Combating cyber attack threat a ‘priority’ for travel firms

Combating cyber attacks has been highlighted as a priority for travel businesses.

Cybercrime has cost the global economy $1 trillion and could reach $90 trillion by 2030, travel industry leaders attending the  World Travel & Tourism Council annual summit in Manila heard.

A report compiled with Mircosoft found that 72% SMEs in the UK, the US, and Europe have suffered at least one cyber attack.

With SMEs representing 80% of all travel and tourism businesses, mitigating cyber risk must remain a priority for the sector, the WTTC urged.

President and chief executive Julia Simpson said: “Technology and digitalisation play a key role in making the whole travel experience more seamless, from booking a holiday, to checking in for a flight or embarking on a cruise.

“But the impact of cyberattacks carries enormous financial, reputational and regulatory risk.”

This report revealed four key issues to address to improve cyber protection and enhance resilience: securing identity data, securing business operations, understanding the impact of Covid-19 and managing global legislation.

Educating and training all staff, expanding risk security beyond the physical workplace, employing a zero-trust approach to cyber security, and transparency, among others, have been recommended by industry experts as good practices.

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