5 Steps to Implementing a Cybersecurity Strategy
Often, companies end up waiting for moments of crisis to then take some emergency action to contain hacker attacks on their systems, resuming operations normally as soon as the problem is resolved.
The downside of this type of tactic is that it does not represent an effective and comprehensive solution, as it fails to fix existing vulnerabilities in the business and increases the chances of even more severe attacks in the future.
Studies show that an organization faces, on average, 106 cyberattacks per year and that out of every three attacks one manages to cross the protection barriers, violating the security of the companies’ data.
Many times, cybersecurity strategies put in place cannot always protect all information, leading to possible loss of data and significant values, which, however, does not justify their absence, since constant cyberattacks are expected nowadays.
So how can we reshape the attack-related approach and put effective cybersecurity actions in place? Below, we list five measures that can help professionals in this task:
1. Understand the concept of business ecosystem
Seen as an innovation in business management models, the concept of business ecosystem considers a business as a part of an interconnected network that crosses a variety of organizations, and not as an isolated actor.
When thinking about the purchasing department and its role in the supply chain, this interconnection becomes stronger and the links more interdependent. It is essential to understand this complex system when implementing cybersecurity strategies.
With such interconnection, a vulnerable link, that is, a company with little or no digital security, can endanger all other elements of the ecosystem or supply chain and negatively impact operations or even disrupt them.
2. Define cyber leaders
Digital leaders (cyber leaders) must have a mastery of risk management and the ability to speak both technical and business language in order to communicate with senior leadership about economic risks and competitive opportunities.
They must be strategic thinkers, able to influence internal and external stakeholders while building a secure business ecosystem. Ideally, each department should have a digital leader who is fully aware of the area’s processes. The main objectives of this professional are:
- leverage cybersecurity at the board level;
- explain why cybersecurity is critical to business development;
- ensure that digitization and business strategies address cyber risks and include security measures.
As digitization is still quite revolutionary for many industries — and cybersecurity is still considered “technical” — sometimes it takes a lot of effort to persuade senior management about these measures, so a spokesperson who knows the department’s process as well as the technical part and has a holistic view of the business, you will be more successful in implementing security actions.
3. Define cybersecurity success
This measure concerns the restructuring that the company must seek in relation to cybersecurity, defining the objectives and goals related to cybersecurity strategies. These definitions will indicate what can be considered a successful cybersecurity action for that particular organization.
4. Make safety a collective goal
Protecting information is not just about implementing technical processes, but also about raising awareness among all the people in the organization, so that customer information, operating strategies and operational knowledge are treated in accordance with corporate norms and policies.
Employees play a very important role in discovering and inhibiting attacks, as they represent the organization’s first defense. Everyone must be trained and aware of the practices necessary to protect their operations and how to defend the company against attacks.
Thus, entire teams will be prepared to identify hacker activities and articulate quick responses to stop them, returning to normal activities once the crisis is contained. Likewise, this process requires the commitment of all areas of the organization.
For this, working and spreading the culture of a management focused on mitigating risks and a cyber-resilience mentality in the company is fundamental for efficient protection of information, as well as to meet the expectations of executives.
5. Test your company’s security capability
Conducting tests that seek to simulate hacker attacks is essential for the organization to make a real assessment of its defense capabilities against external threats. This makes it possible to measure how effective cybersecurity strategies are and how quick the responses to these attacks are.
Cybersecurity: a strategic factor
Working to prevent attacks and fraud is a strategic factor for any organization that wants to avoid losses and gain profitability, in today’s connected, digital and complex world, since the losses associated with these crimes can reach extremely high values, both from a financial and an intellectual point of view.
There is no longer any way to avoid or deny the growing cyber risks that companies are running all the time, it is necessary to restructure the organizational culture and processes to protect operations and prepare effective responses to highly complex criminal attacks.
Being aware of the company’s cybersecurity efficiency is a matter that deserves the full attention not only of executives, but also of the entire team of employees. This topic must necessarily be among the priority agendas of organizations, being part of training, protocols, and guidelines related to all practices and activities of all departments.
How is information security done in your department? Is this agenda discussed in training and meetings? Do the chosen vendors have information security protocols? During the home office, was any guidance given to the team on how to protect themselves from hackers?
Go to the comment section and tell us your impressions on the topic to enrich our discussion.