VIEW: Risk in Focus 2020

For the second year running, cyber security has been identified as the number one business risk faced by organisations in Europe. These are the findings of Risk in Focus 2020, our fourth annual report analysing the business risks faced by organisations across Europe.

Cyber security and digitalisation have both appeared in the top three risks over the last two years. This year the number of chief internal auditors citing cyber security as a top five risk has increased by 18%, further strengthening its position as the clear number one risk.

The increasing burden of regulatory change felt by businesses with the introduction of GDPR and new legal frameworks for online payments is also analysed. It advises businesses to consider whether they are taking a sufficiently forward-looking approach to regulatory changes, for instance, a regulatory implementation calendar.

Cyber security is a problem we regularly see on the news from the theft of 500 million Marriott hotel guests’ personal information, to the security breach which exposed 50 million Facebook user identities. Risk in Focus 2020 includes guidance for businesses to better manage the cyber risks they face.

Risk in Focus 2020 also analyses the impact of regulatory change after the introduction of GDPR and new legal frameworks for online payments. This risk is likely to become more severe for UK and Irish businesses, as they face the prospect of further regulatory change because of Brexit.

Digitalisation has led to huge technological advances from artificial intelligence to blockchain. Risk in Focus 2020 contains guidance for businesses about taking advantage of the opportunities that come with digitalisation and support in managing the associated risks.

I urge businesses and other organisations to use the guidance in this report to better protect themselves against the biggest risks they are facing, particularly from cyber security, regulatory change and digitalisation.

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