Cloud adoption outpacing security teams’ ability to manage risk

Cyberattacks are an escalating threat to today’s business as was evident by the recent ransomware attacks that affected more than 230,000 computers in 150 countries. As more companies turn to technologies such as cloud, they are potentially more vulnerable to cyber-attacks which not only impact IT but an organization’s operations and customer experiences.

If staff lack awareness of cyber security fundamentals, an organization’s IT-focused measures can lose their impact, especially as they transition to cloud infrastructure. This means there is a critical need for greater awareness on cybersecurity as key to reduce attacks, in a cloud adopted environment.

The state of cybersecurity in Hong Kong

Hong Kong, the financial hub of Asia, is no stranger to cyberattacks. The latest Telstra Cyber Security Report highlights Hong Kong as one of the most at risk countries in Asia.

The report indicates that 14.7% of organizations in Hong Kong experience security incidents on a weekly basis. To some organizations in Hong Kong this may seem sobering, but with the recent high profile attacks, it has shown us that this has become the new normal for organizations. This means that all businesses must determine their acceptable level of risk and work with suitable partners internally and externally to manage it appropriately.

Managing the risk of the cloud

This is true when dealing with virtual cloud environments. This type of technology delivers significant agility and portability benefits, but at the same time, means that organizations are now dealing with new security and business risks. In Asia, according to our report, 93% of organizations currently use cloud services, and this number is expected to grow in the next year. Of these Asian countries, cloud adoption is the highest in Hong Kong.

Interestingly, our study indicates that 43% of Asian organizations are prepared to manage the risks of data theft, whilst 63% of them classify theft of corporate data to be their top threat. In Hong Kong, alone, 27% of companies view data theft as a top threat. This suggests that even though most organizations are either currently using or considering the use of the latest cyber security tools, they still lack the confidence in dealing with data theft incidents in the cloud. The fact that organizations are prepared to take such acknowledged risks speaks to the urgency of their move to cloud services.