A comprehensive threat picture for enterprises

As a part of the security-political task Critical Infrastructure Protection

Economic aspects and risk analysis (part 2)

Josef H. Bogensperger


In the first part of the essay the author gives a survey on the topic of Critical Infrastructure Protection and compares it with the approaches in the relevant Austrian Standard. Then he attempts at demonstrating the impacts of great loss events on the relevant economic indicators of an enterprise. With considerations about risk analysis he completes the first part. The threat picture shown here summarizes the various threats for enterprises in lucid categories, illustrates the particular threat categories with example incidents, thus representing the basis for a comprehensive analysis of the threatened added value prerequisites. Only together with a threat picture, which must be seen comprehensively on an abstract level, possible incidents can be derivated on a full scale. Thus one can guarantee that all relevant incidents can be processed in the subsequent risk analysis. Basically, among other things, a military threat is the result of the relation between the military potential at hand and the political intentions to use this military potential. At the moment there are no aggressive political intentions in Europe; there is, however, a massive amount of armament available. Until the military integration is completed, the danger of re-nationalization of the European security policy will represent a remaining military risk. It is essential to interconnect possibilities if one wants to be especially effective. In this context, two further aspects must be taken into account. National law enforcement agencies and military forces (and other actors as well) can generate both hard and soft power. The key point is that soft power resulting from the quality of purity, competence, legitimateness and reliance can reinforce the hard power of military action forces additionally. Strategies capable of combining hard and soft power successfully represent the expression of an intelligent exertion of power. A hybrid power projection implies the ability of governmental and non-governmental conflict actors to give effect to the various means of power on the strategic, operational and tactical level, in different contiguities of action (political, military, diplomatic, economic, medial, cultural, etc.), by a systematic, phase-structured or permanent interoperation in a multidimensional and multi-perspective combat scenario. Hybrid power projection becomes efficient because of a so far not existing spectrum of vulnerabilities of globally networked states, societies and economies as well as the available high-power infrastructures. This essay describes the various threat pictures for enterprises of today, pointing out that protecting the critical infrastructures of societies is absolutely essential.