The full extent of UK companies exposure to cyber-attacks has been laid bare in a new study compiled by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport which found two-thirds of bosses at Britain’s largest firms have had no training in how to handle such incidents.
This comes despite growing corporate awareness of cyber security as an issue in the wake of high profile hacks affecting the likes of WPP and TalkTalk, which have both endured significant disruption at the hands of hackers.
Despite learning the hard way how damaging such incidents more than 68% of FTSE 350 firms were found to have received zero training in how to manage such crises with a paltry 2% having benefited from ‘comprehensive training’ to handle matters in an expeditious manner.
Matt Hancock, the government’s digital minister, remarked: “Recent cyberattacks have shown the devastating effects of not getting our approach to cybersecurity right. These new reports show we have a long way to go until all our organisations are adopting best practice.”
Such clarion warnings have not gone entirely unheeded in corporate boardrooms however with more than half of all respondents citing cyberattacks as one of the biggest risks they face, up from just 29% in 2014.
A spate of hacks in recent years has seen TalkTalk lose personal information for more than 150,000 customers after its systems were breached by a 17-year-old boy. More recently WPP suffered a cyberattack of its own, crashing its IT systems.