2020 became the year of change for many companies in almost every aspect. The situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic had to be tackled in a way that allowed businesses to keep working, yet follow all the public health recommendations to reduce the chances of spreading the coronavirus.
This emergency built up a new work-from-home culture which encouraged even faster development of the digital world and increased unwanted consequences. By adopting new technologies and going online to interact with teams, customers, and friends, users become the potential victims of scams. This is the digital risk world – an essential part of business risk management!
According to the Risk-Based Security Report, the total number of data “breached” records of 2020 increased by 141% compared to 2019 and hit 36 billion.
The good news is that the way to actually manage digital risks exists. Digital Risk Protection (DRP) is a proactive defensive strategy that starts with a deep understanding of potential threats and leads to a set of preventive measures.
A problem well stated is half-solved? Well, let’s take a look at the main types of digital risks
Cybersecurity risk Companies rely heavily on technologies to support their remote teams. Therefore the risk of cyber attacks that targets computer information systems, networks, and personal computer devices, is growing. The most common types of cyber attacks are DoS and DDoS (denial-of-service and distributed denial-of-service), phishing, malware, and password attacks.
Workforce risk Previously the main workforce problems that caused risk to businesses were employee turnover and lack of skills. But work-from-home style becomes a way bigger issue. The security of home networks can not be fully controlled. Personal devices used to perform work tasks usually are not so protected. Furthermore, the Covid-19 situation turned out to be a real mental challenge to people around the world.
Third-party risk Companies use products or services offered by third-party providers in order to improve digital processes. Despite of contracts, set of laws and regulations, there is a high risk to lose control of data. Furthermore, most outside parties are digitizing their risk functions at a relatively slow pace posing a disturbing danger for their clients.
Compliance risk is related to any requirements or rules driven by new technology or regulatory authorities. For instance, the market expansion can lead to unforeseen costs since the government regulations of each country require businesses to adopt solutions that comply with technology laws of these particular countries.
Process automation risk refers to changes in processes from automation: incompatibilities, lack of resources, management issues, etc. Moreover, the lack of comprehensive understanding of automation tools (especially AI-based) can create long-term risks.
Data privacy risk is related to the ability to protect the personal information of team members and customers. Failing to ensure data safety remains the problem of controversial cases and can lead to various issues ranging from negative publicity to lawsuits.
What can be done to clear away the digital risks? The actions vary depending on the company. However, the main concept that can be followed is digital transformation. According to MIT, this type of transformation is not about technology, but “about how technology changes the conditions under which business is done, in ways that change the expectations of customers, partners, and employees.” The idea is not to build the wall to defeat your business from all the threats, but to feel safe because you know the enemy and can protect your team, customers, and the business itself. This process takes time and requires a strong willingness to adopt a completely new vision of business management through smart, autonomous technologies. And this is the way to turn DRP into an investment, not a cost.