Financial services sector is most prone to cybercrime says KPMG India

Over the years there has been a significant increase in the number of cybercrime attacks prompting organisations to stay alert, seek means to fight cybercrime threats

July 21, 2014 4:33 IST | India Infoline News Service
Over the past few years, the global cybercrime landscape has changed dramatically, with criminals employing more sophisticated technology and greater knowledge of cyber security.  India has also been a target of such cyber-attacks, to understand the nature and complexity of this crime KPMG in India has conducted the ‘Cybercrime Survey 2014’ and released the results in Mumbai.
Cybercrime continues to remain a tough challenge for organisations. Over the years there has been a significant increase in the number of cybercrime attacks prompting organisations to stay alert, seek means to fight cybercrime threats. As cyber criminals continue to develop and advance their techniques, they are also shifting their targets focussing less on theft of financial information and more on business espionage and accessing government information.
“With rise in the cybercrime, businesses are increasingly facing impacts not only on the financial front but also irreversible damage to their brands and market reputations. As a result of this growing threat, there is a significant need for corporates to recognize cyber threats and craft cyber response plans. KPMG has released the cybercrime survey report, with a view of providing insights to senior level management/board of Directors and guidance to policy makers on various aspects of managing cybercrime”, said, Mritunjay Kapur, Partner and Head of Risk Consulting practice, KPMG in India.

The Cybercrime Survey 2014’ had over 170 participants from the likes of CIOs, CISOs and related professionals from across India. Cybercrime has emerged as a major threat as acknowledged by an overwhelming 89 per cent of the survey respondents. Distinctly, about 51 per cent perceive themselves to be an easy target for cyber-attacks due to the nature of their business. Out of these 51 per cent, about 68 per cent respondents claim that they monitor their cybercrime threats on a daily basis. Although 37 per cent of the respondents feel risk of cyber-attacks comes from an external source, it is imperative that organisations keep a track of insiders with malicious intent or professional intruders constantly seeking access to sensitive information.
The survey also highlights key sectors prone to cyber-attacks. A staggering 58 per cent of the survey respondents perceive financial services sector as more likely to be prone to cybercrime. Whereas 11 per cent feel communications, entertainment and infrastructure sectors are prone too. In financial sector the value to the attacker would be internet banking and brokerage. Phishing attacks of online banking accounts or cloning of ATM / Debit cards are common occurrences. The increasing use of mobiles for online banking & financial transactions has also increased the vulnerabilities to a great extent.
According to the survey, the root cause of most cyber-attacks is monetary gain. Until recently, malware, spam emails, hacking into corporate sites and other attacks of this nature were mostly the work of computer ‘geniuses’ showcasing their talent. These attacks, which were rarely malicious, have gradually evolved into cybercrime syndicates siphoning off money through illegal cyber channels. Cyber-attackers can be classified based on various aspects such as their qualifications, skill levels, age group and motivations.
Inadequate detection processes may conceal the real number of cybercrime attacks. Although many organisations today are equipped with state of the art security systems, they may still be unable to manage.

The first line of defence against any cyber threat is increasing perception and awareness of cybercrimes suggests the report.
Sharing his views on topic, Sandeep Dhupia, Partner and Head Forensic services, KPMG in India said, “Businesses have increasingly embraced the internet for seamless delivery of products, services and to help reduce costs. However, with the leverage of technology comes the risk of cybercrime. Through this survey we have summarized trends surrounding key aspects linked to cybercrime with the objective of providing inputs to businesses in shaping their cyber risk management policies.”

“In the current age of digitization, organizations are heavily dependent on cyber technology. With geographic boundaries being collapsed in this digital era, organizations are facing threats from the virtual world wherein crimes are perpetrated by cyber criminals who leveraging on evolved eco systems like the Dark Net.  This KPMG survey provides a pan industry analysis that provides insights on key aspects like the Cybercrime threats business are facing, Cyber defence strategies that go beyond traditional IT security which businesses could employ, profiles of attacks and attackers”, added Sandeep Gupta, Partner-Forensic Technology, KPMG in India.
Organisations could gain improved value and security by adopting a preventive approach to tackling cybercrime related risks. Adopting a preventive approach towards cybercrime risk management, however, requires a cultural shift that starts with board level executives who can incorporate cybercrime related risks into the enterprise risk strategy. By doing so, leaders can quickly start to identify gaps in the current cybercrime risk management strategy and encourage an organization-wide approach to countering cyber threats.

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