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Five Smart Security Tips for Companies Undergoing Digital Transformation

Digital transformation has dramatically changed business. From the ubiquity of emerging technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence to the change in computing, the shift has become a benchmark for companies to gain a competitive advantage.

More importantly, using data, whether to drive down costs or optimize operations, is now of paramount importance to most companies—even those outside the tech industry. This rapidly evolving initiative is helping businesses to transform, however, significantly increases a company’s vulnerability to cyberattacks. In fact, a report from EY’s 2019 CEO Imperative Study revealed that CEOs see cybersecurity as the biggest threat to the global economy.

This is why cybersecurity has become an important part of today’s business planning initiatives. Filling these gaps should be an integral part of digitizing your company. So, here are five tips to help you do just that:

Onboard and engage cybersecurity experts

Managing risk is a priority throughout digital transformation. Engaging experts, whether it’s consulting firms or onboarding cybersecurity analysts, should be part of your developmental strategy.

If you don’t have one already, consider hiring a Chief Information Security Officer (CISO). While it’s now a legal standard in many regions and industries, companies continue to underestimate the impact of cybersecurity on their business. CISOs are vital in creating a healthy cyber culture and keeping the company proactive in closing gaps and vulnerabilities in their IT infrastructure.

Raise workforce awareness

Employees remain the highest cybersecurity threat to your organization. Phishing attacks and malware are the most common forms of attack, often made successful through the exploitation of an unaware workforce. To reduce this risk, you need to implement a holistic, people-centered approach to cybersecurity.

Regular training programs and drills, as well as stringent protocols, should also be part of your digital transformation. Many of the security tools and conventions being used need to be strictly adhered to – and educated employees are pivotal to ensuring this is the case long-term.

Replace outdated systems

Integrating emerging technologies into your  business model should be done in phases. However, as Krebs on Security’s assessment of the recent Marriott data breach discusses, legacy systems can compromise more secure systems when they’re linked together. In this example, the malicious software exploited old cash registers in newly acquired Starwood hotels to siphon invaluable data from its supposedly secure systems.

Legacy systems are not only more risky to maintain —they are also much more expensive to protect from potential cybercrimes. An article by Marcus on cybersecurity protection notes how vital it is to keep technology up-to-date, as not only does this significantly decrease your vulnerabilities, it also streamlines how your system is patched and secured.

Carry out regular cybersecurity audits

Cyber risk is measured through a comparison of your company’s processes against an established standard in security. It involves reviews on system integration, security patch assessments, and audits on all the protocols currently in place. A feature on the missing layer in cybersecurity by Dark Reading points out how a cyber risk audit can bridge the gap and find much-needed solutions.

While doing a one-time audit may be sufficient for the operational side of your business, measuring risk in cybersecurity should be done regularly. Audits also help in identifying underutilized measures that are not deployed or used properly. On top of that, audits ensure compliance with the dynamic regulatory environment —shielding you from legal risks in the process.

Prioritize endpoint security

With the 5G rollout comes virtually endless possibilities for the IoT. Companies are expected to adopt and integrate a flurry of sensors and devices to optimize data gathering and improve efficiency across networks. However, this also adds to the numerous ports and devices in the system—presenting more vulnerabilities. Your endpoint security should be integrated with cybersecurity strategies that prioritize capabilities such as compliance reporting, endpoint hardening, and attack detection and response.

cybersecurityWhile every organization approaches cybersecurity differently, there are a handful of things leading technology professionals are doing to address unsafe user behavior. We’ve compiled a number of the industry’s most effective cybersecurity tips and use cases in our recent AOTMP® Research Analyst Perspective – check out this report today to start protecting your data!