Are companies not realistic on cybersecurity?

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Indian executives contributed to a statistical improbability when a huge portion of those surveyed about their cyber security efforts considered their organisation as “above average or better” in cyber preparedness over competitors (see graphic). In fact, Indians outnumbered the global average of 76% respondents who felt their cyber security efforts were better, a survey by analytics firm FICO has found. The survey was conducted by research firm Ovum on behalf of FICO.

Indian financial servicesand utility industry executives were found to be “least realistic” with 100%rating their firms as above average or top performers, while retail serviceshad the highest percentage who said their firms were top performers at 60%.

This — coupled with findings that 8% have no robustassessment program in place — makes the study conclude that a lack of anobjective measure of cyber risk could be behind India’s overoptimistic view.“It is statistically improbable that such a high percentage of companies isbetter than average,” reads the report.

Cyber crime victims in India lost nearly $18.5 billion lastyear, less than 
China ($66.3 billion), Brazil ($22.5 billion) and the US ($19.4 billion).

Vishal Goyal, country manager (India) at FICO, said that despite anincrease in the intensity of cyberattacks as the country goes digital,complacency creeps in when companies simply don’t pick up on data breaches.“It’s important to ensure regular robust assessments by bringing in analyticsand other emerging tech for continuous monitoring of network infrastructure,”said Goyal.

With regard to risk expectations, 56% of the Indianrespondents expect cyberattacks to rise in the coming year, 42% say they’ll remainthe same, and 2% expect them to drop — a trend that was in line with views frommost other countries surveyed.

Cyber security investments in India seem to be primarilydriven by expectation of increasing threat and pressure from customers alongwith lesser concern on privacy regulations & legal implications of a breach(16% and 14%, respectively) .

The survey — conducted through telephone interviews with 500senior executives across financial services, telecom, retail and 
e-commerce, and power & utilities —concluded that Indian organisations seem to be realistic about overall levelsof risk and expect it to increase, but are not as realistic about their owncyber security readiness.

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