A hint of the climate that lies ahead

It’s one of the basic tenets of best practice corporate governance – and in what could become a global test case, a number of shareholders of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia don’t believe their board is particularly first-rate in this regard.

I’m referring, of course, to the board’s duty to act with care and diligence and to take into account all known facts that might impact the longer term outcome of a strategic decision they make.

And the case in question deals with a group of shareholders who have – in what is a world-first – commenced proceedings against the bank on the grounds that it failed to adequately disclose the risks climate change poses to the business in its 2016 annual report.
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Director’s head in the sand approach to cyber threats

When Governance Matters Associate Guy Hamilton came across an article in a recent issue of Harvard Business Review (HBR) that suggested a laxity from directors when dealing with cyber threats, he was astonished and decided to delve a little deeper…only to come up alarmed. Here, he shares his thoughts on this most ominous of governance issues

After reading this disturbing report, reflecting on the many malware attacks on businesses and digesting the IT professionals’ view that simply updating systems with the latest patches from the  software suppliers would have prevented most infections, I couldn’t but shake my head in disbelief.

If it was that simple, why was it not done?

So I decided to catch up for a coffee with an IT support engineer friend to chat about cyber infections and found his analogy most illuminating. It’s a bit like walking through a house with many rooms and doors, he told me. Locked doors can’t be entered, open ones can – and the same goes for data files. If they’re properly compartmentalised with good access controls, a virus’ ability to spread is greatly limited. Continue reading