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Cyber security needs to be top priority for CEOs

Hyperconnectivity and the evolution in cyber attacks require CEOs to take ownership of cyber risk management, according to a new report launched today by the World Economic Forum developed in collaboration with Deloitte*.

According to the report, Risk and Responsibility in a Hyperconnected World – Pathways to Global Cyber Resilience, hyperconnectivity is drastically changing the way businesses and  governments interact, demanding a renewed examination of roles and responsibilities. The report encourages chief executives to commit to a basic set of Principles for Cyber Resilience (“Principles”), and to take the initiative to improve cyber resilience.

Recognizing the interdependence of private and public sector organizations in the global hyperconnected environment and Deloitte member firms’ role in contributing to cyber risk mitigation at a global level, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited CEO Barry Salzberg has joined a group of CEOs who have committed to the Principles.

“The impact of hyperconnectivity requires attention from the highest echelons of the corporate world,” says, Jolyon Barker, Managing Director, Global Technology, Media and Telecommunications, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. “It is imperative for chief executives and boards to protect their enterprises from cyber risks and incorporate cyber security and resilience into their everyday decision-making processes.”

Deloitte has been working with the World Economic Forum over the past year on the Risk and Responsibility in a Hyperconnected World project to identify and address emerging global systemic risks arising from the increasing connectivity of people, processes and objects. In particular, the project has focused on cyber security as a first priority, working with the private sector and governments to identify pathways to a more secure shared online environment.

“Being connected is the new normal,” says Alan Marcus, Senior Director, Head of IT and Telecom Industries for the World Economic Forum USA.”As new business models develop and non-traditional sectors are integrated into the hyperconnected world, the question of responsibility and ownership becomes critical for the viability and stability of the entire digital ecosystem. Building a common understanding of rights and responsibilities is therefore essential.”

The report also suggests to develop a tailored, capabilities-based set of guidelines for the basic legal and criminal justice components that governments should put in place to improve cyber resilience. The project will continue to develop these guidelines for policy and law enforcement communities and the interim results will be presented during the Annual Meeting of New Champions 2012 in Tianjin, People’s Republic of China on 11-13 September.

To read the full report, go to: www.weforum.org/cyber.