A cyber challenge for 2016

skills for publishing

This is a guest post from Tom Chalmers, Managing Director at IPR License, on publishing and the growing risk of cyber attacks.

On the back of my last blog post, it was interesting to read a comment made at the recent FutureBook Conference by HarperCollins UK CEO Charlie Redmayne when he urged publishers “living in a rose-tinted world” to beware the threat of cyber attacks which are “increasingly sophisticated and are happening all the time”.

Data breaches are certainly not restricted to the publishing world. We’ve seen many high profile examples in recent times as data has proved itself to be more and more valuable in the modern age. It was recently reported in Tech Week Europe that British businesses forked out between £1.46m and £3.14m on average due to security breaches last year – yet data breaches are becoming such a common occurrence that firms are becoming blasé about the costs involved. This is a staggering amount which will only grow as the development of the technological age continues.

On the flip side, technology has also worked to create a huge number of opportunities to boost existing revenue streams – such as licensing, ebooks – and open up a variety of potential new ones.  However, we have to balance these opportunities with mitigating the growing risks attached to cyber attacks in a variety of forms.

Smart, connected systems are evolving at a rapid pace, and increasing numbers of users are taking advantage of services that will simplify and enhance their lives. Be this internally or to the end consumer. The emphasis for publishers of all shapes and sizes to be innovative and effective in their online activity is escalating, especially when it comes to introducing a range of technological solutions.

Key components in this remain speed, clarity and simplicity. These are not elements that publishers have always been good at but, in a new technological age, we must do better to deliver the right kind of solutions and ramp up our engagement channels with customers and strategic partners.

As always a year is a long time and much can change; let’s hope 2016 will continue to be a year of change for the better as cyber security levels are heightened and more people utilise technology in the right way.

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