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Cyber incidents now trigger the same level of corporate concern as business interruption events, which had ranked as the top global peril for seven years, in the annual Allianz Risk Barometer 2019, released Tuesday.
Munich-based Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty SE said that climate change, workforce skill shortages and legislative/regulatory changes also are major concerns for corporations.
Survey participants were asked to name up to three risks that they were concerned about for their industries.
Some 37% of respondents to Allianz’s eighth annual survey said they were concerned about cyber incidents, which was equal to business interruption, but more respondents ranked business interruption as their No. 1 concern. The impact of mega data breaches, privacy scandals and the introduction of the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation are all on executives’ minds, Allianz said.
The results, based on a survey of 2,415 experts, including Allianz customers, brokers, industry trade organizations and staff, from 86 countries during October and November 2018, found that natural catastrophes was the third biggest concern.
The annual corporate risk survey was conducted among Allianz commercial policyholders, brokers and industry trade organizations. It also surveyed risk consultants, underwriters, senior managers and claims experts in the corporate insurance segment of both Allianz Global Corporate & Specialty and other Allianz entities.
Trade wars and tariffs and ongoing uncertainty over Brexit, sparked greater concerns about changes in legislation and regulation, which moved up one spot to fourth from fifth place. But the biggest climbers were climate change, which rose to its highest-ever position in eighth place, and shortage of skilled workforce, a new entry in the global risk ranking, at number 10.
Executives rank cyber risk as the business interruption trigger they fear most -- 50% of responses -- more than fire at 40% and natural catastrophes at 38%, Allianz said.
Business interruption is also the biggest cause of economic loss for businesses after a cyber incident, according to 48% of Allianz Risk Barometer respondents.