Major data breaches affecting 1 in 3 GCs

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A new report by the Association of Coroprate Council (ACC) has revealed that a third of in-house counsel globally have experienced a corporate data breach.

In Australia and New Zealand, only 8 per cent of in-house counsel said their security spend has increased due to the increasing threat. The global average was around 23 per cent.

Australians and Kiwis were both well behind the global average on cybersecurity insurance, with only 25 per cent of companies reporting that their company has it, compared with 47 per cent globally.

But, a staggering 50 per cent of in-house counsel globally reportedly want to increase their role and responsibility regarding cybersecurity. Fifty-seven per cent expected the role of the legal department would increase in next 12 months. 

Larger companies were found to be at a higher risk, with internal factors the leading cause, many respondents reporting that the breach was a result of an employee error or an inside job.

“The report shows that thirty-six percent of in-house counsel within Australia have experienced a data breach at either their current or former company,” said ACC vice president and managing director Tanya Khan.

“Unfortunately, no sector or region is immune. The findings indicate that general counsel expect cybersecurity risk to only increase in the upcoming year.”

The report, the ACC Foundation: The State of Cybersecurity Report, surveyed companies internationally, the largest study of in-house counsel on the topic.

Australian and Kiwi companies were far more confident in the coping ability of the law firm they employ when it comes to cybersecurity, with 36 per cent saying they were ‘very confident’, compared with the global confidence average of just 22 per cent.