Survey: More organizations prioritizing cybersecurity in past year

Concern over the state of cybersecurity has led to 23 percent more organizations making improvements to their security systems since last year, according to the 2018 Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO survey.

One of the largest IT surveys, the report included responses from 3,958 chief information officers (CIOs) and technology leaders from 84 countries.

“Technology disruption continues to play a significant role in today’s business environment and, while more CIOs understand the importance of implementing a digital strategy, most are still struggling with integrating digital into their core processes to address business goals,” said Denis Berry, KPMG principal and U.S. CIO Advisory leader. “What tends to hold technology leaders back is the lack of trust in relying on digital to guide decisions. This disconnect is largely due to the absence of proper talent who fully understand how the technology can drive the business strategy. Companies who can source the right skills and establish a clear digital vision will be the ones who will benefit the most from these opportunities.”

Findings included:

  • 23 percent more respondents than last year reported prioritizing improvements to cybersecurity in response to the increase in threats.
  • Managing operational risk and compliance has increased 12 percent among IT leaders.
  • 77 percent of IT leaders are most concerned about the threat of organized cybercrime, an increase from 71 percent last year.
  • 22 percent of IT leaders did not think they were well prepared for a cyberattack.
  • The demand for employees with “security and resilience” skills increased 25 percent.
  • 78 percent of CIOs believe their digital strategy is only moderately effective.
  • 35 percent of companies reported being unable to hire or develop the employees with the digital skills they need.
  • 9 percent of companies reported no clear digital vision or strategy.
  • Companies with chief digital officers were twice as likely to have a pervasive digital strategy than those without one.

"Data is shaping the business world from head to toe. We see it in the urgency of right now with the need to protect data privacy and ensure data integrity. We see data shaping the future as machine learning and AI advancements push beyond data analysis into a place where IT systems are combing, learning and reacting to data with strategic solutions," said Bob Miano, President & CEO, Harvey Nash USAPAC. "With so much dependent on the protection and promise of data, the next five years will be a continued struggle to find, recruit, and retain skilled data science and analytics professionals."