Cyberattacks Are A Top Concern of World Leaders in 2019
What keeps you up at night? For leaders surveyed for the latest edition of the World Economic Forum's Global Risks Report, cyber attacks rank in the top 10 of their concerns. The report offers a unique perspective on the threats facing our world, by looking at not only those risks that are most likely, but also those that would have the biggest impact.
Risks posed by our increased reliance on technology, as well as risks to the global economy, and societal and geopolitical risks are also big concerns in terms of likelihood and impact.
Cyber-attacks feature at number five for likelihood and seven for impact, while data fraud is at number four for likelihood, reflecting an overall trend as technology shapes the risk landscape.
Last year saw numerous data breaches, with millions - if not billions - of people’s data affected, as well as continued cyber attacks on both public and private institutions and businesses.
The vast majority of respondents (82%) expected the risk of cyber attacks leading to theft of money and data to increase in 2019, with 80% believing they would disrupt operations. The survey says this “reflects how new instabilities are being caused by the deepening integration of digital technologies into every aspect of life”.
What’s the methodology?
The report’s findings are based on the annual Global Risks Perception Survey, which asks the Forum’s network of business, government, civil society and thought leaders to gauge the risks facing our world.
The survey has four parts, which are outlined as follows:
1. The world in 2019. Respondents were asked whether the risks associated with 42 issues would increase or decrease this year relative to last year.
2. The global risks’ landscape. For 30 global risks, respondents were asked about their likelihood in the next 10 years and its potential impact.
3. Interconnections between pairs of global risks. Respondents were asked to select three to six of the most strongly interconnected global risks.
4. Connections between risks and underlying trends. Respondents had to first identify up to three trends that will shape the global agenda in the next decade. They then had to pick three risks that are most strongly driven by these trends.
The Global Risks Report 2019 is released ahead of the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in Davos. As well as identifying potential dangers facing the world in the coming year, the report urges governments and organizations to address the impact of specific threats and make preparations to contain potential fallout should they occur.