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NZ Govt: Cyber security belongs in the boardroom, not the IT department

26 Feb 16

The Government is claiming the issue of cyber crime belongs in the boardroom, not the IT department.

Following the release of the 2016 Global Economic Crime Survey from PwC, Communications Minister Amy Adams says chief executives and chars need to focus on growing security risks.

The PwC survey found that 40% of New Zealand organisations have experienced cybercrime over the past two years, but only 45% of all organisations have a cyber incident response plan. The report places New Zealand 19th out of 115 countries.

“The Global Economic Crime Survey is a welcome and valuable report for New Zealand businesses looking to better understand the range of threats in today’s modern operating environment,” Adams says.

However, Adams says the report is a sobering read and is a call to action for chairs and chief executives to focus on managing the growing cyber security risk to their businesses.

“It’s important that companies create strong security cultures with actively engaged boards, because ultimately this isn’t an issue that directors can ignore,” she explains.

Adams says with 29% of companies reporting a cybercrime incident, it’s vital that New Zealand businesses understand what data they hold and create.

“Boardrooms around the country need to consider cyber vulnerabilities as a key business risk and address this as part of management processes,” she says.

In December, Adams launched the refreshed New Zealand Cyber Security Strategy, which she says highlights the need for the corporate sector, including operators of critical national infrastructure, to have policies and procedures in place to mitigate cyber security threats. 

“The Institute of Director’s Practice Guide for Directors is an excellent resource for board members to ensure they have a good sense of their responsibilities and cyber security best practice,” Adams adds.

“New Zealand’s first ever Cyber Security Summit in Auckland on 5 May will bring together leading business and government leaders and provide an opportunity for to demonstrate their collective commitment to cyber security,” she says.

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