Scenario-Driven Assessment of Cyber Risk Perception at the Security Executive Level

Simon Parkin (TU Delft), Kristen Kuhn, Siraj Ahmed Shaikh (Coventry University)

The motivation for corporate leadership to engage with cyber risks is increasingly clear. Stories can be seen of cyber incidents which have crippled large-scale businesses, potentially for extended periods of time and at significant cost. Our contribution here explores a much under-researched area — perceptions of cybersecurity and cyber risk at the highest levels of an organisation — with the aim of developing a structured, scenario-driven and repeatable exercise for executive decision makers. We attempt to understand why cyber risk perception is an important concept but equally a challenging one to grasp. We address this by demonstrating an approach to risk articulation, in terms of systematically constructed scenarios, and assess whether this resonates with decision-makers. As part of this, we also attempt to assess cyber-risk decision-makers for their perception of wider business risks and stakeholders.