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Pandemic tops cyber risks as the biggest threat for businesses in 2020


Pandemic tops cyber risks as the biggest threat for businesses in 2020

The main risks in the next 5-10 years will relate to pandemics and infectious diseases, climate change and cyber risks, AXA says.

2020 risk reports have named economic uncertainty and cyber threats as the two biggest risk concerns for businesses in 2020 and beyond.

AXA’s Future Risks Report 2020 published last month identified the top 10 emerging risks. In support, Travelers’ 2020 Risk Index reported similar findings on the top emerging risks concerning businesses.

For the first time in several years, cyber risk is no longer occupies the #1 spot; ‘broad economic uncertainty’ leads, with cyber risk following in the #2 spot among businesses surveyed.

Among survey respondents’ leading cyber concerns, most appear to be driven, in part, by the impact of COVID-19 on business operations and workforces being forced to work remotely, Travelers found.

Roughly half (52%) of Travelers’ survey respondents say they worry some or a great deal that they will suffer a security breach, and 50% feel their financial systems are threatened by unauthorized access. At nearly the same rate, 48% believe their employees could put proprietary information at risk.

Approximately 47% of respondents cited three other main concerns: that remote work could create the opportunity for a cyber event, their organization will be taken hostage by ransomware, and client and customer records could be compromised.

Top 10 emerging risks

The AXA Future Risks Report 2020 finds that in the next five to ten years, the main risks will relate to pandemics and infectious diseases, climate change, and cyber risks.

Among other key findings, the AXA report found only 33% of experts believe public authorities are well prepared for the emergence of pandemics and infectious diseases.

On climate, less than half (46%) of North America-based experts consider climate change a major trend, compared to 71% last year.

The full Travelers and AXA 2020 risk reports can be found online.

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