SIS Blog

Integrating Cybersecurity Risk and Process Management

by | Nov 18, 2021

As you continue to expand your digital footprint, your agency will be subjected to cybersecurity threats. Understanding the threats and how to prevent them is imperative to prepare for the future. In this article, we discuss the challenges of cybersecurity risk management and how to balance risk against performance. We will offer tactics to help approach these challenges and come up with solutions that can apply to anyone in your agency.

Why Is Risk Management Important for Cybersecurity?

Risk management is an essential way to combat the continuous cybersecurity threats your agency may experience. It’s important to implement a cybersecurity risk management strategy to help protect your agency. Here are some reasons why:

Mitigate cyber risks and prevent attacks

Implementing a cyber risk management strategy helps identify threats to an agency. Developing a risk treatment plan also helps to address risks and put defenses in place. This reduces the threats of cyber-attacks.

Reduce costs and protect revenue

Many attackers have a financial motive. It is important to minimize the risk of falling victim to an attack and mitigate the loss of revenue you could lose. Complying with certain regulations as part of the cyber risk strategy helps agencies avoid hefty fines for non-compliance.

Improve business reputation

Proving to your clients and customers that you take cybersecurity seriously gives your agency a competitive edge. Agencies can prioritize their customer’s or client’s data and gain their trust, resulting in loyalty and increased long-term business success.

RELATED: Centralizing Security Monitoring Services

Balancing Risk and Performance Management: The Challenges

Being an agency with any type of digital presence sets you up for cyber-attack risks. Cybersecurity leaders must balance these risks against their agency’s performance and compliance. Let’s discuss some of these challenges.

Risk and process management are deployed in opposition

Risk management is a process of locking out intruders. Performance management is about providing streamlined access. The two elements are diametric opposites. Creating a cohesive approach between the two is done by creating a strategy and implementing a service that successfully controls each aspect.

Focusing on risk management can be seen as focusing on performance, as preventing breaches can retain your agency’s overall performance and compliance.

Resources are spread too thin

Investing in a solution that will provide continued prevention of cybersecurity risks is important. If you spread your resources too thin, you leave yourself open to vulnerabilities. Assess your budget and spending and see where you can afford to take cuts and where more of an investment is needed.

Once you understand where the resources are being spent, you can allocate funds in a more strategic way. Identify which parts of your agency are not protected and invest in them. This will save you time and money in the long term.

RELATED: Integrating IT and Physical Security

Balancing Risk and Performance Management: The Strategy

Once challenges are identified, it’s important to strategize solutions. When balancing risk management and performance, pay attention to the details. The tactics below can be utilized by any security professional to dissolve these challenges.

Develop a metric-based strategy

Balancing risk and performance can be measured in numbers. It’s important to identify what metrics are important to your agency so they can be accurately measured. These can be resource-based metrics or based on performance.

Create a baseline of metrics from your agency’s current state, so you can look back and measure against them.

As you continue to measure these metrics, you can make changes to your approach and create a more streamlined agency. Focusing on the end goal of performance and compliance can be achieved with an understanding of where you once were and where you want to be.

Create streamlined compliance

Part of a cybersecurity attack is entering your systems through various methods. This can include hacking in through weak passwords or phishing emails. Creating a streamlined way for your team to comply with security protocols is a valuable way to implement risk management.

Using a two-factor authentication process in your agency is a great place to start. Internet services offer two-factor authentication, sometimes called 2FA. There are three recognized factors for authentication.

  1. Something you know (password)
  2. Something you have (hardware token or cell phone)
  3. Something you are (fingerprint)

Two-factor means the system is using two of these options.

You can also implement an organization-wide password management tool, such as LastPass. These tools keep your information private, secure, and hidden. They allow for an easier way to monitor compliance and balance risk.

RELATED: Five Benefits of Having an Integrated Security System

Implement centralized monitoring

Knowledge and insight are key as you target integrated risk and performance management. A security dashboard provides a centralized location from which to derive knowledge. Distributed systems are connected to the dashboard, delivering data in real-time. This, in turn, facilitates up-to-the-minute monitoring across the entire network.

Performance inefficiencies are swiftly identified. Your team can fix any issues while reaching your predetermined performance goals. Potential security vulnerabilities are also picked up. There is no need for expensive and disruptive overhauls of your systems. You can keep a watchful eye on both performance and risk management side-by-side. Small, incremental improvements help to achieve both objectives, with no downtime.

Foster ownership of cybersecurity risk management

Achieving both high performance and robust risk prevention requires widespread ownership. This begins at the top, as members of your upper management team identify this as a key priority. From here, it extends down through every level of the organization. Support this process with transparency and communication. This will help you bring every team member on board.

Team members at all levels need to be aware of their responsibilities. They also need to be clear on the importance of balancing risk management and performance improvements. Fostering this culture will make it easier to reach your goals.

Final Thoughts

As we continue to move towards a digital and data-driven world, protecting these assets is imperative. Government agencies continue to face cybersecurity risks, as hackers easily identify the holes in the system. Giving your agency the protection it needs while balancing the challenges presented with your performance is what will keep your agency safe. Reach out to our team to start improving performance and risk mitigation today.

KEEP READING: Top Cybersecurity Trends Shaping the Security Industry

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