Preparing Your Cybersecurity Budget for the New Year
It is going to be a new year soon and with that will come new threats that will affect cybersecurity. Most executives know that at least some of their budget should be allocated to cybersecurity. It is a must for any organization because even with security measures, cyber attacks still cause an average of six trillion dollars annually in damage to businesses and organizations. When formulating your budget for 2023, part of that budget should be cybersecurity. Tekscape is a nationally recognized managed service provider of information technology, and we specialize in helping businesses find solutions to their most difficult cybersecurity problems. Read on to learn about preparing your cybersecurity budget for the new year.
Take inventory of your current cybersecurity infrastructure.
When taking inventory of your current cybersecurity infrastructure, start with your hardware first. If your laptops, servers, switches, or other hardware is aging out, prioritize what should be replaced and keep the rest backlogged for the next year. Any aging machine is more likely to cause more issues than newer machines. Doing this inventory will also help you decide if the costs of having your servers in a cloud environment off premises are better than having them in house. Consult with your managed service provider on upgrading your equipment as well as moving to a cloud server. Off premises cloud servers often allow businesses to save money because there is no need the extra space for the in-house server and maintenance is performed off-premises as opposed to in house where you will want to hire someone to maintain it.
Evaluate the effectiveness of your current cybersecurity.
Planning and evaluating are essential to creating an effective cybersecurity strategy. The most effective way to do this is to assess the risks associated with your business’s situation at any given time. Each type of business will face different types of cybersecurity risks. For example, a business that focuses heavily on eCommerce is more likely to be targeted by hackers looking to exfiltrate data or cause operational disruption.
This means the business will need to assess the effectiveness of its cybersecurity efforts to combat that specific problem in the past. If the organization has a more extensive digital footprint such as in financial or government industries, the security efforts may have to focus more on combatting phishing attacks that breach data.
Conduct a cybersecurity risk assessment.
When starting a cybersecurity risk assessment, always check what the emerging threats in cybersecurity are. You should also make sure you are aware of your compliance and contractual cybersecurity requirements for your customers, insurers, and partners.
These risk assessments should not only be done when you prepare your cybersecurity budget for the new year but also regularly. Regular risk assessments will show improvement over time which will justify the budget for cybersecurity that you are asking for. Regular assessments will also limit the number of surprises when it comes to costs and risks.
Always include staff cybersecurity awareness training in your budget preparation.
Since a growing number of cybersecurity attacks come from internal errors, investing in thorough cybersecurity awareness training for staff is essential for gaining support for the budget outside of the information technology department. Specific roles in your organization should receive focused education that matches their level of risk and responsibility. Awareness training also reduces the chance of a major cyber incident occurring and will allow you to focus on the budget of improving cybersecurity hygiene rather than recovering from incidents. This training will also help you to avoid leaning on third parties and insurance companies which can also save money and allow the budget to be allocated to other areas that need it.
Implement the cost of zero trust architecture in your budget.
Zero trust architecture is a critical item that should always be at the top of your cybersecurity budget. Zero trust architecture decreases the likelihood of an incident but increases the ability of an organization to improve its overall security posture. It has been especially valuable to businesses that have an ongoing remote work protocol.
Any company can benefit from adding zero trust architecture to their budget, but it is especially useful for those who need high-level flexibility while remaining secure and compliant. According to Microsoft, an ideal zero trust environment includes the following.
• Verification of a user’s identity through authentication
• Validating device health via a device management system
• Applying the principle of least privilege
• Verifying the health of used services
Also, according to NIST, a business can establish zero trust architecture in the following ways.
• By focusing on user access privileges and context-based identity verification
• By splitting the network into separate segments protected with different policies and access rules
• By using software-defined perimeter approaches
• Include data backup and disaster recovery in your cybersecurity budget.
Business downtime can have huge cost implications for any type of business. Including disaster recovery as a service or DRaaS allows businesses to swiftly move over to their backup system in case of disaster related downtime. Disaster recovery as a service involves keeping a copy of all critical systems and data that is moved over to quickly resume operations after a disaster strikes. DRaaS not only covers backup from major cyber attacks but also natural disasters, and power outages. This service is usually handled by a third party such as a managed service provider so it may also help to save costs because you do not need the staff to do the backups and maintenance.
After you are finished preparing your cybersecurity budget for the new year, consider Tekscape as your solutions provider for cybersecurity. We offer managed cybersecurity for several different industries including manufacturing, finance, education, and the legal industry. Tekscape takes the pressure off so that you can worry about running your business and not about cyber threats. We also offer other services including support, networking, collaboration, and virtual desktop infrastructure. We wish you a very happy and safe new year!