When a business is considering operational philosophies, they need to think about cybersecurity as a foundation to their organization. It can no longer be seen as only a function of the IT department or an optional business expenditure.
Cybersecurity touches every aspect of a company, and should be driven by everyone from the CEO to the new hire. The driving force is one that everyone can get behind: to protect company data, client data, and employee data.
The CFO and the CIO need to be focused on risk and compliance as well as the company revenue. The two go hand in hand because a cyber attack will affect the company financially in a multitude of ways, including down time, encrypted files, ransomware, fines, loss of business or even the possibility of going out of business.
It's not only a matter of focusing on cybersecurity, but taking the right approach. If a company is considering only tools or products when making security investment choices, they are asking the wrong questions.
The goal of a cybersecurity strategy is to reduce risks, which takes a combination of experts, processes, and tools. Expert guidance is needed to address security concepts, policies and procedures, safeguards, training, best practices, and incorporating the best tools for the organization. This is the holistic approach executives should be implementing with their cybersecurity strategy.
A most effective approach to cybersecurity is to align the security strategy with the needs of the business in a way that's measurable and quantifiable. Then the CISO or vCISO will be able to prove through in-depth reporting how the security investment is a wise priority for the entire company.
Some companies may need guidance with their cybersecurity approach or look to hire a security expert. A virtual or fractional CISO (vCISO) is an approach that many companies are now pursuing, citing the benefits of having the expertise of a full team and significant cost savings. When hiring a vCISO, characteristics of successful engagements include security credentials, number of team members that will be involved in the project, program structure and flexibility, security clearances, experience in cybersecurity, product tool neutrality, insurance, and references.
If you would like to discuss your company's cybersecurity strategy for 2021 or learn more about IGI's vCISO program, please feel free to reach out to the IGI team or contact me, Kimberly Moore, at firstname.lastname@example.org.