Security and Risk Management Trends in 2021

Steps to help future-proof your business.

It seems that every day brings new threats to businesses. From increasingly opportunistic and sophisticated cybersecurity attacks to the increased risk attached to investing in new tech – businesses have it tough.

One way to find a security and risk management strategy that works is to look at what other businesses are doing. While nothing can quarantee an incident-free future, you can tape steps to help future-proof your business catching the wave early on.

Before you do anything – apply for a risk assessment

Risk assessments aren’t exactly new, but there is no better way to kick off your risk management strategy. Through a risk assessment, you will get a risk assessment matrix. This matrix will plot out the high and low-risk events that could befall your business.

Usually, high-risk events have a high chance of occurrence as well as a massive potential impact. Vice versa goes for low-risk events. However, a low-impact event can still be high-risk if its consequences are potentially catastrophic.

A risk assessment will make it easy to identify visualize everything you need to prepare for and to prioritize them.

Gartner, the leader in security and risk management, recently released a report on SRM trends for 2020. Here, we’ll provide their findings in bite-sized chunks.

1 – Data Security Governance Frameworks are Being Used to Prioritize Data Security Investments

Businesses realize that data security is not a one-dimensional issue that can only be solved by tech. It’s no longer good enough to simply buy any security product and try to adapt it to your business needs. Take as a sample, a whole new attack mechanism with the fake Adobe Flash Player update popups at its core is distributing an emerging Mac threat. Such virus is one of the common ways cybercriminals try to deposit additional harmful code onto a Mac and as a result it redirects the browser to rogue software installation websites.

A data-centric blueprint that relates the context the data is created and used in, as well as the regulations it is subject to, is needed to adequately address data security. Governance frameworks can help to formulate a way to guide future security technology investments.

2 – Risk Appetite Statements are Being Linked to Business Outcomes

Security and risk managers state that one of their biggest challenges is effectively communicating with business leaders. Writing risk appetite statements in the language of business helps to engage stakeholders by showing the effect of their risk policies on their bottom line. For example, by showing how taking on too much risk can harm their interests or being too risk-averse can result in missed opportunities.

3 – Interest in Implementing or Maturing Security Operations Centers (SOCs) with a Focus on Threat Detection and Response is Increasing

The growing complexity of cybersecurity attacks and the sophistication of tools to combat them has led to companies needing to outsource detection and response services. According to Gartner, the number of SOCs that will modernize with an integrated response, threat intelligence, and threat hunting capabilities will increase from 10% in 2015 to 50% by 2022.

4 – Hardware-based, Biometric, and Password-less Authentication are on the Rise

Passwords are easy targets for hackers using phishing, social engineering, credential stuffing, and malware like trojans. The push for a password-less future is finally gaining traction as hardware-based authentication methods and biometrics are becoming more available and accurate.

5 – SRMs are Increasingly Offering Premium Packages and Training Services

Demand is growing for cybersecurity professionals, driven by the complexity of attacks and security measures. Gartner predicts a shortage of 1.5 million cybersecurity professionals by 2021. SRMs are offering premium services and packages as another way for companies to offload their security needs by offering up dedicated security experts.

6 – Organizations are Investing in Cloud Security as the Mainstream Computing Platform

Pretty much the entire IT sector is shifting to the cloud, and security and risk management is no different. This is largely as a result of the shift towards centralized security and risk management as the need for expertise and personalized services grows. Organizations need to invest in governance tools like cloud access security brokers as well as people and talent to take responsibility and address risks.

7 – More and More Traditional Security Markets are Adopting the CARTA Approach

The continuous adaptive risk and trust assessment approach admits that there is no one best solution that offers perfect protection. Security needs need to constantly be reassessed and security measures need to have some form of built-in adaptability. This is particularly true in the fluid and ever-changing landscape of threats and protection measures. When taking the CARTA approach, you can benefit significantly from the insights offered by a risk assessment matrix as discussed above.

Businesses Can No Longer Afford to Hope for the Best When it Comes to Security

Global cybersecurity incidents, especially ransomware attacks like WannaCry, have shown the very real impact security vulnerabilities can have on businesses. It couldn’t come at a worse time as businesses are facing a cybersecurity skills shortage.

However, formalizing security and data handling measures through governance frameworks as well as offloading security concerns to centralized services can help to lighten the load. 

If you don’t know where to start, which is understandable, a risk assessment can point you in the right direction.

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