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The cyber security threat stops in the boardroom

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The attitude that ‘it won’t happen to me’ still prevails in the boardrooms of industry when senior executives consider the threat of targeted cyber intrusions. Not much has changed in the commercial world of cyber security over the past few years; hackers are not being challenged to find new ways to steal companies’ intellectual property and confidential information. The consequences of even major security breaches seem not to be felt by the leaders of victim companies. Why is this so? Surely IT security practitioners are seeking new ways to detect and prevent targeted intrusions into companies’ networks? Are the consequences of targeted intrusions so insignificant that the captains of industry tolerate them? Or do only others feel the pain of their failure? This paper initially explores the failure of cyber security in industry and contends that, while industry leaders should not be alone in accepting responsibility for this failure, they must take the initiative to make life harder for cyber threat actors. They cannot wait for government leadership on policy, strategy or coordination. The paper then suggests some measures that a CEO can adopt to build a new corporate approach to cyber security.
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Keywords: CEOs; IT security managers; Threat and Risk Assessment (TRA); coporate governance; corporate security; cyber security; penetration testing

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2014

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  • Journal of Business Continuity & Emergency Planning is the essential professional journal publishing peer-reviewed articles and case studies written by and for business continuity and emergency managers.

    Each quarterly 100-page issue combines provocative thought-leadership pieces – which expand what can be achieved with business continuity and emergency management – with detailed, actionable advice and ‘lessons learned’, showing how programmes have been specified, designed, implemented, tested and updated, as well as how interruptions, emergencies and exercises have been managed in practice. The journal focuses on key strategic and business issues – not technical minutiae – with no advertorial or advertising.

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