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1030 FOL KPMG

Ivan Alcoforado, left, senior manager of cyber security with KPMG Canada in Calgary, and Jeff Thomas, a partner with KPMG in Calgary, say digital security is one of the company’s area of expertise.
Wil Andruschak © Postmedia Network Inc.

Joel Schlesinger © Postmedia Network Inc.

The way of doing business has changed, and so have the risks that come with it.

More and more Calgary companies are thriving in our digitized world. But as they leverage e-commerce, cloud computing and other innovations, their vulnerability to cyber attacks grows.

Thankfully, KPMG in Canada is no stranger to these threats.

For the third consecutive time, KPMG has been named as a leader among global cyber security consulting providers by Forrester Research, making them a popular choice for companies, including many firms here in Calgary.

“Cyber security is a core competency of ours,” says Jeff Thomas, a partner with KPMG in Calgary, specializing in risk management.

Any organization caretaking client data, or with automated operations, should have cyber security at the forefront of its strategic plan, he says.

KPMG is helping many companies in this respect.

“We really focus on assisting organizations in understanding what can go wrong and how impactful a cyber attack can be,” Thomas says.

“Then we help develop a plan to manage that risk.”

Another reason clients turn to KPMG is that its cyber-risk management services are comprehensive. Its experienced professionals are industry thought leaders, for example, on how to protect organizations’ IT infrastructure against increasingly common ransomware attacks.

“It’s not just about building a plan, identifying the risks and having a response strategy to an attack,” says Ivan Alcoforado, senior manager of cyber security with KPMG in Calgary. “It’s also about running regular simulations.”

Having a well-executed response plan often is the difference between an organization surviving an attack and being dealt a fatal blow.

“In one instance, a company handles an attack with a clear emergency plan in place, and it flies below the radar, while in another, a company fails to plan well; customer confidence is shattered and executives lose their jobs,” Alcoforado says.

Given recent high-profile cases involving companies that have failed to plan well, Calgary businesses and other organizations increasingly grasp what’s at stake.

And that’s why many local organizations are turning to KPMG.

“Calgary is a big energy town, we work with a lot of energy companies, which have corporate networks with a lot of data to protect,” Thomas says.

But KPMG cyber-security services are in high demand across many industries in the city — from life sciences and finance to agri-business and logistics.

“Our goal is to establish key relationships with clients before something bad happens,” Alcoforado says. “That way, if a cyber attack happens, they can call and say, ‘Ivan, we’ve been hit,’ and we help them get back up and running with as little disruption as possible.”

This story was created by Content Works, Postmedia’s commercial content division, on behalf of Calgary Economic Development.

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