The regret you feel after buying an overpriced sweater is probably less intense than when you overpay for a car. And both of these feelings are negligible compared to the regret you feel when you invest in the wrong cybersecurity strategy for your company.
Cyberattacks increased dramatically in 2021, leading many IT decision-makers and business leaders to invest more in their cyberdefenses. This year alone, worldwide security and risk management spending is expected to top $150 billion — a record high. As you decide how to adjust your cybersecurity strategy, it’s easy to feel confused or intimidated. Cyberattacks can damage both your company’s bottom line and its reputation, but if you pick a solution too quickly it could create more problems than it solves.
Creating a security strategy for your business doesn’t have to be stressful. Laying the groundwork upfront is a good way to evaluate your security needs and find the right solutions provider — and reduce the possibility of buyer’s remorse down the road.
Determine your security standing
In 2021, the average cost of a data breach reached $4.24 million, the highest amount in nearly two decades. But the cost of an attack can involve more than money — it may also result in the loss of consumer trust. Although there’s a lot at stake, evaluating your cybersecurity landscape and current security strategy can reduce some of the pressure.
Begin by evaluating your organization’s current security requirements. This boils down to understanding the root cause of your security issues, not just the symptoms. For example, if you’re suffering from high rates of credit card fraud, you can’t solve the problem without identifying how bad actors are infiltrating your systems in the first place. Once you’ve investigated which method is being used, you can more readily define your security needs and where to deploy them.
Next, look for internal solutions. What strategies, cyberdefenses, and vendors do you currently employ? Can you mitigate any security threats by using your existing mechanisms or infrastructure? These internal resources may make hiring a new vendor unnecessary. Identify your risks and capabilities from the start — it may save you time, resources, and outsourcing costs.
Find the right security solutions provider
Once you understand your security landscape, keep these five tips in mind to select a solutions provider that’s right for you.
- Evaluate the compatibility of your tech stack. When you buy a new piece of clothing, you probably think about how it’ll go with the items already in your closet. Similarly, when evaluating a cybersecurity provider, make sure the technology will play nice with your existing tech stack. If you’re looking for a solution that integrates directly with your network, be clear about this need before the sales process begins.
- Look for an experienced provider. Established cybersecurity providers with a diverse track record are typically your best bet. These vendors have enough experience to plan for potential security hurdles and can provide thoroughly documented processes for you to review.
- Ask providers how they will support you. Cybersecurity providers must be able to support you well beyond initial integration, both technically and logistically. How do they plan to support you after development? How quickly can they intervene if an issue arises? Get clarity about your expectations.
- Don’t sacrifice user experience. A seamless cyberdefense strategy provides a seamless experience for your users. Avoid any solution that downgrades user experience, which can ultimately lead to more security issues. A network firewall, for example, may lead to increased latency and user abandonments.
- Choose a provider that can deal with regulatory changes. Strong cybersecurity providers can efficiently adjust to regulatory or industry changes. For example, as government regulations shift toward prioritizing consumer privacy, it’s important for providers to communicate how they are using and storing consumer data. Also, ask providers how they plan to handle changes in data standards (for example, data localization requirements) and if that will impact their accuracy.
Lay the groundwork to avoid buyer’s remorse
If 2021’s increased cybersecurity attacks have you rethinking your security strategy, know that it’s not as overwhelming as it may seem. You can say goodbye to knee-jerk security decisions by getting clear about your unique security requirements and carefully evaluating solutions providers. And with the right approach you’ll never have to feel buyer’s remorse again.
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