Tip of the Week: Getting the Most Out of Your Cybersecurity Budget
Despite hearing about a constant stream of cyberattacks over the past few years—most of which cause millions of dollars of damage to businesses—it might still be difficult for you to justify spending a lot of money on your business’ cybersecurity plans. There is a finite amount of capital to go around and many times CIOs and network administrators will be rebuffed by management when asking for money to spend on cybersecurity. Today, we thought we’d discuss three ways that you can spend on cybersecurity initiatives and not feel like you are throwing your money down the drain.
Today, many organizations have gone as far as to hire a CISO, or chief information security officer to handle budgetary issues when it comes to the protection of a business’ digital resources and information systems. Even though they operate under the CIO, they typically have budgetary discretion to spend cybersecurity money as they see fit. If your business doesn’t have a defined CISO, these four tips should help you out.
Identifying Your Organization's Digital Strengths and Weaknesses
As with most IT-related initiatives, in order to intelligently spend your organizational cybersecurity capital, you need to assess your current standing and how they relate to putting together reliability in your IT. You’ll want to start by identifying the assets that need to be protected. You may be surprised at what you find after an assessment. Most businesses, especially in the small business sector will find that they come in woefully short in:
- Business continuity plans - Businesses tend to put in minimal effort into their contingency plans and will find that if something were to happen to their business’ information systems that they would be facing major downtime events and other disastrous situations.
- Phishing and cybersecurity training - The threat landscape is littered with businesses that haven’t prioritized training for their staff. Today, phishing attacks are the number one source of malware attacks and other cyberattacks.
- Cybersecurity insurance - There are many cyber insurance plans out there that can help protect a business against data loss and cyberattacks.
Regardless of your business’ situation, a full security assessment can give you the answers you are looking for to help drive a robust cybersecurity strategy.
Aligning Your Security to Support Your Business
To understand how they get a return on your security investment, decision makers need to see potential issues in practical means. This often means breaking it down into dollars and cents. Security spending will always be justified if decision makers see how inherent risks can ultimately affect ongoing continuity and business processes in general.
You need to make them understand that security efforts have to go further than just maintaining regulatory compliance. You will want to make them understand that your security budget is used for risk mitigation, sure, but also can benefit productivity and boost revenue. One way you can accomplish this is to automate certain security processes. Not only will this remove the repetitive and mundane tasks thrust on your IT team, it will also provide the data needed to justify the increased security spending as it will lay out how spending on security can save an incredible amount of capital when compared to dealing with cyberattacks and other security issues.
Onboard Solid Contributors
Finally, everyone knows that new hires are some of the costliest line items in a new budget, and to justify the need for them on the cybersecurity side, you also need to cultivate a strategy that requires investment to be made. That may just be having extra eyes on your IT infrastructure, or bringing on people that can help train your employees on the best practices that will keep your business’ data and infrastructure secure. Investing in solid contributors that quickly understand the role they play in your organizational security and don’t need to have their hand held while navigating your business’ computing environment can bring significant dividends.
Network security is always going to be a touch and go issue, especially for people who need to release funds to your IT team. Getting them the tools and resources they need to mitigate the negative impact to your business takes work but is possible. If you would like to have a conversation with one of our security professionals about how to best spend your security dollars, give ISC a call today at 502.292.5097.
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