Survey: Utility Cyber-Security Falling Short of Technology Changes

Survey: Utility Cyber-Security Falling Short of Technology Changes

Mar 14, 2017

by Denise Stokes; Copyright 2016 by Competitive Assets, LLC.  All rights reserved

EY’s 19th Global Information Security Survey 2016-17 results are out and it seems we are not meeting the challenges to insure cyber-security.  Entitled Path to cyber resilience: Sense, resist, react, the report summarizes the findings from a survey of 1,735 corporate leaders and IT executives/managers from many of the world’s largest global companies, not just utilities.  The results, however, are applicable to the utility grid in general.  The survey showed that 87% of top level personnel lack confidence in their organization’s level of cybersecurity, and 86% say their cybersecurity function does not fully meet their organization’s needs.  The evolving threats are outlined over several decades, with current threats including global shocks (terrorist, climate, political), business resilience, Internet of Things (IoT), Critical Infrastructure, and State-sponsored cyber espionage and cyber attacks.  The report stresses that companies “need to use cyber threat intelligence and active defense to predict what threats or attacks are heading in their direction”, and detect threats before they are successful.  They need to have resistance mechanisms in place to protect against risks, including day-to-day operations control measures, monitoring functions in place throughout the organization, and use of a strong internal audit department.  In addition, if an attack is successful, organizations need to be ready to deal with the disruption, have response capabilities in place, and be ready to manage the crisis.

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