Manufacturers in the UK, as per a new research, are highly prone to Cyber attacks, especially owing to weak investment in protection against cyber crime.
As per a survey conducted by the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) for the manufacturers’ organization EEF and AIG, though there have been widespread attacks, the manufacturing sector continues to be the least protected against cyber crime. The survey report says that almost half of British manufacturing companies have been targeted by cyber attacks and almost a quarter of these companies have suffered financial loss or disruption to their business.
As per the report, the manufacturing sector is now the third most targeted sector for cyber attacks. 41 percent of all companies in the sector, as per the survey, do not believe they have access to information that’s sufficient for them to make a clear assessment of their true cyber Risk. 45 percent of respondents in the survey feel that they don’t have access to the right tools that are needed for the job.
EEC comments- “Cyber threat is holding back companies from investing in digital technologies, with a third of those surveyed nervous of digital improvement. Moreover, a worryingly large 12 per cent of manufacturers admit they have no technical or managerial processes in place to even start assessing the real risk. ”
As per the report, it’s through poorly protected office systems, often the first implemented historically within manufacturing businesses, that the easiest forms of cyber attack come through. EEC notes- “The report looks at a number of real-life examples, including two where production systems were infiltrated and severely disrupted after hackers gained access to their IT systems by initially hacking into unprotected office software, used to keep HR and admin records.”
Stephen Phipson, chief executive of EEF says, “More and more companies are at risk of attack and manufacturers urgently need to take steps to protect themselves against this burgeoning threat. Failing to get this right could cost the UK economy billions of pounds, put thousands of jobs at risk and delay the supply of essential equipment to key public services and major national infrastructure projects. I hope this report underlines the critical risk to government and industry”.
Romaney O’Malley, the Head of Industrial Segments, AIG UK, states- “There is evidently significant need for greater awareness and understanding of the importance of cyber risk management, not only to protect existing businesses, but to create more secure environments to grow and capitalise on the potential that digital technology advances bring to manufactures”.
The report also discusses cyber security risk management and outlines five technical controls in cyber essentials, which are-
- Use a firewall to secure your Internet connection.
- Choose the most secure settings for your devices and software.
- Control who has access to your data and services.
- Protect yourself from viruses and other malware by using antivirus software, only downloading apps from manufacturer-approved stores, or running apps and programs in an isolated environment.
- Continually ensure your operating systems and software are up-to-date and running the latest security patches
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