Cyber threat dominates corporate risk watch going into 2022, feed into business interruption and regulatory risks


Cyber threat dominates corporate risk watch going into 2022, feed into business interruption and regulatory risks


Cyber threats have risen to top the list of corporate concerns, not only bringing sleepless nights on their own account, but heaping onto already hefty concerns of business interruption (BI) and of regulatory and compliance risks, the 2022 Allianz Risk Barometer has shown.

Cyber was named amongst top risks by 44% of Allianz corporate survey panellists, an increase of four points from the prior year survey to put cyber back in first place.

"Covid-19 continues to cast its shadow but it is a digital pandemic – cyber risk – returning to the top of the rankings (it last held this spot in 2020) that is one of the standout findings of the Allianz Risk Barometer," authors wrote. "Ransomware and other disruptive forms of cyber-attacks continue to bedevil businesses, while potential risks from digitalization and the shift to remote working are driving growing concern."

Ransomware and data breaches are the top concerns following on the increasingly proven ability of cybercriminals to act wholesale and at multiple levels. But a third of the corporate panel also loses sleep over threats of disruption to digitally managed supply chains and cloud services, the survey showed.

Cyber is also the most feared cause of the survey's No. 2 overall threat, business interruption, far outranking natural catastrophe and logistics as the source of potential problems.

Business interruption is now listed by 42% of the survey panel to fall to second place globally, but still topping the list in some key markets, including, Germany, France, China, Canada and the US.  2022 is only the third time in the survey's 11-year history that business interruption is not the top ranked risk.

"The pandemic has exposed the fragility and complexity of modern supply chains, and how multiple events can come together to cause problems, raising awareness of the need for greater resilience and transparency – 45% of respondents said recent supply chain disruption had had a large impact on their sector," authors wrote.

Natural catastrophe risks are the biggest gainer in the top ten, up 8 percentage points year on year in the survey to be listed by a full quarter of the panel, the third highest ranking business risk.

Don't mistake natural catastrophe for climate risk. Climate change is ranked sixth, cited by 17% of participants, a four point increase over the prior survey. "Awareness of the risks of climate change is growing among companies," authors wrote of the highest ever position in the ranking.

The risk of pandemic outbreak has mercifully fallen from the leaderboard heights, but is far from out of view. The No. 4 business risk for 2022 is cited by 22% of survey participants, just over half the prior year rate.

Legislation and regulation are the No. 5 risk, frequently an add-on to concerns over other highly-ranked concerns, cyber security and climate sustainability & resilience.  Fire/explosion, markets, labour shortages and macro trends round out the top ten picks.

The 2022 Allianz Risk Barometer, the eleventh to date, was built on a survey of 2650 corporate leaders from 89 countries and 22 sectors conducted October-November 2021.

Allianz, Risk Barometer, Cyber threat, Climate change, Business interuption, Regulator risk, Insurance, Global

Intelligent Insurer