Costs For Proper Cybersecurity in Denver
Many businesses face challenges when it comes to prioritizing their cybersecurity budget. Even the words “cybersecurity program” sound confusing, intimidating, and costly. After some careful research, business leaders will discover that it is very possible to protect their business from cyberattacks and vulnerabilities without spending an excessive amount of money.
The idea that only businesses in the financial industry or large conglomerates and Fortune 500 companies have to worry about budgeting for cybersecurity is a thing of the past. From law and accounting to education, healthcare, and startups, every business is a target. Threats and attacks are more frequent and damaging, costing businesses more than ever before.
At Initial.IT, we cannot overstress the importance of being proactive with cybersecurity. If you think planning for cybersecurity is expensive, just wait until you find out what the lack of cybersecurity costs. In the end, it’s more affordable and less stressful to plan for and mitigate a cyber attack, as opposed to dealing with the aftermath of an attack.
If you haven’t already done so, now is time to start researching in-depth cybersecurity strategies and defenses for your business. Once you understand what your business needs, you can implement a cybersecurity strategy that will balance both safety and affordability, whether you are starting over or evolving an existing program.
Why Is Cybersecurity Important?
Whether your business needs to protect private or personal information, stay compliant, remain productive, or just have peace of mind at night, there are many reasons why cybersecurity is important.
Even today’s smallest businesses rely on computer systems that house confidential and sensitive data. Many small business owners think they can handle a cyberattack, but nearly 50 percent of cyberattacks happen to small businesses, and over 60 percent of those small businesses go out of business within six months of falling victim to a cyberattack or security breach.
Even more, 66% of small businesses have experienced a cyberattack in the past 12 months. For the small businesses that experienced a cyberattack, one breach could take days, weeks, or months to contain due to the lack of the right solutions. When we talk about cybersecurity, setting defined goals and objectives is essential in determining the success of the processes and management tactics used to thwart threat actors.
With the right cybersecurity solutions, your business will place itself in a better position to detect and respond to a threat incident, or even prevent an attack before it happens. However, let’s not forget, in today’s frequently evolving threat landscape there is no such thing as 100% security. Once malicious actors carry out a successful cyberattack, it sends shockwaves across your entire organization.
When your confidential and sensitive data is jeopardized, the fallout can be extremely costly. If your clients’ or customers’ data is stolen, there is a strong chance that you will lose their business for good. Beyond these elements is the fact your business will lose money when it experiences downtime after a breach.
The Cost of a Cyber Attack
According to IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report, 2021 had the highest average cost in 17 years. Key findings from the report include:
- Compromised credentials were responsible for most breaches.
- Remote work due to the COVID-19 pandemic increased the cost of data breaches.
- Automation and security artificial intelligence (AI) provided the biggest cost mitigation, of up to $3.81 million less than organizations that did not have it.
- A zero-trust approach helped reduce cost.
Data and security breaches and the cybersecurity resources that make systems and networks less breachable have something in common: you have to pay for both. However, there is a difference. What’s the difference? The price for cybersecurity resources that prevent a breach can be calculated upfront, unlike the cost of recovering from a breach.
Since over-investing in resources can be a waste of money that negatively impacts your bottom line, it is understandable that business leaders have concerns about the cost of cybersecurity solutions. Does the cost of cyber security breaches justify the cost of cybersecurity solutions that harden IT systems and networks? Do cybersecurity solutions make an organization’s infrastructure harder for hackers to infiltrate? What is the cost of implementing cybersecurity solutions compared to the cost of being a victim of a cyberattack?
The specific costs of a cyberattack will depend on the sophistication of the attack and how well executed it was. If a Denver medical facility has millions of patient records and a local Denver accounting firm has thousands of records, the cost of a cybersecurity breach that results in data theft is likely to be on different scales. The cost of cybersecurity that both organizations need to prevent theft is likely to be noticeably disparate, too.
What Can Determine the Cost of Cybersecurity?
To determine the cybersecurity cost of a business hardening its systems and network against attacks, an IT services provider can assess your business’s existing needs. Here are a few factors to keep in mind when assessing the cost of the total cybersecurity solution your business requires:
- Security vulnerability assessments
- Endpoint protection assessments
- Network security assessments
- Data storage assessments
- Access management assessment
The above assessments can be used to examine fundamental elements of an IT infrastructure that hackers examine for weaknesses, which allow them to conduct a breach. The expense of resolving weaknesses and service implementation to prevent repetition account for the majority of the cost for cybersecurity.
What Is Your Cybersecurity Budget?
While every business has unique cybersecurity needs, there are some basic figures you can follow to create an effective plan for your business.
Some cybersecurity professionals suggest that businesses should spend a minimum of 10% of their IT budget on cybersecurity. However, many businesses spend 15-20% of their IT budget on cybersecurity. Businesses that do not have large information security departments will likely spend less money on cybersecurity than more tech-forward ventures. A financial institution that works extensively online may be more susceptible to threats and attacks by cybercriminals and should plan to spend more on cybersecurity costs than a small neighborhood retail store.
Defining specific goals and improvements can be vital as you build your cybersecurity budget. We encourage businesses to invest in a few key areas to help with cybersecurity challenges, including:
- Risk assessment, business continuity, and incident response
- Training employees so they can reduce the impact of cyberattacks, such as phishing and other social engineering attacks
- Continuous network scanning and testing
- Purchasing a cyber insurance policy
By having regular conversations about cybersecurity costs and cybersecurity spending, and planning your budget to serve as a guide for managing risks, you’re inching closer to being prepared when an attack happens.
If you’re unsure about the level of security you need for your business, now is a good time to consult a professional. Cybersecurity experts can examine your business’s unique needs and help you assess your current cybersecurity posture. Talk to the cybersecurity experts at Initial.IT to learn more.