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CyberSecurity and Human Capital Management



As digital platforms and technology continue to evolve at a rapid pace, so do the threats of cyber attacks – highlighting the importance of strong cybersecurity strategies. This was the case with one of its clients, a global maritime company which suffered a network intrusion that affected its business operations. It engaged professional services firm KPMG to determine the root causes, impact, and extent of the breach.

KPMG leveraged its Cyber Threat Hunting solution, which was developed following years of responding to cyber attacks, to collect critical information from 1,000 servers, endpoints, and relevant network log records in a matter of days. This information was key to establishing a timeline and gathering evidence of the attacker’s tracks.

To contain the situation, the company’s network was disconnected from the Internet. KPMG then leveraged its worldwide network to coordinate recovery procedures between KPMG member firms overseas and the company’s IT teams. The complexity of the attack required a team that was technically competent about multiple domains – something KPMG possesses.

For responding swiftly with its award-winning Threat Hunting Tool, and leveraging integrated capabilities from a worldwide network that helped the company regain network connectivity between various global entities within two weeks, KPMG is conferred the CyberSecurity award.

“With ever-evolving cyber threats that constantly exploit the vulnerabilities of organisations, it’s really a matter of ‘when’ an attack would take place. So, when our client was faced with a serious cyber threat, it was very rewarding for us to have been able to investigate, contain and resolve the incident swiftly,” said Eddie Toh, Partner, Cyber, Advisory. “To have won this award is truly gratifying and an added bonus, as it is testament to the hard work and strong collaboration from both teams to overcome such a critical situation.”

This incident has reminded the company’s management about the importance of risk management when it comes to cybersecurity. Today, it continues to seek assistance and advice from KPMG, which it regards as its trusted advisor.

Playing it smart
Apart from the Cybersecurity award, KPMG, through its innovation arm Digital Village, has also garnered recognition for the renovation of its workspace. In 2018, Digital Village transformed 5,000 sq ft of the KPMG office into the KPMG Clubhouse: a smart space that connects and engages employees.

Recognising KPMG’s need for a higher employee retention rate, Digital Village had two objectives: to increase the level of employee engagement through technology and to ensure employees are acknowledged for their contributions. To achieve these, the Digital Village team surveyed 600 participants – from KPMG new hires to alumni across all business units – to gather insights about their workspace issues and to get feedback on how to better recognise employees for their contributions.

With the survey results, Digital Village brought to life the KPMG Clubhouse, which is dubbed “the future of workspace”. The collaborative space was designed for both work and play; it is equipped with technology – such as artificial intelligence-powered programme F.R.E.D (Friendly Relatable Engaging Device) that provides workplace updates to employees and PlayStation units for leisure time – that helps to meet employees’ needs within the office.

Since then, KPMG has seen an increase in visitors to the new workspace and rise in overall employee engagement. It has also recorded improvements in employee retention rate and its employees’ faith in its innovation capabilities through Digital Village. For this, KPMG is conferred the Human Capital Management award.