There’s a huge need for the cybersecurity industry to step up. Ample demand and the evolving nature of attacks has made the industry dynamic in recent years. For those that are up for the challenge, it’s a great opportunity to delve into a field that is always growing. However, no business is invulnerable to threats, and the industry needs to change in several critical ways to reach a point of maturity.
Don’t get me wrong, many businesses practice cybersecurity well. We’re seeing more and more organizations understand that ever-changing threats inherent in the industry, and that bodes well for progress. Still, a concerning amount of businesses continue to adopt a “fire and forget” approach—that is to say layering on defenses and calling it a day.
Every new system, every new update, and even every new solution creates vulnerabilities that attackers will try to exploit. The first step to building a better cybersecurity program is acknowledging that there will never be perfect countermeasures. The best a business can do is to identify key vulnerabilities unique to their organization and focus on protecting those while remaining vigilant about the possibility of an attack. Often, this means bringing in a third-party that can better monitor and upgrade systems on a business’s behalf.
Don’t Adopt Just To Adopt
While it’s true that every business—from large corporations to small businesses—should be concerned about cybersecurity, it doesn’t mean that the shotgun approach of adopting as much as possible and hoping for the best is smart.
Instead, businesses should look at cybersecurity strategically. There are a lot of great tools out there, but many require some expenditure of time and talent to be used effectively. Choosing tools should be a matter of weighing whether a team is capable of using them to monitor and detect potential threats. If they’re not being used correctly or as intended, they can often be a money sink that accomplishes very little.
Plenty of resources online give step-by-step plans for implementing cybersecurity in a business. While these articles are great starting points, they should not be the end-all-be-all of cybersecurity. More often, businesses should consider their level of risk, the amount of resources at their disposal, and potential attack surfaces when constructing a cybersecurity plan.
I’ve written a lot about security and compliance in the healthcare sphere because these organizations stand to lose more than most in an attack. There’s a lot to talk about. A smaller business will want to identify what is at risk in the event of an attack and what they could lose. Many times, it’s also about what these businesses can gain—the benefits available to them when older systems are upgraded.
In all likelihood, cybercriminals are not constantly probing the average business for weak points—but no business can afford to assume that they aren’t. Complacency is the enemy of good cybersecurity, and planning for the future is the best way to ensure that needs are being anticipated. In short, new measures should be proactive, not reactive—and it’s up to all businesses to find an ongoing solution that works for them.