Until a year or so ago, every single IT system in FAO (Food and Agricultural Organization) was run in-house and everyone seemed content to leave it that way. The IT Division was the first to see the obvious benefits that cloud-based services could bring, especially for a highly decentralized organization (present in more than 100 countries) where building and maintaining a Wide Area Network and localized services such as email was expensive. The cost angle alone was reason enough to explore cloud options.
To move forward we had to analyze everything from efficiency promises to technical capabilities, costs and internal controls to confirm that the gains outweighed the potential risks, and taking into account our special status.
While FAO does not have the financial risks that commercial organizations need to consider, the reputational risk of exposing potentially sensitive or confidential data relating to our member countries is a major concern. In addition, we were aware that FAO’s reputation as an impartial intergovernmental forum for addressing issues of global concern must be upheld.
We were also very conscious of our duty – like that of any other organization – to protect the personal data provided to us by our personnel and others…
Ransomware or malware that locks up data and demands payment for its release is set to evolve and make up the majority of cyber attacks in 2017, according to most predictions by security commentators.
Cyber attacks that exploit weaknesses in mobile devices and devices that make up the internet of things (IoT), including distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, are also expected to continue from 2016.
However, in 2017, experts predict an increase in professional, advanced attacks – including attacks on cloud infrastructure – and the rise of data manipulation attacks, further underlining the need for a fresh approach to data security.
Perhaps the most disturbing prediction is that as defenders look to artificial intelligence (AI) to bolster security, this will be mirrored in the cyber criminal world by AI-driven attacks.
Overall, the pace and variation of exploits driven by technically astute adversaries will only gain momentum if not managed effectively, said Mike East, vice-president of sales in Europe at CrowdStrike.
What will not change, he said, is that all businesses will be vulnerable as attack targets, whether they are a Fortune 500 company, a family-run business or a utility company.
Digital is increasingly exposing government incompetence and how remote from the real life of people so many in government are (particularly at a senior level)
Data is your most valuable asset, but depending on how you treat it, its potential can either be fully realized or it can become toxic.
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