Cyber attack was named the top threat to business continuity for the second straight year in the fifth annual Horizon Scan Report published by the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) and the British Standards Institution (BSI).
The 2016 survey polled business continuity managers from 568 organizations in 74 countries over the span of 8 weeks. The results of the survey showed that 85% of respondents considered cyber attack a threat. Data breach was the second-most perceived threat, with 80% of respondents naming it a concern.
Cyber Attack Top Threat in 2015
This was the second year in a row that cyber attack was named the most worrisome threat in the Horizon Scan Report. In the 2015 report, 82% of the managers polled feared a cyber attack, while 75% feared data breaches.
“2015 saw a number of high profile businesses across the world hit by cyber attacks, so it’s reassuring to see that so many are aware of the threat it poses,” said BSI Chief Executive Howard Kerr about the report’s findings. “Our research finds it to be the top concern in six out of the eight regions surveyed. However, we remain concerned to see that businesses are still not fully utilizing the information available to them to identify and remedy weaknesses in their organizational resilience.”
2016 Survey Results
In addition to cyber attack and data breach, other threats named in the report’s top 10 list include terrorism, unplanned IT or telecom outages, and weather.
According to the survey, this year’s top 10 perceived threats to business continuity are:
- Cyber attack
- Data breach
- Unplanned IT & telecom outages
- Act of terrorism
- Security incident
- Interruption to utility supply
- Supply chain disruption
- Adverse weather
- Availability of key skills
- Health and Safety incident
Making its first appearance on the annual list, availability of key skills is a new area of concern for continuity managers. 13% of respondents indicated that they are ‘extremely concerned’ about the availability of talent, with 34% ‘concerned’ about the threat.
“It is difficult to conceive that either investors or employees will be reassured that the leaders of the organizations they trust are making strategic decisions without an effective evaluation of risk,” said Kerr. “Ultimately, organizations must recognize that, while there is risk, and plenty of it, there is also opportunity. Taking advantage of this means that leaders can steer their businesses to succeed by not just surviving, but thriving.”
Learn more about the 2016 Horizon Scan Report at www.bsigroup.com.