Cybersecurity: a C-suite responsibility (not just the CIO)

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Businesses challenged by the Connected Generation to protect networks, data and company reputations with shared effort, strategic focus and vigilance

“CEOs must know that there are two types of companies: those that have been hacked, and those that don’t yet know they’ve been hacked,” says Clayton Naidoo, Regional Sales Manager and one of Cisco’s cybersecurity subject matter experts. “CIOs know the threats, but CEOs must lead the process of protecting their networks, data and assets (tangible and intangible) as more people and devices are connected across more networks,” adds Naidoo.

The ‘Connected Generation’

The need for consumers and workers to connect and collaborate any time, on any device, and from anywhere, has created a paradox for businesses: simplifying control, access and usability in the face of increasingly complex connectivity. Integral to managing the growing number of connections globally demands corresponding levels of security while cyber criminals increase their levels of sophistication. As the pace of change in the Networked Economy increases with the adoption of machine learning, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things (IoT), CEOs are challenged to leverage technology for competitive or operational advantage so that their companies are prepared for the security risks that come with increased connectivity.

CEOs recognise opportunities and risks

Cyberattacks or major disruptions of the Internet remain some of the top concerns among CEOs globally. They also recognize that when people, processes, data and machines are connected over the Internet there are enormous opportunities to create new revenue streams, customer experiences and efficiencies.

“The benefits of moving to the cloud outweigh the risks, and in order to remain agile and competitive, CEOs must ensure that their companies are digitally adept across the value chain. Security is not just a CIO’s job. It is a boardroom issue,” concludes Naidoo.

Factoids and notes to media:
Clayton’s bio may be accessed here.
Cisco stops an average of 320 million cyber-attacks daily (ACR)
The worldwide market opportunity for security is growing at a CAGR of 8.7% from $72B to $93B by 2018 (Gartner)
Cisco estimates that the world-wide shortage of security professionals is more than a million (2014 - update)

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