Cyber Security and the Race to NetZero

Cyber Security and Carbon? What’s the Connection?

With COP26 in Glasgow wrapped up, and the UK Government’s commitment to NetZero by 2030 pledged, many organisations have already declared that they will meet, and sometimes even exceed, that target.  This demonstrates that the focus is now on all organisations, and the people they employ, to do their bit to reduce their carbon footprints and move towards carbon neutral, and the ultimate NetZero 2030 target.

So, what’s the process for moving to Carbon Neutral?  As with any form of transformation, it starts with an assessment to see what the current baseline is, which enables plans to prioritise and implement carbon reducing measurements, actions and re-assessments along the way.  Put simply:  Measure – Record – Report – Reduce!

The above process relies on important data about organisations; how they operate, how employees carry out their lives, for example.  But what if that data were compromised?

The Importance of Cyber Security with Data

There is a vital importance around keeping that data safe, and the Cyber Security treatment for that data is no different to looking at Cyber Security for any other area of an organisation.

The main considerations are:

  • How will we keep our data safe during the carbon reduction programme?
  • Who will have access to our data, and how can the confidentiality and integrity of that data be protected?
  • How can we maintain availability of that data after implementing security measures?

Looking at the Impacts

Any impact assessment of data loss can revolve around the sustainability of an organisation and their direct employees, (what could they sustain as low risk / impact?).  Typically, we expect that many organisations will use 3rdparties to help with their Carbon Reduction process, which introduces another dimension to keeping data secure and asking, “What If a 3rd party became compromised?”.

Organisations may use their own developed systems or 3rd party systems; any of these systems may have a carbon footprint, so carbon-assessing these will also be important.  The data of how they are built, operated, and maintained will most likely be protected as Intellectual Property or be a necessity in the business.  If this data were to be compromised, this could allow competitors to gain an advantage or allow a cyber attacker to use that gained-knowledge to carry out a deeper data exfiltration attack.

The obvious impacts of data loss for any organisation are well known, and could result in loss of industry reputation and trust, with the added risk of a knock-on effect to revenue and share price.  Such a data breach also carries risk for employees and families – it could mean loss of earnings and reduction in credit rating, being unable to pay bills, even losing the home they live in!

This is why Cyber Security and the opportunity to keep the carbon reduction data safe, is paramount.

How Can We Make This Easy?

There are two main ways we can work with organisations:

  • Helping understand the impacts of Data Loss, and what to do end-to-end to keep the data safe – We understand Cyber Security and already help many organisations globally carry out their business knowing they have a trusted partner.
  • The Carbon Reduction platform – We host a global access platform for Carbon Reduction which has security baked into its evolution. With this platform, we provide calculations for carbon impact reduction and offset, plus report generation for PPN 06/21 standards for those involved in UK Public Sector recruitment and more generally ISO14001, Green House Gas Protocols and Theme 3 (Fighting Climate Change) in the Social Value Model.

I hope this post has highlighted, that as with every process, even Carbon Reduction Plans, Cyber Security has to remain paramount.  If you’d like to chat further please do drop me a line on LinkedIn, email, or reach out to us via our website.  There’s much to discuss….


Phil Hyde

Author Phil Hyde

Phil is one of the main drivers behind our Cyber Security capability. With wide experience helping global customers with their Network and Cyber Security, Phil brings the right balance of Business and Technology to the table.

About Accordant Solutions

At Accordant we help IT leaders optimise their IT strategy to improve performance and deliver substantial cost savings.