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Building Cyber Resilience: Strategies to Strengthen Organisational Security and Enhance Cybersecurity Readiness for CEOs

Updated: Jan 15

To address cyber hazards effectively, CEOs should prioritise the following strategies:

  • Improve board governance: CEOs should advocate for stronger board support, challenge, and governance. Research shows that board members often lack cyber expertise, highlighting the need for critical reviews of board committee composition, access to external tech experts, and benchmarking of cyber oversight best practices. Resources like governance seminars and leadership certifications can help board members enhance their understanding of IT and cybersecurity.

  • Assess and quantify risks: Senior leaders must fully understand the financial and business implications of potential cyber risks. Utilising risk transfer market methodologies, such as those used by cyber insurers, can provide valuable insights for decision-making, sensitivity analyses, and escalation of defences. Connecting cyber risk factors to financial loss probabilities enables organisations to determine tolerable business interruption exposure.

  • Conduct readiness simulations and crisis management: CEOs should ensure preparedness for potential business interruptions caused by cyberattacks. This involves identifying scenarios that would warrant operations halt and designating senior leaders with final decision-making authority. Simulations and crisis exercises enable organisations to test their crisis management capabilities, enhance response strategies, and improve overall readiness without incurring real-time risks and costs.

  • Establish robust disclosure policies and procedures: Given the new SEC cyberattack reporting requirements, organisations face increased pressure to promptly and accurately report breaches. CEOs should implement well-defined and tested protocols to assess breach scope, containment, and reporting requirements. Regularly reviewing, benchmarking, and testing cyber response disclosure procedures ensures their effectiveness, efficiency, and clarity. Neglecting to establish such protocols may result in confusion, credibility issues, and exacerbated consequences during a cyber-crisis.

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