is hosting #CCAD16 – Cybercrime Awareness Day 2016 on Monday 24th October in the Royal College of Physicians. The event will highlight the risks facing businesses from cyberattacks and why companies need to educate and protect themselves.

European Cyber Security Month (ECSM), is an EU advocacy campaign that promotes cybersecurity among citizens and advocates for change in the perception of cyber-threats by promoting data and information security, education, sharing of good practices. This event will be the only Irish ECSM accredited event to take place during the month.

Among the keynote speakers will be Minister of State at the Department of An Taoiseach, Regina Doherty TD, the newly appointed Head of the Garda Cybercrime Unit, Detective Superintendent Michael Gubbins and renowned author and Guardian journalist Luke Harding, who has just finished work on Oliver Stone’s film Snowden.

Speaking ahead of the conference, Minister of State at the Department of An Taoiseach, Regina Doherty TD commented “Cybercrime is a real challenge for all of us and one that will continue to grow and develop as we continue to make technological advances. It is vitally important that we combat cybercrime to protect people from a danger of the digital age. As a Government we recognise the importance of developing a strong legislative and enforcement response to cybercrime and we are acting to make that a reality.

Public awareness is a key part of tackling cybercrime and I am delighted to be taking part in Magnet’s Conference on Cybercrime Awareness Day, Monday October 24th.”

Mark Kellett, Chief Executive of Magnet Networks explained: “The frequency of cyberattacks against Irish businesses has almost doubled from 25% in 2012 to 44% currently which is considerably higher than the global average of 32%. These figures are expected to escalate unless dramatic action is taken to combat these cyber threats.”

“A lot of existing safeguards which companies use are no longer adequate. Our new methods of working are also posing an enormous threat. Staff having access to multiple devices (laptops, tablets, smartphones etc) and using them in multiple locations, not just the office, as well as the adoption of cloud-based technology, are all creating a perfect storm of vulnerabilities for Irish businesses.”

Mark Kellett went on to say: “Further statistics illustrate that four in five business are hacked and it can cause companies to lose earnings and also, in some cases, cease trading”.

According to Magnet’s 2016 Regional Business Barometer, the potential of cyberattack is worrying Irish businesses. The survey found that businesses are more concerned in 2016 (20%) than they were the same time last year (4%). There is good reason to be worried as the frequency of attacks has almost doubled and the effects can be devastating.

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