EY Ireland reveals new cybersecurity service to support SMEs

15 May 2023

From left: EY Ireland cybersecurity director Rebecca Hughes, head of cybersecurity Puneet Kukreja, and head of technology risk Carol Murphy. Image: EY Ireland

The company’s new operations centre will provide a range of cybersecurity services to companies, in order to reduce existing cost and resource barriers.

EY Ireland has launched a new service to help SMEs and other businesses defend against cybersecurity threats and reduce cost barriers.

The company said its new Managed Cyber Security Operations Centre offers a range of services to help businesses that have a lack of in-house skills and difficulties in estimating cybersecurity investment requirements.

EY Ireland’s new offering includes threat detection and response, incident response, vulnerability management, dark web monitoring and threat intelligence.

The company’s cybersecurity team has more than 100 staff across Dublin, Cork and Belfast to detect and respond to its client’s incidents.

The new service follows recent EY Ireland Tech Leaders and CFO Outlook surveys, which suggest cost and resource barriers are some of the key factors limiting the cybersecurity of companies.

EY Ireland’s head of cybersecurity and consulting partner Puneet Kukreja said having fully integrated “in-house cyber infrastructure” or fully managed outsourced security can be “resource heavy” for businesses and can leave them “on the starting blocks where their cybersecurity journey is concerned.”

The company said these cybersecurity barriers can become more pronounced for SMEs due to smaller budgets, making them more vulnerable to cyberattacks. A Typetec survey conducted at the end of 2022 claimed Irish SMEs plan to cut their cybersecurity budget by more than 50pc this year.

But recent surveys suggest cybersecurity is moving up the business agenda for various companies. In EY Ireland’s recent CFO Outlook survey, roughly 60pc of respondents said they had increased their investment in cybersecurity tools and technology over the past two years.

“The reality is that it is significantly more cost effective to protect against threats, than to react after the incident,” Kukreja said. “Treating cybersecurity as an expense rather than an investment is counter-productive, leaving businesses wide open to attack.

“Modern, cloud-based infrastructure and open AI means that a single stolen credential or compromised account can be used by bad actors to launch an attack.”

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Leigh Mc Gowran is a journalist with Silicon Republic