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Information and cyber insecurity is second most risk factor in Indian industries: FICCI

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NEW DELHI: 'Information & Cyber Insecurity' has been ranked as the second biggest threat to businesses in India, for two consecutive years.

The high rating points to the fact that it is a persistent risk for both private and government sectors in a high-technology driven global economy, where a growing trend is the rise in cyber-aided hacking. Information insecurity along with infringement of intellectual property and corporate fraud remain some of the crucial concerns in business strategy, across sectors and geographies.

A study of FICCI shows that information and cyber insecurity stands at 9.71 per cent out of an overall rating of 15 per cent, only next to strikes and labour unrest.

Interestingly, strikes and closures, crime, and workplace violence and sexual harassment are the top three threats in the media and entertainment sector.

The India Risk Survey 2016 shows that information and cyber insecurity is the third most risk factor in south India, while Intellectual Property Theft is the second largest risk factor in east India.

But among sixteen sectors surveyed, it is the top most risk factor in government and public service undertakings, financial service, IT/ITES (where intellectual property theft is the second biggest risk factor), and telecom, and the second most risk factor in education.

The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) recorded a total of 7,201 cases under the IT Act in 2014, showing a 65 per cent rise from 2013. Symantec estimated one million web attacks every day in 2015. A SophosLabs research ranked India at No. 5 among the countries with the highest percentage of endpoints exposed to a malware attack. The spear-phishing campaigns targeting employees has increased by 55 per cent in 2015.

‘Information & Cyber Insecurity’ is a persistent business risk in a high-technology driven globalised economy. Indian companies are increasingly being targeted, which is reflected in the high-risk rating given by the Government & PSU and Telecom sectors to risk of ‘Information & Cyber Insecurity’. With increase in the number of people.accessing the internet through any mode, computers or hand-held devices, and the growth of revolutionary financial transaction platforms for online shopping and payments, this risk is definitely going to increase further.

Government data sourced from the NCRB shows a total of 7,201 cases were registered in 2014 under the IT Act,16 which registered a 65.3 per cent rise in cyberrelated cases as compared to 2013. Greed or financial gain accounted for the maximum 18 per cent of the cyber-crime cases. In real terms, it stood at 1,736 out of 9,622 cases.

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