The Three Main Pillars of Cybersecurity

A comprehensive security strategy is critical for any business in today’s digital age, but there are a few areas that need special attention. This article will detail the three main pillars of cybersecurity for your organization.

Protect Your Business

Smart security management comes with the knowledge that technology alone does not protect your business assets and sensitive data. A cyberattack comes from many directions, limiting a sophisticated firewall or software in securing any organization.

Protecting your business does not happen with a silver bullet solution. Instead, maintaining a robust and effective security posture requires a strategy built on the three pillars of cybersecurity: people, processes, and technology.

Guard the Weakest Link of Your Cyber Defenses

Some businesses build their defenses against cyber threats by purchasing superior technology. However, their IT department is not staffed with the right people to implement it properly.

Other businesses hire top security and IT talent without ensuring effective strategic processes are in place. Still, some of the brightest tech minds are laser-focused with security policies and processes in hand. Yet, the business does not have the technology necessary to mitigate cybersecurity risks.

Each of these scenarios is a reminder of what it takes to have reliable support. Otherwise, the information security of your business stands on a two-legged stool. The cybersecurity chain is as strong as the weakest link.

Therefore, you can manage security services in-house or look to managed security services providers. Either approach takes all three pillars to protect your business with a stable and balanced platform.

Strengthen Your Security Posture With People

According to research, human error contributes to a large percentage of data breach issues. As a result, securing the people who handle your assets and data integrity is an essential pillar of the overall cybersecurity strategy. There are several things that you can do to strengthen this defense against a successful cyber attack.

Some organizations have shifted to AI and automation to fulfill certain security duties. However, neither replaces the value of human talent. Close the talent gap where necessary and recruit candidates with experience, qualifications, and a natural aptitude for security awareness.

Involving HR on two fronts can support your hiring goals. First, make sure recruitment strategies prioritize which security functions are critical to your operations. This helps to maximize the value of who you decide to hire.

Consider adding a cybersecurity expert to your IT department to help identify roles that have the greatest impact on cyber risks. This person can monitor the cyberspace landscape to detect threats. An alternative is partnering with an MSSP already staffed with the expertise you need.

People create the culture of organizations. Therefore, focus on nurturing a security mindset throughout your business. Training and education can also assist with developing a security awareness culture.

Of course, vigilant employees who believe security matters are everyone’s role does a lot to strengthen this pillar.

Strengthen Your Security Posture With Processes

Your business needs to be on constant guard against cybercriminals. This involves anticipating or detecting vulnerabilities before damage occurs. Proactive information security processes play a significant role. Important elements of processes may include:

• Performing risk assessments to expose cyber risks and potential data breach issues
• Using security management systems
• Keeping software updated
• Installing security patches
• Requiring a two-factor log-in for employees and clients

Following proper procedures that are appropriate for your business is a must. While there are standard practices, some processes require a tailored approach. For example, you need procedures that define the roles, activities, and documentation necessary to mitigate cyber risks.

Keep in mind that this is not a one-and-done pillar. Cyber threats are constantly changing. This means that your security management processes must be updated as needed. In addition, managing vulnerabilities require a continual examination of assets that are most exposed to cyber attacks.

Ultimately, processes rely on properly training your workforce and having the right technology.

Strengthen Your Security Posture With Technology

Technology is a crucial part of data security. Investing in top-notch systems and applications protects sensitive customer information and other business assets. Doing so helps to reduce the risk of becoming the next cybercrime victim.

The proliferation of digital technologies means your strategy must factor in the increased risks that come with advances. Add remote workspaces to the mix, and this essential pillar now carries the weight of IT environments outside the office.

The use of personal devices to access business networks is another layer of concern. Endpoint connections over unsecured networks can increase your exposure to hackers.

Implementing identity and access management controls will ensure that only authorized in-house or remote users access business data and applications. For instance, each user receives a unique digital identity when logging into the network.

Another control is to authenticate each user with more than a simple username and password. Multi-factor authentication (MFA) provides an additional security layer. You can also implement security management control based on rules related to users’ roles within your business.

Proactive risk management also includes establishing controls for a strong security services defense. These defense controls are designed to:

• Prevent
• Detect
• Monitor

By starting with a comprehensive risk analysis, your information security team can understand risk levels for all data assets. This information guides you in identifying the most vulnerable targets. Periodic tests can expose more weaknesses and allow you to fix the issues proactively.

Some low-risk assets can be managed with patches or software upgrades. However, your IT team should monitor these automated processes to ensure that new vulnerabilities do not emerge.

Ways to Balance the Three Main Pillars of Cybersecurity

Technology is valuable to your business. It helps to increase employee productivity, keeps the business organized, measures financial health, and offers effective ways of communicating. However, technology can only operate as well as your workforce is trained to use it.

Furthermore, your workforce needs processes in place to ensure proper usage to stop or minimize a data breach. Balancing the three pillars of cybersecurity requires an information security plan to overcome challenges.

Cybersecurity Challenges for Large Corporations

Typically, large corporations have the budget and staff to maintain a security operations center. Deploying and maintaining multiple security solutions to address specific threats comes easily with the right amount of resources.

Yet, big security budgets also come with a set of challenges.

For starters, the corporation must consider mounting labor costs to maintain network systems and processes at a large scale. In addition, more users mean endless security alerts, which may cause “alert fatigue” among information technology security professionals with other priorities.

Failing to address this issue can lead to burnout and high turnover. Recruiting and hiring replacements will place more burden on the employees who remain. This scenario can leave the corporation exposed to a cyberattack.

Cybersecurity Challenges for Small and Medium-Sized Businesses

Small and medium-sized businesses do not have the luxury of a large cybersecurity budget. As a result, maintaining a SOC may be out of reach for most. Additionally, hiring and retaining highly skilled IT professionals may come at a cost to other departments and the bottom line.

Lacking in these areas causes a gap in cybersecurity skills. Without internal expertise, these businesses are considered soft targets for cybercrimes. One data breach can damage, or even shutter, the business.

Cybersecurity Challenges for All Organizations

In addition to specific challenges, there are cyber security challenges all organizations face, regardless of size or budget. An organization that lacks a poorly defined or incomplete strategy does not have cohesive processes in place.

Without the ability to investigate, detect and mitigate cyber threats, the organization cannot defend against cybercrimes. Technology cannot protect the organization where people and processes are out of balance.

Fortunately, your business is not without options to overcome cybersecurity challenges. A continually evolving threat landscape, paired with the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning, requires innovation in balancing the three pillars.

Cyber attackers are already using new technologies to find more ways to commit crimes. The goal for you and your IT team is to use these same technologies to build stronger defenses.

For instance, machine learning algorithms can be used to sift through massive data files to uncover anomalies. In addition, real-time discovery gives your business a heads-up to implement defensive strategies before a breach occurs.

Take a Strong Stand Against Cybercrime

Every organization, whether large, medium, or small, needs a strong data security defense against malicious cyber threats and attacks. Having the proper measures in place can protect your organization before, during, and after an incident.

As a leader in the security industry, Meriplex offers critical services to help. We partner with you to execute cybersecurity initiatives. Our process involves identifying core needs and prioritizing the measures that align with your objectives.

Securing your data and assets requires a total commitment from people, processes, and technology. Even if you have an internal IT and security team, we work with your employees to ensure the continuity of processes. Our goal is to deliver cost-effective managed services.

Contact us today for more information on how the three pillars work together for a secure online presence.