Research carried out by Accenture as part of its annual Technology Vision report1 confirms that less than 30% of business and IT executives in the UK know how diligently their partners are working regarding security.

While much has been done to tighten security in the wake of GDPR to make data processing and handling more secure, companies still have a long way to go to become more robust in preventing cyber-attacks.  

This isn’t just about scrutinising your own company’s policies, processes and ability to deal with any online security breach. Security also permeates partner organisations and individuals who may have access to all or part of your data and therefore have the potential to willingly or unwillingly become the source of a leak or breach. This suggests that businesses could be vulnerable through partner networks as well as their own IT and security structures.

Marshal Luusa, Accenture Scotland’s Security Lead, said: “Savvy business leaders know it is a mistake to get complacent around security. Security investments are becoming a critical consideration when companies are looking to work in tandem or partner with other organisations and individuals.

“Risk management should be a standing item on any Board’s agenda as the hackers and malware specialists are already mobilising to target each new technology that comes to market. Before you sign a new partnership arrangement make sure your Head of Security has also considered the risk they could bring to your business.”

“The report shows that 84 per cent of respondents are already planning to use AI-powered technologies. If companies don’t have adequate measures to identify and address security breaches in their IT now, then they become even more at risk of compromise if their security cannot cover the adoption of the new emerging technologies.”

Key findings of the Technology Vision 2019 report include:

-7 in 10 businesses may be particularly vulnerable to malicious attacks through their ecosystem
-56% rely on trust alone