Cyber security threats have never been more perilous. PwC reckons 90% of large organizations suffer a security breach — and the number of breaches doubled last year, costing firms up to £3 million each. Whether you can keep your business secure will determine whether you swim or sink.
Bertrand Monnet, chair for criminal risk management at EDHEC Business School, says: “The threat has to be addressed not just by technicians but by the head of the company. Because they are in charge of performance and cyber crime can totally destroy your company's performance.”
Despite the magnitude of the problem, the field of cyber security management is nascent. Some 77% of organizations are unprepared for cyber security breaches, according to NTT Com Security’s Global Threat Intelligence Report.
And a recent Accenture study found that 31% of companies beleive a lack of training or budget is their single biggest inhibitor to combating attacks.
To equip corporations with the digital skills needed to fight the war on cyber crime, business schools are launching specialist courses, which cover everything from threat intelligence to terrorism and illicit networks.
“As it’s become a permanent part of the landscape for corporations, it’s becoming a permanent part of the landscape for business schools,” says Jean-Pierre Auffret, director of the MSc in Secure Information Systems at George Mason University’s School of Business.
Three weeks ago, 50 senior tech executives and policymakers piled into Harvard’s Kennedy School campus in Cambridge. Its cyber security course, “The Intersection of Policy and Technology”, now in its third year, aims to bring together techies and government leaders to address critical threats.
“Business leaders, government leaders, and public servants are all so concerned about cyber security that the issue sits right at the top of any corporation,” says Tad Oelstrom, faculty chair. “There is a distinct possibility that this [hacking] could be hugely damaging to companies.”
The executive education program, which runs for five days, costs $7,600.
At California’s Stanford Graduate School of Business, close to Palo Alto, the heart of Silicon Valley, MBAs can draw on Stanford’s synergies with the cyber security hub. The joint MBA/MS in Computer Science also leverages Stanford’s engineering prowess.
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