Why cyber security is important

Cyber security can sometimes feel like a buzzword, with everyone constantly saying it’s important. But for some, it’s not clear why. Is it really just a thing of the moment or is there truly a need to look at your cyber security? You’ll find out in this short article.

GDPR is a driver in cyber security

GDPR (General Data Protection Regulations) has the potential to disrupt organisations across the world. Although it specifically references EU data, the regulations still stand for any companies outside of the EU if they offer services or products to anybody in the EU.

As part of GDPR, organisations that meet these requirements will only have 72 hours to report a breach. That’s just three days. A FireEye report from 2016 revealed that, on average worldwide, it takes 146 days to detect a breach. However, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa took 469 days to do so. And according to IT Governance, it takes 206 days for companies in the US to become aware of a breach.

If companies are found to have taken longer than three days to report a data breach, they face a substantial fine – €20 million or 4% of their annual global turnover.

The costs associated with data breaches

And the potential GDPR fine isn’t the only cost associated with a data breach… Research from IBM suggests that the global average cost of a data breach is $3.86 million. And whilst that will vary from company to company, one thing will remain the same – whatever the figure may be, it’ll be more costly than hiring a cyber security department.

There’s a lot that contributes to the cost of a data breach, including loss of productivity, loss of data, potential lawsuits, time spent containing and eliminating the breach, and more.

Lack of cyber security damages your reputation

53% of breaches aren’t discovered internally. More often than not, they’re discovered by law enforcement. Having an internal cyber security team increases your chances of detecting, containing, and eliminating any breaches. They’ll also be able to put steps in place that make breaches less likely to occur.

You’ll likely have heard of many of the brands that have recently been found to have had data breaches. Here are just a few:

  • Adidas
  • Under Armour
  • Timehop
  • MyFitnessPal
  • Macy’s
  • Best Buy
  • Whole Foods

These are large companies with great reputations. But even they can’t deny that the reputation that makes them as successful as they are takes a knock with each data breach. Whether it’s because it took so long to discover it, or because it affected millions of customers, a lack of cyber security damages your reputation. The question to ask is whether you think your company can a) afford to be fined extensive amounts of money and b) risk damaging your reputation.

Protect your organisation

It doesn’t matter what industry you operate in or where you’re based – without a cyber security plan in place, you’re risking a lot. Whether you’re operating in the banking and finance sector, retail, engineering, education, supply chain, or more, you could experience a data breach. Especially if you don’t have anything in place to protect yourself.

And protecting yourself doesn’t have to mean investing hundreds of thousands in a cyber security team (although we would definitely recommend having one!). The first thing you should do is roll out some employee training, so you can be confident they know the best practices. This can include the basics such as making sure they don’t use USBs if they don’t know where they’ve come from or trust who’s used it beforehand. Raising awareness of trusting links in emails and how to spot phishing emails is also another key thing that many forget over time.

Growing your cyber security team

As we’ve discussed, a cyber security team has the potential to save you a significant amount of money. It’s an investment – one that was once considered a ‘nice to have’ and is gradually becoming more of a necessity.

We can work with you to put together a plan that works for you, in a time frame that works for you. Maybe you want to hire the entire team at the same time. Maybe you want to stagger it. Whatever your needs, we can help.

To find out more, contact your local team today – just click here.

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