Interactive Cyber Breach Workshop – London Tech Week

Cyber Security

London Tech Week is officially underway, and the UK tech scene is taking centre stage to showcase the city as a leading innovation hub.

FieldHouse Associates

Whilst the UK is fast becoming a leader in technology, the biggest discussions this week will involve 5G and its security implications.

As our world continues to be shaped by digital, cyber protection is one of the most pressing issues for business executives, compliance officers, data protection officers, information and IT security executives, legal counsels and insurers.

The UK is more vulnerable to cyber-attacks than ever before, and attack techniques are evolving fast and becoming technically more complex. More than 14,000 data breaches have been logged since the introduction of GDPR last May, according to the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).

The last thing any business wants is to be a lesson for others.

As an agency, we have a number of cybersecurity clients and are always wanting to keep our ears close to the ground on the latest developments and conversations circling around cyber.

The FieldHouse team attended the London Tech Week workshop led by international law firm DAC Beachcroft LLP. Their team did a roleplay where the audience acted as external advisors on how a company who had fallen prey to an attack (a fictional dating app for pets called Tinfer) should respond, with characters including the CEO, a member of the ICO, a hacker, an aggravated customer, and a journalist.

The storyline followed a CEO’s week from hell and the audience were given the opportunity to choose the course of action he should take in response to the various issues presented by external and internal stakeholders in the aftermath of the breach. The session tackled important issues such as distinguishing the risk of the data breach, GDPR requirements, when to involve the ICO, how/when to notify data subjects affected and – vitally important – how to deal with the media who come knocking on their doorstep.

As cyber is top of mind for business executives across the globe and so many summits, conferences and workshops are dedicated to supporting businesses manage the risk of attacks, it was refreshing to see a session which delved into the step-by-step process on how to respond in the first week. A crucial time, which can be a make or break moment for an effected business.

Whilst there wasn’t a PR consultant on the panel, the session did touch on the importance of having a communications strategy in place. The moderator discussed the need to balance the risks and benefits of getting executives in front of the media. Whilst being in front of the media means executives have a degree of control of the message, it can easily be a company’s downfall if they do not have the right information at hand or an executive isn’t effectively media trained.

Whilst a business won’t know when they will be hit by a data breach, the workshop emphasized the importance of having a breach response plan in place to mitigate the legal, financial and reputational damages which arise.

How well a business responds will determine the fate of the company …