Global Survey Highlights Increasing Threat of Network Risk

August 1, 2005

Almost 60 percent of Chief Risk Officers and senior risk managers view network risk as a significant and growing threat to their organizations, according to the latest quarterly Corporate Business Barometer, conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by ACE European Group.

Network risk and the threats of data and systems crime are also seen as a significant threat to business reputations, which could seriously undermine public confidence in a company’s brand and products.

The latest global survey of 230 senior risk managers found that network risk and regulatory risk achieved top ranking in terms of threats facing business today. In addition, almost 50 percent of respondents cited reputational risk as a significant threat to their organisations.

Shaun Cooper, ACE’s senior network risk underwriter, commented:

“These results are not surprising given the increasing importance of data storage and transfer in today’s global economy. The results merely confirm ACE’s own experience within the IT risk sector that relatively few companies out there have so far taken action to cover themselves in the event of network failure or the loss of data, not to mention the consequential reputational damage”.

“Equally disturbing is risk managers lack of understanding the ‘tech speak’ used within the IT community. ACE calls upon both parties to work in partnership to better understand the issues they face and to work together to mitigate greater exposures. ACE sees the current lack of dialogue and joint recognition of the threats as a key emerging risk in today’s risk environment.”

“The Economist Intelligence Unit findings should act as a wake up call to business to take the threats of network risk more seriously and to take action to mitigate the risk.”

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