Cyberattacks’ greatest monetary impact on financial firms: Report

Cyberattacks’ greatest monetary impact on financial firms: Report
14 Feb, 2018

Cyberattacks show greater monetary impact on the financial services industry than on any other, according to the findings of a study.

The average cost of cybercrime response for financial services firms has increased more than 40% globally over the past three years, said a joint report by consulting and outsourcing services firm Accenture Plc and data security research organisation Ponemon Institute.

For financial services companies, the average cost of cybercrime has increased from $12.97 million (Rs 83 crore) per firm in 2014 to $18.28 million (Rs 117 crore) in 2017, according to the study. This is higher than the average cost of $11.7 million (Rs 75 crore) per firm across all industries, added the study. 

The report also notes that, although cyberattacks have a greater financial impact on the financial services industry than on any other, financial services firms continue to make investments in security technology. Most of the spending is on advanced solutions such as security intelligence systems, followed by automation, orchestration and machine-learning technologies, the study said.

“While the cost of cybercrime for financial services companies continues to rise, our research found that these companies have considerably more balanced and appropriate spending levels on key security technologies to combat sophisticated attacks than do those in other industries,” said Chris Thompson, senior managing director at Accenture. “This is particularly true with regard to the use of automation, artificial intelligence and machine-learning technologies, which could be critical to future cybersecurity efforts.”

The report also shared that the average number of cybersecurity breaches per financial services firm has more than tripled over the past five years, from 40 in 2012 to 125 in 2017.

"Nearly two-thirds (67%) of financial services companies’ total security costs is spent on containment and detection of cybersecurity breaches. The greatest impacts of cybersecurity breaches on financial services firms are business disruption and information loss, which together account for 87% of the cost to respond to cybercrime incidents, with revenue loss accounting for only 13%," the report showed.

It also showed that despite cyberattacks being frequent in the financial sector, only 26% of financial-services companies have actually deployed artificial-intelligence security technologies, and fewer than a third (31%) use advanced analytics to fight cybercrime.