It is widely believed that socioeconomic factors and cyberhealth across countries have a direct relationship, however, there has been limited effort to firmly establish this correlation. In spring 2017, CyberGreen Institute asked the Capstone team to determine the extent of this relationship.

The team has identified 36 socioeconomic factors, analyzed them through two statistical models and then compared analysis against the CyberGreen Index and Global Cybersecurity Index for 167 sample countries. One of the critical findings was that the data had to be normalized to be analyzed – the team used the total number of fixed broadband subscribers as the instrument to normalize the CyberGreen and Global Cybersecurity Index in order to truly reflect the country’s cyber health level and its commitment independent of its socioeconomic development.

The result shows that 36 socioeconomic indicators are inter-correlated and they are also highly correlated to the CyberGreen Index and Global Cybersecurity Index, which means highly socioeconomically developed countries tend to have higher cyber risk and higher commitment to address cybersecurity issues. Further, countries with higher general socioeconomic status are significantly cyber-healthier after adjusting the bias from the correlation between socioeconomic development and cyberhealth. Of note, this regression is more significant in low-income countries with higher levels of governance where such countries outperform their peer countries in terms of cyberhealth. The team further discovered that there are at least 16 different socioeconomic indicators that correlate to higher cyber risk within countries and that improvements in these areas has the potential to lessen cyber risk and improve cyber health.