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Smart cities report

The energy sector is the critical infrastructure system in ‘smart cities’ most susceptible to cyberattacks (71pc), followed by communications (70pc) and financial services (64pc), it’s claimed. Energy and communications also are among the top three critical infrastructure sectors that respondents anticipate can benefit the most from smart cities, besides transportation.

Research by the IT association ISACA suggests that malware-ransomware and denial of service are the two most concerning types of smart infrastructure attacks. Respondents noted that cities’ smart infrastructure is most likely to be targeted by nation-states (67pc) and hacktivists (63pc). Only 15pc of respondents consider cities to be most equipped to contend with smart infrastructure cyber attacks, compared to 55pc who think the national government would be better suited to deal with the threats.

Robert E Stroud, CGEIT, CRISC, past ISACA board chair and chief product officer at XebiaLabs, said: “Before our cities can be identified as being ‘smart,’ we must first and foremost transfer this smart attitude to the way we approach and govern the roll-out of new technology and systems. Our urban centers have many potentially attractive targets for those with ill intent, so it is critical that cities make the needed investments in well-trained security professionals and in modernizing their information and technology infrastructure.”

Most respondents – around 2,000 global respondents were polled in February and March – consider new tools and techniques such as smart grids and artificial intelligence for cybersecurity to be important, but less than half of respondents consider those likely to be implemented in the next five years.

The need for more effective communication with residents living in a developing smart city also is apparent, as three-quarters of respondents indicate that municipal governments have not educated residents well about the benefits of living in smart cities. Tapping into smart technology to modernise parking, ID systems and other city services can create efficiencies and lessen congestion.

Visit www.isaca.org/smart-cities-survey. See also blog by Gary Hayslip, Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) at Webroot: on the ISACA website.


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