Is your data crisis management plan in the clouds?

Australia’s ‘catch-up’ with the digital age highlights the power of information security to make or break your business plans today. China’s recent cyber attack on the Bureau of Meteorology’s computers – although denied by China – is a timely reminder to all Australian businesses and governments that such actions can compromise sensitive systems across the whole public and private sectors.

The much welcomed recent moves by academia, business and government for Australia to ‘catch-up’ with other nations in the development of our technology innovation sector brings this to the fore even more.

It is reinforced by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s announcement of a push to protect the nation’s commercial and strategic secrets from cyber attack.

Digital crisis management now should be high on the agendas of all risk committees.

As we move towards the magical 2020, issues and crisis management plans can mark the difference between business success and failure in effective responses to digital attacks.

The Melbourne-based information security firm Trusted Impact highlighted in a recent survey that key business objectives, such as revenue growth, product quality, time-to-market, customer loyalty, company reputation and shareholders value are all at risk if information security is not interwoven into the fabric of the digital organisation.

The pace of change is such that in the past decade, we have lost iconic brands, such as Encyclopaedia Britannica, Kodak and Yellow Pages to the digital age. Their demise highlights the adage that a ‘stitch in time, saves nine’ is just as relevant today as it was in the 18th Century when it was used as an incentive to the ‘lazy’ to fix a small hole before it became a larger one.

The ‘lazy’ organisations today will quickly have large reputational problems tomorrow because of global news services if their IT, communication and management people are not aligned in their mitigation responses.

The very nature of organisations moving more and more data to Cloud is a perfect example of the need to ‘be aligned and prepared’. Losing visibility as to who has access to your data in Cloud poses the question: “How do you do ‘incident management’ in a cloud environment?”

This question illustrates the large gap between those who will respond WELL to an incident to those that respond POORLY. A clear strategy as to how to develop and implement the issues and crisis management plan for 2020 is today’s ‘stitch in time’.

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