How Cyber security Threats Are Driving Mergers & Acquisitions Transactions
As Mergers and Acquisitions are constantly rising, law enforcement and accounting agencies are having more and more hard time dealing with Cyber Crime. Since this sector may not have enough experience with tracking down Cyber security threats, more investment will be needed in fighting against cyber attacks.
One of the most common forms of Cyber attacks on Mergers and Acquisitions transactions is through the file exchanges when sharing digital documents during the assessment of a client’s business risks. PDF’s, Excel and Word files are perfect means for embedding malicious code, which enable the attackers to steal information or shut down systems. Email attachments sent from unidentified sources can also be a common mean by which malware is transmitted into the system and exploited latter on for the same purposes.
When a Cyber Attack is performed on Mergers and Acquisitions around the timing of a proposed transaction, it not only exposes the parties involved to sophisticated malicious code but it has a real material impact on the transaction, by extracting financial information along with supplier and customer data, exposing confidential and sensitive information involved in these transactions.
The fact is that despite the use of Anti Virus software, Merging and Acquisitions transactions are not immune against Cyber security Threats. It is known that this software is only effective 45% of the time in protecting systems from malicious content (virus attacks) and the ‘sandboxing’ of documents – which suppose to analyse the quarantined files which entered despite the anti virus software – takes time and slows down critical Merger and Acquisition processes while disrupting workflows and causing delays in the performance of essential transactions.
Agencies dealing with M&A must be aware of the said above and must accept the fact that breaches can happen. They have to make sure that if data falls in unauthorized hands it will be unreadable and useless and to achieve this, investment in encryption has to be increased.