Cybersecurity is the kingpin of today’s IT success as organizations spend 5 To 6% of their total IT budget specifically on it. Reputation is the core value that all businesses chase, and in today’s world where news spreads faster than imagination, cyber-attacks can cost everything. Cyber concerns and the enterprise budget allocated for combating it are both exploding. So, justifying this budget and also maximizing the cybersecurity ROI is the priority.
The average financial pinch that any data breach costs is around $3.86 million. The figures testify organizations’ need to level-up their security strategies and understand that a healthy cyber-budget is worth the investment. Considering today’s barrage of security threats, expanding attack surfaces, savvier cybercriminals – it is incredibly challenging to extract cybersecurity ROI optimization.
More money and bloating investments don’t necessarily translate into better cyber protection. So, below listed are the critical steps for maximizing cybersecurity ROI:
Focus on Data Analysis
Data fuels success, but only when analyzed and managed efficiently. Applying a blunt-force approach results in unnecessary overspending, without any guarantee of crucial data getting over-protected. Exploring the value of data, backed by a stout risk tolerance mechanism should navigate all cybersecurity investments. In fact, data classification and discovery should define the relevancy and effectiveness of each bit spent on security.
Analyzing the Risk Landscape
The cyber risk landscape is continually expanding with new unimaginable challenges shaking up businesses every day. The ones who remain mired in the age-old legacy approaches to cybersecurity need to analyze and rethink their priorities continuously. Relying and over-investing on essential tools like malware protection, firewalls, and data-loss prevention (DLP) is redundant now. The bigger ROI is usually associated with the security-intelligence systems, machine learning, behavioural analytics, automation and orchestration. Leaders need to rethink priorities and better comprehend what derives enhanced protection and ROI.
Embed Stringent Control Measures
New technological disruptions like cloud, IoT, and AI are changing the security landscape’s ground rules. Only once the enterprise has analyzed the market environment and introduced reliable metrics, can it align its cyber-security framework with the appropriate risk levels. Another important aspect before defining the security strategy is to compare with competitors and map the overall industry’s scenario. Key focus areas encompass data governance, authentication, roles, and encryption, coupled with robust controls that indicate “prevention and remediation.” This framework needs to include behavioural-analytics tools that pick out on unusual users, network behaviour, and machine learning to orchestrate better to automate the other tools and controls.
Leveraging AI to Track Threats
Leveraging an AI-driven approach reduces the complexity of the entire process. It controls the number of fake alerts, augmenting security professionals’ task, provides in-depth insights into how existing tools function, and identifies all underlying security gaps in the business’s existing architecture. Also, it eradicates the need for long-drawn training programs while acquiring advanced security tools to maximize the business’s cybersecurity return on investment.
The Basics Shouldn’t be Neglected
To maximize security with minimal costs, businesses should focus on staple blocking and tackling mechanisms, which quite a few organizations neglect. Basics like patching and configuration management are the most constantly discussed terms in the context of cybersecurity. Still, many organizations fall short at it. Or multifactor authentication which has great potential to ratchet up protection sadly remains underused by many firms. Enterprises need to balance out their cybersecurity infrastructure with a mix of basics and advanced technologies to remain successful and maximize ROI.
Training to Build Up
Cybersecurity awareness should flow like blood into each employee regardless of their department or hierarchy. For this, training plays a pre-dominantly crucial role to assure safe data-handling practices and avoid social-engineering techniques. Organizations should readily eschew funds in favor of insider threat management or other training programs. Making the workforce aware of probable threats is the best way to keep the criminals at bay and save thousands of dollars or reputational damage.
Map the True Business Benefits
Although it is not possible to always measure direct ROI for cybersecurity, businesses need to remember that it is beyond the tangible benefits. Cybersecurity is a futuristic investment towards improvising organizational quality with enriched operational efficiency. Areas such as apps security are even more critical as customers or partners rely on them for regular decision making. In case of an app crash or an infected system, the company’s brand image gets tarnished. A massive amount of sales are lost, followed by possible lawsuits or fines, making the situation even more terrible. Best-practice businesses need to acknowledge that security ultimately offers a competitive advantage and a brand differentiator.
Implementing the Zero Trust Model
Zero Trust is vital to restrict access to the entire network by segmenting it based on user permissions and isolating applications, authentication or user verification. With Zero Trust policy enforcement, cyber protection becomes simplified across all devices, applications, users, and data, regardless of the connection point. This user-centric approach seamlessly verifies all authorized entities mandatorily, mitigating all scope of error. The ‘trust, but verify’ mindset is essential for all organizations today to be secure and optimize returns.
Discovering Active Threats
Network infections can infiltrate data infrastructure environments in comparatively less protected scenarios. This leaves enterprises with the questionable network activity that has complete chances to be victimized by a significant data breach. It is essential to go beyond automated threat detection to identify the network irregularities proactively. Employing a well-strategized and managed threat identification model with vital response service, enables firms to cost-effectively leverage all cybersecurity advantages that any in-house threat hunting team proactively delivers.
Developing an Elaborate Action Plan
Enterprises should develop a stringent action plan to realistically and cost-effectively lead the business forward on the path to cybersecurity maturity. And, in the process of progress, maintaining the required balance between operational effectiveness and productivity is essential to push the ROI.
The ultimate goal for any business is to optimize investments using a combination of processes, people, and technology. The metrics to define ROI success, coupled with a rigid framework of data governance and classification, are vital to ensuring business security. While there is actually no way to bulletproof the systems, it is possible to guarantee that a firm’s risk posture is aligned with the level of tolerance. The appropriate protection controls, methods, and technologies form the backbone in this case. And cyber resilience is indeed the best possible security protection approach the businesses can adopt to maximize ROI.