Why You End Up Securing Nothing When You Try to Protect Everything

11 Jul 2017 | Derek Lok, Solutions Consulting Director, Asia Pacific

Think you can create an impenetrable cybersecurity fortress? Think again.

Building an impregnable fortress of cybersecurity seems like a good idea. But in today’s context, this traditional approach is slowly becoming outdated. Buying “bigger and better” security products might seem intuitive, but it might leave security gaps, downtime, and negative impacts to revenue and brand reputation.

At the rate at which threats are evolving, cyberattacks have become the sixth biggest risk to doing business in the region according to the World Economic Forum. About 35 percent of companies in Asia Pacific also fail to go through with digital transformation for fear of losing sensitive data.

Blurring environments

The battle lines in cybersecurity are blurring today. As digital transformation ramps up in the region, digital capabilities bring technology and data closer to customers. Mobile, wireless, and IoT technologies are unlocking various possibilities for customer experience, but also causing complications when it comes to tracking the flow of data and protecting it at the various points it is located.

Even in the backend, the rise of hybrid cloud environments make it challenging to distinguish where one network ends, and another begins. The mixture of public and private clouds make it confusing—as well as difficult—to implement effective security measures. As digital transformation changes the way we do business, cybersecurity measures also have to evolve.

Lack of personnel

Talent is also scarce when it comes to filling up cybersecurity positions. Earlier this year, a recent ICT study by National Trades Union Congress’ (NTUC) Future Jobs, Skills and Training Unit also found that cybersecurity is one of the top sought-after jobs in the sector.

With a lack of “soldiers” to build up or man the cybersecurity fortress, it can be challenging to keep track of evolving threats and respond to an attack. In fact, 85 percent of Singaporean CIOs believe that attacks will increase due to a lack of cybersecurity personnel.

Bloated security spending

Acquiring the shiniest toys in cybersecurity technology will not be effective if an organization does not know how to wield them effectively. It will lead to an inefficient use of security budgets. Without an adequate, in-depth understanding of a network, organizations are susceptible to spending blindly.

For instance, an organization might over-invest in technologies like data loss prevention and packet captures without knowing that it has overlooked basic patching. While it perceives that it has deployed new technology to fight today’s threats, it has ignored a fundamental issue which still leaves it vulnerable to attacks.

What organizations need to understand is that it’s not about spending more on cybersecurity. It is about spending smarter. They can conduct a business impact analysis and review their networks and business goals. By prioritizing and identifying security gaps, they will have a clearer view of what security technologies they truly need for maximum impact. This will bring them closer to a proactive cybersecurity approach that will drive faster, secure digital transformation.

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