Information security spending will climb despite economic woes: Ernst & Young

    TORONTO, Oct. 22 /CNW/ - Despite tightening economies worldwide, 50% of
companies surveyed are set to increase their information security budgets,
Ernst & Young reports.
    "A single security incident can destroy years of brand and reputation
building," said Kent Kaufield, Ernst & Young's National Technology Security
Risk Services Leader in Canada. "Organizations now recognize security setbacks
can adversely affect stakeholder perceptions. Regulatory compliance once drove
information security improvements. Today, however, organizations are strongly
motivated by a need to protect their brand and their reputation against
potentially devastating media coverage of security breaches."
    Ernst & Young's 2008 Global Information Security Survey found most survey
respondents believe a security incident would have a greater impact on
reputation and brand than on revenues. Eighty-five percent cited damage to
reputation and brand as significant, compared with 72% for loss of revenues.
Only 68% cited regulatory sanction.
    "It's crucial for organizations to spend their information security
budgets wisely. It's not enough to simply fund technical solutions such as
encryption. Businesses need to develop training and awareness programs, and
adopt more sophisticated testing techniques," Kaufield said.
    The survey canvassed nearly 1,400 senior executives in more than
50 countries. Only 5% of those surveyed plan to decrease their current
information security budgets. Other key findings include the following:

    -   International information security standards are gaining greater
        acceptance and adoption.

    -   Many organizations still struggle to achieve a strategic view of
        information security.

    -   Privacy is now a priority, but actions are falling short.

    -   People remain the weakest link for information security.

    -   Growing third-party risks are not being addressed.

    -   Business continuity is still bound to information technology.

    -   Most organizations are unwilling to outsource key information
        security activities.

    -   Few companies hedge information security risks with cyber insurance.

    About Ernst & Young

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For further information:

For further information: To receive a copy of this year's study or to
speak to a spokesperson, please contact: Amanda Olliver,, (416) 943-7121; Julie Fournier,, (514) 874-4308; Brooke McLachlan,, (604) 899-3597

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