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Asia manufacturers show security 'disconnect'

Region's manufacturers display ignorance of security events taking place within their organizations yet are "very or extremely confident" of protecting their data, new survey shows.
Written by Tyler Thia, Contributor

A "shockingly high percentage" of Asia-Pacific manufacturers have no idea what security events occur within their organizations. However, three-quarters of these companies express strong confidence in their abilities to protect company data, a new survey showed.

Released Tuesday, the IDC study showed that 58.3 percent of organizations in the region do not know how many security events took place in their organizations in the past 12 months while 63.9 percent are ignorant over what the nature of these security events are. These figures in Asia-Pacific are higher than the worldwide average, which stands at 55.1 percent and 54.2 percent, respectively.

When these respondents are asked to assess their information security measures, 77.8 percent said they are "very or extremely confident" that the company's information is protected from external attacks, while 69.4 percent had displayed similar confidence toward internal attacks, the survey showed. 

"The disconnect between perception and reality suggests that Asia-Pacific manufacturers are not as aware of their security risks and threats as they think," said William Lee, senior research manager for IDC Manufacturing Insights, in a media statement.

"Clearly, manufacturers in this region need to step up their awareness programs to get up to speed on their knowledge of the security risks and countermeasures that exist today."

Carried out over December and January this year, 36 respondents from six Asia-Pacific countries took part in the two-month study.  

Rise of CISOs
The survey also showed that compared to five years ago, information security has climbed up the list of priorities among management-level executives. The emphasis in security is attributed to a combination of factors, including increasing challenges in the new economy, rise in cybercrimes and the growing complexity of terrorist threats, IDC stated.

The role of Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) have also taken on added importance, with 33.3 percent of the manufacturers indicating that their organizations' security chiefs now report directly to the CEO, while the remaining report to either the CIO, CTO, CFO or board of directors. This "clearly signifies" a rise in rank of the CISOs within organizations, according to the research firm.


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