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Cisco cybersecurity study - the gap between attitudes & execution

January 2018 by James Longworth, Head of Solution Architecture at Insight

Cisco released its Privacy Maturity Benchmark Study, highlighting the effect of poor cyber security on sales and other key business metrics. James Longworth, Head of Solution Architecture at Insight, commented on how this study reveals a gap between organisational attitudes to cybersecurity and actual execution:

"The road to (business) hell is paved with good intentions, and this research has revealed that this is especially the case when it comes to cyber-security. Organisations which don’t deploy effective data protection don’t only often pay the price to a tune of over a third of a million pounds - they also suffer all the reputational consequences too.

“It is in this context that so many suffer sales delays as customers agonise over their data privacy; the issue of data protection has become so prominent that it is now a major feature in many purchase decisions. In our own research, we found that the majority (54%) of business leaders feel that it’s very important to their customers to know where their data is being stored. And yet there remains a gap between this commendable attitude and actual execution. This same proportion (54%) of respondents who highlighted the significance of giving customers the peace of mind of knowing where their data also admitted to finding it extremely challenging to store data securely.

"The key to effective cyber security is to understand that vulnerabilities don’t solely originate with technology, but with people. Consider the modern flexible employee – accessing company information on the move, carrying everything they need on mobile devices, and working with sensitive data every day, regardless of job function or department. Employees are on the frontline of the cyber security war, and organisations therefore need to look beyond the IT department to establish good cyber-security awareness and practise across the organisation.

"However, organisations should not neglect the importance of investing new technologies such as analytics or artificial intelligence. It is only by pairing such tools with strong, all-encompassing training programmes, that organisations can best safeguard themselves and their customers from the many threats of today. The key to driving this dual approach will be working with trusted partners who have deep expertise in cyber security and executional nous to match.”

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