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The fourth annual Allianz Risk Barometer survey was conducted among both global businesses and risk consultants, underwriters, senior managers and claims experts within both AGCS and local Allianz entities during October and November 2014, with a focus on the corporate insurance sector for both large industrial and mid-sized companies.

The report is well worth downloading and studying. They break the report into regional and industry perceived risks and they vary quite a bit by area of the world and industry. For example, in the top five risks you see “talent shortage/aging workforce” in the construction and engineering industry but that wasn’t even noted in the other industries in the report. Or by region “fire/explosion” the #1 risk in China and Russia but in the US and Germany, the #1 risk was cyber security.

The report noted the rise of cyber security issues as a growing threat (it was #8 in 2014) and is also the top emerging risk for the next five years. Yet although awareness increases, it is still the top risk underestimated by business, with budget constraints cited as one of the main reasons why companies are not more prepared for the disruption caused. According to the Risk Barometer, loss to reputation or brand value is now the main cause of economic loss for businesses in the event of a cyber incident, even higher than costs resulting from the interruption.

There were a record 516 respondents from a total of 47 countries. As multiple answers for up to two industries were possible 709 answers were delivered.

Participants were asked to name industries about which they are particularly knowledgeable and then name up to three risks they believe to be of most importance.