University of Twente Student Theses


On the escalation from Cyber Incidents to Cyber Crises

Colombo, Riccardo (2020) On the escalation from Cyber Incidents to Cyber Crises.

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Abstract:Cyber crises have increasingly become a reality that severely threatens the survival of contemporary businesses. Recognising when a cyber incident has the potential to become a cyber crisis constitutes an extremely sensitive and fundamental step as it embodies the shift from a tactical to a strategic level of response. The main objective of the present research is that of investigating what factors become of influence when considering the transition between cyber incident management and cyber crisis management in a corporate environment. We first conducted four semi-structured interviews with members of Northwave’s CERT; we then analysed the cyber crisis that Maastricht University underwent in December, 2019; and lastly, we conducted a semi-structured interview with a Northwave senior incident response coordinator. We concluded that although cyber crises appear to arise suddenly to client organisations, they instead materialise as the last manifestation of a sequence of cyber incidents. The vast majority of the client organisations have in fact been identified not to have a security monitoring solution in place. This prevents them from observing the transition that leads cyber incidents to escalate to cyber crises and, consequently, from treating them in order to avert the crisis.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:54 computer science
Programme:Computer Science MSc (60300)
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