At a Turning Point: Enterprise Risk Management Evolves into Integrated, Digital Risk Modeling

Cyber-attacks. Data breaches. Increasingly complex regulatory requirements. Supply chain challenges created or exacerbated by geopolitics and the global pandemic. As enterprise risk management grows more demanding by the day, companies’ processes, protocols and technology have not kept pace.

The expanding cyber defense gap is of special and growing concern at the highest levels of government and business:

  • Former US Defense Secretary Bob Gates recently called cyber-attacks “the most dangerous weapon in the world — politically, economically and militarily.”
  • White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan recently contacted leading software companies to explore ways to improve digital security in “the latest sign of the administration’s growing concern over cybersecurity,” Reuters reported.
  • The JPMorgan International Council — which includes government leaders from around the world and CEOs of major multinational companies — is urging the public and private sectors to step up cybersecurity efforts.

Thankfully, technological advances have opened the door to integrated, digital risk modeling, or IDRM. This capability is a key part of the solution sought in Washington, Silicon Valley and corporate boardrooms around the world.

Traditionally,  risk officers have established enterprise risk programs to address these issues. Initiatives are built upon risk frameworks and supporting governance that include risk and compliance committees, risk assessments, risk registers, and periodic risk reports to the C-suite and board. In the past, these governance efforts have typically been well received.

In most cases, however, these programs have not been able to keep pace with the growing threat landscape. As an example, monthly or quarterly reports do not equip company leaders with the up-to-date information necessary to prevent and proactively defend against today’s aggressive cyber-attacks and data breaches. Compounding this problem, risk assessment data often is collected and analyzed manually in spreadsheets and operational silos.

This piecemeal approach leaves you and your organization unable to quantify, benchmark, or compare risks across the enterprise, hampering your ability to implement sound risk mitigation strategies. The tried and true practices of the past, simply are not enough for today’s complex world.

Risk Analysis Leads the Way

A key part of the solution is emerging from the realm of risk analysis: the use of digital tools that capture, integrate, and visually present real-time data that helps you to quantify, benchmark, and predict – proactively – the impact of threats and vulnerabilities.

This type of integrated, digital risk modeling enables you and your organization to:

  • Continuously monitor risk exposure based on your unique operational data and circumstances, not general industry information and assumptions. This identifies specific organization threats so they can be addressed proactively.
  • Eliminate risk-assessment silos, see threats and vulnerabilities in context, weigh and compare their potential impact, and inform priorities and decision-making.
  • Present comprehensive, enterprise-wide reports in a clear, intuitive, unbiased format that leads to more consistent and accurate decisions at various management levels.
  • Calculate and predict financial exposure by quantifying the cost of each threat. In this way, you can set priorities and rapidly respond to your most significant challenges.
  • Customize your risk monitoring and the way you analyze and report on the information collected, so risk modeling will reflect your organization’s unique strategic objectives and risk profile.
  • Compare company-specific, real-time risk scores against industry benchmarks to track your progress against peers.
  • Run risk scenarios to see worst and best cases in order to plan your investment and resource assignment.

As teams responsible for enterprise risk management increasingly turn to IDRM, your organizations will be better prepared to effectively address the multiple fast-changing, high-stakes risks that are faced today and tomorrow.

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