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A global cyber storm is brewing, world forum says


Geneva – Global geopolitical instability has increased the risk of a systemic cybersecurity event.

A new report shows that 93 percent of cyber leaders and 86 percent of business leaders think such an event is likely within the next two years.

Leaders who integrate cyber risk management into their organisation’s decision-making processes are more likely to report high levels of cyber resilience.

Geopolitical instability has changed the landscape in which companies, governments and citizens operate, making cyber risk more volatile and difficult to manage. At the same time, organisations are more reliant than ever on shared technical infrastructure and service providers.

This increases the likelihood of a cyberattack becoming a ‘systemic cybersecurity event, characterised by cascading effects across communities, economies, and governments.

In New Zealand, CertNZ, the government agency that tracks cybercrime reporting, says 2600 cybercrimes were listed in the third quarter of last year, up more than 100 percent from the previous year. The overall 2022 cyber results will be released by CertNZ in March.

The most common crime involved the unauthorised transfer of money, after companies’ email accounts were compromised. But it’s not just data being accessed, it’s stock exchanges and healthcare under attack internationally, reserve banks, power grids, and hospital operating theatres.

New Zealanders are also inherently complacent. It is estimated 80 percent of cybercrime could be prevented by individuals and businesses doing some pretty simple things such as using updated complex passwords and use a password safe to protect those passwords and make it easy for you to manage them.

About 87 percent of Kiwis concede security of their personal information online is important but 40 percent say safeguarding their information is inconvenient.

Cybersecurity was a major topic of  at the World Economic Forum’s recent meeting in Davos, Switzerland. Experts warned that cyberattacks are increasing in sophistication and frequency. There’s a gathering cyber storm  brewing and it’s really hard to anticipate just how bad that will be, Davos delegates heard.

The global cybersecurity outlook 2023 report from the World Economic Forum in partnership with Accenture, shows 93 percent of cyber leaders and 86 percent of business leaders think it is moderately likely or very likely global geopolitical instability will lead to a far-reaching, catastrophic cybersecurity event in the next two years.