ACE Survey Shows Data Loss is Top Operational Risk Threat

March 16, 2007

One in three global businesses see loss of data as a significant threat and the key issue to address in operational risk management planning, according to the latest global risk briefing report conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and sponsored by ACE European Group (ACE).

The survey of 181 senior executives and risk professionals revealed that loss of data was the most important consideration in terms of operational risk, with over 40 percent saying their organization focused more on loss of data than other issues – including systems failure, human error and even natural disasters.

The results mark a growing risk management trend towards a greater emphasis on the operational impact of data loss.

“The survey shows that risk managers clearly understand the value of data and, increasingly, are focusing on its associated losses,” said Gareth Tungatt, senior underwriter specializing in IT and Cyber Risk at ACE.

“I see this report as providing the evidence to show that more businesses are looking ahead in terms of their business continuity planning,” Tungatt continued. “Seventy-one percent of those questioned said that they have increased the time and resources they dedicate to focusing on their business continuity programs.”

The survey showed that over half of respondents think that the volume and severity of operational risks have increased in the last three years but reassuringly, a similar number were confident that their business’s operational risk planning would successfully manage areas such as risk assessment and quantification.

When asked about the business impact of poor planning, 43 percent of respondents identified reputational damage as the main threat. However, only 19 percent said loss of revenue.

“The apparent lower level of fear about loss of revenue is a concern,” Tungatt said. “Based on the survey’s findings exposure to financial losses is expected to increase so it is clear that businesses should be doing a lot more than they currently are to counter the financial implications of data loss.”

Source: ACE

Topics Trends Profit Loss

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