The Sony hack of 2014 has made businesses consider putting processes in place to respond to cyber attacks that aim to cause widespread disruption.
Gartner said that it expects 40 percent of enterprises to have processes in place by 2018 to deal with cyber business disruption, which poses a different threat to more traditional theft hacks for credit card data.
Paul Proctor, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner, told V3 that, while firms have never considered cyber attacks that aim to cause nothing but disruption, the Sony incident has woken executives up to the problem.
"Such incidents are few and far between and when they have happened in the past, such as the hack on Saudi Aramco in 2012, this has been viewed as a nation state on nation state-style attack," he said.
"Sony made people realise that they could face the possibility of an attack occurring against them that does not go after data, but merely aims to cause disruption."
Proctor cited the example of an agriculture firm coming under attack from an environmental group.
"The firm may not have any credit card or other financial data but, because people disagree with what they do, they may come under attack," he said.
Such an attack could see key data wiped, computers rendered unusable and all sorts of embarrassing data leaked online.
Proctor said that businesses that do put cyber disruption strategies in place must realise that it requires coordination from all c-level executives, not just IT.
“You need to consider how you would run your business if your computers were not here. That’s a business question, not just an IT one,” he added.
Proctor said that the Sony hack also appears to have made executives more cautious about the information they commit to email, after sensitive information about Sony's contracts with Netflix and high-profile actors were leaked.
"The release of emails has got a lot of executives wondering whether they need to use the phone more," he said.
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