Security

UN report: 50% of countries have no cybersecurity strategy in place

Singapore and the US top the list of countries with the greatest commitment to cybersecurity. However, most other countries are lacking in their approach to cybercrime, hacking, and more.

Only 38% of countries have a published cybersecurity strategy, and just 12% are in the process of developing one, according to a new report from the United Nations (UN). The Global Cybersecurity Index 2017, created by the UN's International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and released Wednesday, urges more countries to consider national policies to combat cybercrime.

The index measured the commitment of the ITU's 193 member nations to cybersecurity. The top 10 most committed countries are:

1. Singapore

2. United States

3. Malaysia

4. Oman

5. Estonia

6. Mauritius

7. Australia

8 Georgia

9. France

10. Canada

Russia ranked No. 11, the report noted.

SEE: Information Security Certification Training Bundle (TechRepublic Academy)

This marks the second time such a report has been released, the ITU noted. The first report was published in 2014.

"At ITU, we are committed to making the Internet more secure, safer and trustworthy, for the benefit of all," said Houlin Zhao, ITU Secretary General, in a press release. "While the impact generated by cyber-attacks, such as those carried out as recently as 27 June 2017, may not be eliminated completely, prevention and mitigation measures to reduce the risks posed by cyber-related threats can and should always be put in place."

The report also shows improvement on the five pillars of the ITU Global Cybersecurity Agenda: Legal, technical, organizational, capacity building, and international cooperation. It found that there is room for improvement in cooperation at all levels, as well as in capacity building and organizational measures.

The cyberthreat landscape continues to grow, with massive attacks in 2017 such as Petya and WannaCry demonstrating how debilitating these incidents can be to businesses across industries.

"As the global community rapidly embraces ICTs as key enabler for social and economic development, it is vital that cybersecurity is made an integral and indivisible part of the digital transformation," said Brahima Sanou, director of the ITU's Telecommunication Development Bureau, in the press release. "We continue to encourage governments to consider national policies that take into account cybersecurity so that everyone can reap the benefits of the online world."

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

1. Half of countries do not have a formal cybersecurity strategy in place, according to a new report from the UN's International Telecommunication Union.

2. Singapore, the US, and Malaysia topped the list of nations that are most committed to cybersecurity, the report found.

3. As the cyberthreat landscape continues to grow, it's imperative for governments make cybersecurity a part of their national policies, the report stated.

Also see

About Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox