As organizations move into the digital age, they have come to depend on their I.T. infrastructure to operate. Modern businesses rely on more systems and create more data than they ever have in the past, and as the importance of I.T. platforms increase, so does their value, making them a target for cybercriminals.
Cyber Attacks Are Increasing, but Cybersecurity Skills Are Scarce
Cyber attacks, be they malware infections, unauthorized system intrusions, or even socially engineered campaigns targeting individuals, occur globally on a daily basis. As data is the currency, and infrastructure the backbone of the digital economy, threat actors seek to infiltrate online targets to steal data, cause damage, or execute a political agenda. The fact is your organization’s I.T. infrastructure is under constant attack, and you need to put measures in place to protect it.
The cybersecurity domain is vast and covers everything from infrastructure and application security to incident response and access management. As systems increase in complexity and more systems are integrated into an enterprise I.T. landscape, finding resources who have the skills and experience to implement measures to protect modern complex technology is a formidable task. With over 350,000 open cybersecurity positions in the U.S. alone, and an estimated predicted global shortfall of 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs by 2021, finding I.T. security resources is becoming ever more challenging for many organizations.
The Perfect Storm: Increased Complexity and a Shortage of Skills
The complexity of modern systems and the shortage of expert skills to secure them is placing organizations at risk. The fact is one security resource is not enough to cover the full expanse of cybersecurity needed to protect the system architectures in use by the average business in today’s digital landscape. A team of professionals, each with their area of specialty, is required to defend your business from the continuous onslaught of sophisticated cyber attacks.
If your organization has an internal I.T. department, it is not feasible to expect them to take on the specialized tasks demanded by modern cybersecurity in addition to their daily roles and responsibilities of maintenance, upgrades, and repairs. Internal I.T. teams are busy managing your line of business systems, keeping your infrastructure operational, and implementing projects. To beef up your cybersecurity you will need to hire additional staff, and as stated, one resource cannot cover the entire spectrum of cybersecurity skills you need to protect your I.T. environment.
Why Partnering Makes Sense
Partnering with an organization who has the relevant cybersecurity skills and industry experience is the most cost-effective, practical, and efficient way to protect your modern I.T. systems. A firm which specializes in cybersecurity has the expertise, access to resources, and economies of scale to help you fully secure your business.
Access to Specialized Skills
As mentioned, the complexity involved in managing distributed I.T. systems requires a wide range of specialized skills. With services running on-site and, in the cloud, and the mobility of tech-savvy I.T. users demanding access from anywhere using multiple devices, traditional I.T. security practices need to evolve. If we add the heightened threat environment organizations face on a daily basis, I.T. security needs to take priority and organizations require a set of relevant skills to maintain a secure environment.
Organizations can augment their cybersecurity skills by partnering with a security services provider who has both the resources and the necessary expertise. As the complexity of integrated environments increase, so does the need for skills which specialize in specific areas of the cybersecurity domain. As these service providers have the economies of scale, they can distribute the high cost of these scarce resources across their customer base.
Increased Operational Efficiencies, Reduced Costs, and Flexibility
Another reason to outsource your I.T. operational security requirements to a specialist service provider is increased efficiency. Although cybersecurity is an essential function, the amount of effort needed to secure systems does not always require a full-time commitment. For example, risk and vulnerability assessments occur on a periodical basis, patching and updating systems is usually performed monthly, incident response is an ad-hoc task, and conducting governance activities also take place cyclically. Organizations who employ the resources to perform these activities may find their teams underutilized, and because of the specialization needed, farming these activities off to an internal I.T. team may not be a viable option due to their current workload and the complexity involved in managing advanced cybersecurity activities.
Due to economies of scale, service providers can offer I.T.-related security at a much lower cost per task than an organization which employs internal security resources will end up paying. Furthermore, outsourcing this I.T. service also allows you to focus on your core business activities, and provides a flexible resourcing model enabling you to deploy the right skills to help meet a specific demand in the shortest possible time.
Where I.T. Security Outsourcing Makes the Most Sense
Although there are multiple benefits to partnering with a specialized security provider, there are a few I.T. security areas where the advantages are clear. These include security monitoring, incident response, and security testing.
Due to the constant barrage of malicious threats organizations face, you require a platform which provides continuous monitoring so that your team can proactively respond to any security incident or threat. Setting up a platform which offers this vigilance can be expensive and time-consuming, and you can gain greater efficiencies by subscribing to a service. Not only will you be able to monitor your environment at a reduced cost, but you will also have access to the specialized skills you need on demand.
Outsourcing regular security testing is another I.T. security task which can provide your business with added advantages. Although routine tests of an organization’s systems is a recommended industry practice, performing these tests in-house is an inefficient use of internal I.T. resources and does not provide a needed independent external view. Internal resources tend to develop a narrow perspective because they work in the environment every day. Specialist service providers, however, have an objective view, and access to newer technologies and techniques which they can utilize to discover vulnerabilities regular tests may miss.
Incident response is a specialized field of I.T. security which is only required after a security incident has occurred. As this is an ad-hoc requirement, a specialist organization who has the skills and expertise to render this service effectively is the best option. As with security testing, specialist incident responders who perform these post cyber attack assessments have the experience, tools and professional network to provide a service which surpasses anything an in-house I.T. team could offer.
Protect Your Business by Partnering with a Specialist
Your business relies on its I.T. systems, but the growing threat of cyber attacks exposes your business to an increasing amount of risk. The scarcity of skilled cybersecurity resources as well as the complexity involved in managing modern cloud-first, mobile enterprises means meeting this challenge in-house is expensive and inefficient. Partnering with a specialized I.T. security service provider not only offers you access to scarce skills, but also increases your operational efficiency, reduces your cost, and provides you with a flexible, on-demand resourcing model. Finally, specific I.T security areas such as security monitoring, security testing, and incident response lend themselves to outsourcing due to the specialization needed to perform these services effectively. Ultimately, partnering with a specialist is the best course of action when you are looking for ways to protect your business from the growing threat of cyber attacks.
To learn more about how your organization can protect itself from possible cyber attacks, contact JMARK.