The Role of Cyber Security in Digital Transformation

August 4, 2023
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Resilience + Sustainable Action = Your Competitive Advantage

The world is changing rapidly, and business needs to adapt to new challenges and opportunities every day. Driving these changes are emergent automation and intelligence technologies, tools that are affecting every sector and industry. The change is deeper than this though, it's more than just new technologies, it's changing the way businesses operate, the role they play in society and how they create value.

Understanding the role cyber security plays is crucial and should be considered in all digital transformation endeavours.

Digital leaders use technology to improve efficiency, agility, innovation, and customer satisfaction. They embrace adaptive organisational models that put collaboration, communication, and empowerment at their core. Removing informational asymmetry, devolving, and speeding up decision; making them better at strategic approaches that align the company's vision, mission, values, and actions with the needs and expectations of its stakeholders.

Resilience is key to these actions. Despite UK Government statistics suggesting that approximately 80% of organisation leaders see Cyber Security as high priority, their actions aren't reflecting this. Estimates indicate that only 49% of medium businesses, 68% of large businesses and 36% of high-income charities have a formal cyber security strategy in place.

With around 3 million instances of cyber crime last year alone, and many organisations being hit multiple times, it is essential that cyber security becomes an inherent part of digital strategy.

So first things first, what benefits will digital transformation bring to an organisation?

  • Increased productivity and performance: Automating and streamlining workflows, reducing errors and costs while enhancing quality and speed. Fostering a culture of innovation, learning, and problem-solving. Enabling purpose led management that engages employees, customers, and partners by creating a shared sense of meaning and impact.
  • Improved customer experience and loyalty: Creating personalised, seamless, and omni-channel interactions. Building the infrastructure needed to create customer centricity, responsiveness, and feedback. Adding meaning by delivering value and social good to customers and society.
  • Enhanced differentiation and competitiveness: Creating new products, services, or business models that meet and exceed customer needs. Creating a start-up spirit, supporting experimentation, creativity, and risk-taking.  

As businesses respond to these competitive and market opportunities, they will increasingly focus on building sustainable jobs, retaining talent and automating repetitive tasks. Freeing teams to focus on collaborating, designing and supporting market leading services and products.

What are the threats I need to be aware of?

As more and more transactions, operations, and communications are conducted online we increase our digital footprint. That might sound obvious but it’s important to consider that increasing your digital operations increases the need to protect those workflows, automations and digital assets being built to help your organisation thrive. If you do, you won’t just keep things running when bad actors attack, you’ll build the solid foundations that let you test, experiment, grow and take risks with confidence.

According to recent UK Government research, 32% of businesses and 24% of charities have suffered attacks in the last 12 months. This is much higher for medium businesses (59%), large businesses (69%) and high-income charities with £500,000 or more in annual income (56%).

Existing in the digital world leaves you at risk from cyber threats, data breaches, privacy issues, ethical dilemmas, environmental impacts, social responsibility, human factors, and everything in between. These are not just technical problems, but also strategic, cultural, and organisational. Businesses that fail to address these risks may face reputation damage, legal liability, regulatory sanctions, customer dissatisfaction, and competitive disadvantage.

More than ever, it is absolutely essential to gain an understanding of your organisations digital or cyber risk, assessing the likelihood and impact of potential threats and vulnerabilities, and implementing appropriate controls and measures to prevent or reduce them.

This makes Cyber Security a vital foundation for the business of the future, as more and more transactions, operations, and communications are conducted online.
Surely people are more aware now of cyber security and digital risks than they were in years gone by?

With increased media coverage, you might think/hope so, but actually the data suggests the opposite ... organisations cyber hygiene is in decline. By way of demonstration, the UK Governments figures show:

  • use of password policies (79% in 2021, vs. 70% in 2023)
  • use of network firewalls (78% in 2021 vs. 66% in 2023)
  • restricting admin rights (75% in 2021, vs. 67% in 2023)
  • policies to apply software security updates within 14 days (43% in 2021, vs. 31% in 2023).

Estimations suggest that across all UK businesses, there were approximately 2.39 million instances of cyber crime and approximately 49,000 instances of fraud as a result of cyber crime in the last 12 months.

The average annual cost of cyber crime for businesses is estimated at approximately £15,300 per victim
The right cyber security for your organisation.

Resilience + Risk = Advantage.

The organisation of the future will need insights and an objective understanding of digital and cyber risk, deep sustainable behaviours and new levels of technological efficiency. Aligning people and technology for sustainable success.

Building cyber excellence in to your digital transformation strategy will deliver new levels of efficiency, resilience and advantage.

Any cyber security advice and strategy should be comprehensive and take into account the following:

  • Protecting customer data and trust: Customers expect their information to be safe when they interact with an organisation online. A cyber security breach can compromise customer data and damage the reputation and credibility of the business. Cyber security helps prevent such incidents and maintain customer loyalty and satisfaction.
  • Reduce operational costs and risks: Prevent disruption, delays, losses, or even legal liabilities. Cyber security helps prevent or minimise such disruptions and avoid the costs and consequences associated with them. All while enabling the business to comply with relevant regulations and standards regarding data protection and privacy.
  • Enhance innovation and competitiveness: Cyber security enables business to leverage the latest technologies and trends, such as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, or blockchain, without compromising its security or performance. This and more gives a any organisation an edge over its competitors who may not have invested in cyber security, and be at risk from cyber attacks.

With around 40% of organisations feeling they don't have the time or resource to allocate to cyber defence, and another almost 50% not knowing what to check and/or lacking the required skills, it's imperative to get the right advice, specific to your organisation, from trusted resources.


The right combination of digital transformation and cyber security empowers organisations to commit to their future ambitions and aspirations. Driving new technological efficiencies, operational alignment and leveraging the potential of human-machine collaboration, has the potential to create a better world for business, communities and the planet.

By developing these capabilities, our clients will thrive in the coming cognitive era; the new digital age. We're here to support organisations in creating value for all stakeholders, helping them to innovate and differentiate from competitors, while becoming become more open, resilient and prosperous.

Get in touch to join us on our mission to make business better..

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Cyber Security
Digital Transformation
Co-Founder, Yopla
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