protecting against cyberattacks; bringing on directors with technology expertise is one way to ensure that these discussions are being elevated to the boardroom with regularity and rigor.
''Today's board needs to understand that technology is an area that is not going away soon. Having people who understand it on the board would be beneficial to any company.'' Dr. Dambisa Moyo, Co-Principal of Versaca Investments, Global Economist, Author & Board Member
Leading boards and organizations have learned to appreciate the worth of such practical expertise on their team. A board should be able to present well-considered challenges, often based on experience, to the management's team recommendations on a variety of issues, including cybersecurity.

To learn more about empowering your board to effectively oversee cyber risk, download our free white paper, Assessing Your Cyber Risk Score.