IT has reached a pivotal point, now recognizing that a strong security posture isn’t only dependent on the science of what’s effective but also an artistic touch that can paint tactics on the canvas of strategy so each business’s cybersecurity master plan is colored with nuanced shades to meet the specific needs of that business.
One reason for this broader strategy shift is the complexity of IT environments, often including both on-premises and cloud infrastructure and solutions. Veeam’s survey of 3,000 IT pros and decision makers worldwide for its 2021 Data Protection Report found that 91 percent increased their reliance on the cloud during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic. Businesses adopted Desktop as a Service (DaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), numerous industry-specific Software as a Service (SaaS) applications, and cloud services such as Microsoft Office 365, Google Workspace, Salesforce, and Dropbox to make collaboration and customer engagement easier as employees worked away from the office.
Moreover, at the same time businesses’ IT footprint expanded, cyberattacks grew more sophisticated. Analysts predict that hackers and organized cybercrime are using more artificial intelligence (AI) to predict corporate executives’ activities and use that information to target attacks (i.e., phishing or spear-phishing) to be more effective.
All considered, protecting your network and your data is becoming exponentially more challenging.
You Need More than Technology
New solutions and cloud services give teams the flexibility to work anywhere – a definite advantage since early 2020 – and leverage solutions and services to automate and streamline processes. It also introduces risks to cybersecurity. Data that was once confined to on-premises infrastructure and employee workstations is now traveling over the internet, on public clouds, and outside corporate networks.
The traditional focus has been on the science of cybersecurity, deploying firewalls, endpoint protection, and even more advanced technology that uses artificial intelligence (AI) or behavioral analysis to identify potentially malicious activity.
Make no mistake, security technologies are vital. But alone, reducing a cybersecurity discussion to a strict scientific approach doesn’t provide you with everything you need to protect your data and your business. In addition to the right technology, you also need to consider an artistic approach.
What is the Art of Cybersecurity?
The team at Trend Micro, one of our affiliate partners, took a deep dive into this topic in their white paper, The Art of Cybersecurity. From Trend Micro’s perspective as a leading security solutions provider, businesses need to enhance a traditional approach to cybersecurity with three elements:
A strong security posture requires staying informed of threats and vulnerabilities and doing your best to stay one step ahead of bad actors. One way to do this is to patch known vulnerabilities, which are related to the majority of cyberattacks. Unfortunately, Ponemon Institute research found that 57 percent of organizations struggle with identifying high-risk threats and patching them quickly.
You or your managed security solutions provider can also leverage intelligence from threat research. One source of intel, for example, is the Zero Day Initiative, which rewards security researchers for privately disclosing the vulnerabilities they discover so that the good guys, not the bad actors, have that information.
Also, it’s vital to have visibility into your network, prioritize alerts, be prepared with an appropriate response if (more likely, when) a security event occurs.
There is also an art to assessing risk and deploying solutions that specifically address them. That may mean implementing new security technology, but sometimes it means simplifying your security stack to a single solution for more effective management. It can also mean considering security from your employee’s perspective to ensure it doesn’t add to their workloads – and tempt them to work around security measures or turn them off.
The best approach to security for your business won’t look like anyone else’s. Invest time into determining the specific threats to your organization and focusing your efforts on mitigating them.
The resources or partners or resources you choose should have skills and expertise in cybersecurity, but they should also be creative thinkers – artists. Build a team committed to the mission of helping your business maximize ROI from the cloud solutions and advanced technology you implement while decreasing risks of cyberattacks and data breaches.
Create a Security Masterpiece
Skilled resources, an intelligent strategy, and the right technology will produce the most effective cybersecurity. Remember, however, that the perfect security posture in May might not be what you need in October. White hat hackers will discover new vulnerabilities, new ransomware and malware variants will make their debut, and cloud solutions and services could change. The threat landscape is always evolving, and you will find your masterpiece needs additional brush strokes as you go.
You can achieve the flexibility you need to respond to changes by combining an approach that respects both the science and the art of cybersecurity. This approach will give you the freedom to leverage technology for innovation, more efficient processes, and greater competitiveness while mitigating risks.
Ready to talk to an expert skilled in the art of cybersecurity? Contact Virtual Systems.