Page 25 - Deconstructing risk
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building performance, so we are on the cutting edge of all       technology becomes inbuilt to operations. Reinforcing this
the new building technologies. I see the opportunity in the      attitude, Akkaya says that “cyber risk is very much on the
applications of technology in our industry.”                     agenda of management”.

   As many of these technologies are still in the early stages      Because the industry is heavily decentralized, with a
of development, companies may see better results if they         large number of stakeholders, cyber threats are more
are implemented as part of a wider operational strategy.         difficult to manage.

   “With digital change, what it will be and how it will impact     “Numerous high-profile cyber breaches have shown
the industry is still being played out,” says one leading        us that, while your own IT infrastructure is well defended,
engineering, contracting and service provider. “We are still     privileged or unnecessary access granted to a third-party
trying to get our head around what it might look like and        or supplier presents malicious actors with an opportunity,”
to work out where the change is likely to be so we can get       Chapman explains. As a solution, Wallin suggests a
ahead of the game.” Although the development of new digital      collaborative approach, ensuring the participation of all
capabilities drives the business forward, security around        vulnerable parties to give higher protection across the
these initiatives is often addressed at a later stage, meaning   supply chain. Educating employees is an essential first step
any discussion of technology should include the possibility      in reducing cyber risks, particularly for the construction
of cyber risks.                                                  industry, where communicating effectively with a mobile
                                                                 workforce can be a challenge. As technological uses grow,
Cyber risks are a top priority                                   cyber-threat awareness and training should form part of
While the progress of automation and technologies                any cyber-security strategy, and should focus on helping
continues at pace, recent (and seemingly endless) cyber          employees identify, report and mitigate an attack effectively.
breaches are widespread. As the rapid development
continues and the rush to market by competitors races on,        Ten-year outlook
cyber-security is often neglected.                               “A trend over the next five to ten years will be how
                                                                 technology transcends from being back of the house to
   “It is clear that the level of understanding about cyber-     being in the field,” says Phillips. “How is it going to change
related risk is not as high as it needs to be,” says Willis      how we execute construction and the quality of the
Towers Watson’s Chapman. “The industry is vulnerable,            drawings that we receive from architects and designers?
not just in relation to the loss of data but also at the design  What happens if the technology fails, if the BIM file is
and technology stage, thanks to an increase in the use of        corrupt? It is interesting see how it will play out when we
technology – and the results could be catastrophic.”             have 3D printing and all other kinds of technology.”

   Taking the ninth spot for the industry overall, “increased       By 2020, technology will be mission-critical for the
security threat from cyber-attacks and data privacy              construction industry, and demand will grow for digital
breaches” is clearly top of mind for executives. Indeed,         innovations that can enhance the quality of design, production
most respondents cite cyber as a management priority.            and output. These developments are already in demand from
“We talk about cyber in the C-suites. It’s something             an industry that has historically lagged in digital progression.
that five years ago we didn’t think would happen to us,”         As dependence on technology grows, new threats will evolve,
says Phillips. “But somebody sees we are a $4 billion            and many respondents feel that technological advancements
company and they think that’s an opportunity. It’s a real        will bring new risks over the next ten years. Integrating
risk to our business. We are looking for different ways          technology in to the business will therefore require enhanced
to protect ourselves every day.” Phillips highlights the         cyber-security and a new approach to risk management.
changing nature of these risks and how they will evolve as

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