12th March 2024

Allianz Risk Barometer Report 2024: Cyber incidents the biggest risk

Allianz Risk Barometer Report 2024

Every year, Allianz conducts the "Allianz Risk Barometer Report" survey to identify the greatest future business risks for companies. For this year's report, more than 3’000 risk management professionals, including CEOs, risk managers, brokers and insurance experts from 92 countries and regions were surveyed.

The results show that two risks top the list:

1st place: Cyber Incidents

Cyber incidents pose the greatest risk to organizations. 36% of respondents cited it as their top concern. For the third year in a row, and for the first time by a significant margin of 5%, cyber incidents are the top risk for businesses.

2nd place: Business interruption

Business interruption continues to be the second most feared risk for organizations, cited by 31% of respondents.

Read the full Allianz Risk Barometer Report 2024 here.

The main causes of cyber incidents are data breaches, attacks on critical infrastructure or physical facilities, and increasing ransomware attacks.

  • Data breaches: Data privacy affects all of us in our daily work and personal lives. If you and your employees fail to comply, you risk penalties and sanctions, reputational damage, financial loss, and direct or indirect personal injury to individuals.
  • Attacks against critical infrastructure or physical facilities: They pose a serious threat and can have far-reaching consequences for public safety and economic well-being. These attacks are often designed to disrupt or degrade the functionality of critical systems.
  • Ransomware attacks: Ransomware attacks typically start with spam or phishing emails. Today's cybercriminals and hacker groups use sophisticated and well-thought-out tactics, techniques, and procedures. Ransomware attacks, for example, are a concern for more than half of organizations, having increased significantly over the past year. In 2023, incidents will increase by more than 50% compared to 2022.
  • Business disruptions: Often caused by cyber incidents. Attacks by hackers, malware or ransomware can compromise an organization's IT systems and cause significant business disruption, especially if critical data is encrypted or stolen.

Many organizations are wondering what they can do to address these threats. In addition to up-to-date technical protection of the IT infrastructure, another component is needed: employees. They are the biggest potential entry point for attackers. The lack of a strong security culture and security awareness among employees significantly increases the risk of cyber incidents.

Improve your security culture and human firewall

The human factor is often underestimated. But people are critical to protecting data, information, and systems. When your employees know how to deal with cyber risks and apply this knowledge on a daily basis, it contributes to an improved security culture in the company. This significantly reduces the likelihood of a successful hack.

Through regular training, you can raise awareness of cyber threats and teach your employees how to recognize phishing emails, protect data, and other potential risks.

A security awareness strategy can help you train your employees and take your security culture to the next level. It ensures that your organization is prepared for potential threats. In addition, good planning and strategy will not only save you money, it will save you work.

By regularly measuring your security culture, you can identify and highlight gaps in your human defenses. You can also demonstrate the effectiveness of spending and training to senior management and track changes in maturity.

The bottom line:

The threat of cyber incidents and resulting business disruption is real and can have a devastating impact on organizations. By being proactive and building resilient security measures into your organization, including technical defenses and employee training, you can better protect yourself and your business from these risks and ensure your success.

Protect today to be more secure tomorrow. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

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