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By 7 January 2020 | Categories: news

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In a world where cybercriminals are using sophisticated attacks to breach industrial companies, robust cybersecurity policies and keeping up with regulations have never been more important. Disturbingly, a new survey from Kaspersky has revealed that a considerably two-thirds (67%) of industrial organisations do not report cybersecurity incidents to regulators.  

This is despite the fact that remaining compliant in modern industrial business is a necessity and a driver for investment. Admittedly,  there are a variety of factors that influence how companies follow compliance rules -from the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to standards set by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), industrial companies have a lot of requirements to adhere to.

However, Kaspersky’s State of Industrial Cybersecurity 2019 report shows that many companies are flouting reporting guidelines – perhaps to avoid regulatory punishments and public disclosure that can harm their reputation. In fact, respondents said that more than half (52%) of incidents lead to a violation of regulatory requirements, while 63% of them consider loss of customer confidence in the event of a breach as a major business concern.

Apart from incident reporting, other survey results show that companies are taking compliance very seriously, with only a fifth (21%) of industrial companies admitting that they do not currently comply with mandatory industry regulations. Crucially, organisations understand that regulatory demands must be met, despite their lack of reporting.

The report also revealed a bit of a paradox. On the one hand, it revealed that compliance is the top budget driver in cybersecurity investment strategies for 55% of respondents. However, this focus on procedures may well be leading companies to become complacent over the quality of the cybersecurity solutions and not taking into account the actual threats – with less than a third (28%) identifying the threat landscape as a key budget driver.

“Industrial compliance and regulations should not be taken lightly. But it is also very important to keep in mind the real threat landscape that is changing dynamically,” commented Georgy Shebuldaev, Head of Kaspersky Industrial Cybersecurity Business Development, Kaspersky.

“An efficient cybersecurity solution in combination with clear policy should help companies achieve the necessary level of protection in accordance with regulatory requirements. Such solutions should contain technology-oriented measures, vulnerability assessment and incident response measures, as well as security awareness initiatives for all employees who work with industrial automation systems,” he concluded. Interested parties can read the full State of Industrial Cybersecurity 2019 report here.

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