Vodafone says cyber security is linked to business growth

Natalie Bannerman
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New data from Vodafone indicates that cyber security is directly linked to business growth and enhanced reputation

A new survey from Vodafone has discovered a strong link between how cyber security is used and business success. 

The report entitled Cyber Security: The Innovation Accelerator, surveyed more than 1,400 small, medium-sized and multinational corporations across USA, UK, Ireland, Germany, Spain, Italy, India and Singapore. 

Commenting on the research findings, Andrzej Kawalec, Vodafone Group head of enterprise cyber security strategy & innovation, said: “Cyber security has evolved beyond simple protection of the status quo and is being used by companies of all sizes to support and accelerate innovation and growth. It is giving businesses greater confidence in opening up new markets and introducing new services. While we are seeing a desire to create cyber ready organisations, companies are not sure about who best can help them. I believe that the most successful companies will be the ones which design in security from the start and use it as springboard.”

The data showed that 86% of high growth companies see information security as a business enabler not just a means of defence. In addition, 89% of businesses said that improving cyber security enhanced customer loyalty and trust. 90% said that enhanced its reputation in the market and attracted new customers. 89% said that information security was a competitive advantage that would help it win customers. 

In particular companies that use cloud computing or internet of things (IoT) technologies reported greater returns from the way they use cyber security. 24% of IoT adopters said that they experienced an increase in financial benefits including improved business agility.

Due to the increase in customer needs and their growing awareness of cyber threats, the expense of cyber security is increasing at a similar rate. 87% of businesses expect spending on cyber security to grow in the next three years, with 10% of businesses expecting that budget to double.

Despite this awareness around the need to cyber security nearly half (41%) of security decision makers admitted to not knowing where best to find the help needed to deal with cyber security challenges. A staggering 52% of businesses in the engineering and construction sector said they wouldn’t know where to turn to for cyber security advice. 60% of small businesses in general said that it felt ill formed about security.

Attitudes towards cyber security also differed geographically. 55% of Italian businesses said that they worried about cyber security affecting itheir business, while in Singapore and the US that number rises to 73%. 

Generally speaking, the report found that smaller businesses are more concerned with permanent loss of data while larger corporations are more worried about security compliance and regulation.