Why Should You Invest in an Information Security Program?
Imagine the following, your business is doing well and things are spinning along at a perfect pace. You read about another information security threat making the news, but you have remained untouched by any major mishaps. You may wonder “Why to invest in a security program?”. “Is my organization really at risk?”
If you have found yourself asking the questions above or if and you’re uncertain if your organization needs an information security program, read this list of red flags to see whether it’s time to create an information security plan.
You Aren’t Sure If You’re at Risk
If you need to ask if your organization is at risk for a security breach, then it’s likely that you are. Understanding the level of risk your organization has accepted is a basic element of a comprehensive information security program.
Your Company Isn’t All on the Same Page
One of the reasons organizations invest in an information security program is to identify threats so that a mitigating strategy can be created. The identification of threats allows an organization’s IT department to meet with executive leadership to create a mitigating strategy. Without this concrete information, the IT branch may lose the backing of executive leadership. This denies the IT department the resources needed to protect the organization’s data. By convincing executive leadership to invest in an information security program, you can obtain the approval and resources to make your data more secure.
An Information Security is Viewed as Only an IT Issue
In some organizations, security is viewed as solely a technical concern, so it becomes only the responsibility of the IT department. In reality, an information security issues touch every process, person, and technology within any organization. As a result shouldn’t just be an IT department concern but the entire organization’s concern.
Your Information Security Program is Disconnected from the Budgeting Process
When a comprehensive information security program is implemented, your team needs to plan their security budget carefully. Appropriately funding your information security program can ensure there is enough funding to put the proper systems in place to identify and handle threats. Many organizations associate security as a cost center because of this information security programs are often underfunded. If your information security program is having issues with funding, one possibility may be that leadership doesn’t see the value in investing in a proper information security program.
Your Information Security Program is All Policy
Another sign that an organization needs to revamp its information security program is when the “program” consists of only policy. Policies are documented rules that an organization self-imposed. If an organization has established some information security policies but never actively enforces those policies then the policy is useless.
…Or There Is No Policy
Even worse than having a policy that’s ignored is having no policy at all. If your organization has no policies around information security and data protection, then investing in an information security program will assist you in developing those policies.
You Aren’t Leading by Example
A definite red flag that an information security program needs revamping is when enforcement of information security policies doesn’t apply to management. Employees notice when the people lecturing them on certain aspects of security aren’t practicing what they preach. This sends a contradicting message and makes the information security policies seem unimportant.
There Is No Clear Plan in Place for a Security Breach
When a security incident occurs, an organization with a well-run information security program will have a plan that automatically kicks into action. Time is of the essence when potential data loss is a possibility. If your organization does not have a plan ready for a security incident then you need an information security program.
You Don’t Prioritize Protection of Customer Data
Saying you protect your customers’ information is one thing while taking steps to protect it is something entirely different. If your customer data protection has no substance then you need an information security program to back up the talk with real action.
You Set Up Your Information Security Program and Simply Forgot About It
Perhaps you’ve already invested in an information security program…several years ago. If you’ve set up security policy and controls but have never gone back to revisit and reassess them, it’s time to make another commitment to your information security program. An information security program is a continuous process that needs to match an ever-changing threat landscape. In this ever-changing environment, you owe this kind of diligence to your company, your employees, and your clients.
If you’re unsure of how to build and maintain a comprehensive information security program for your organization, contact CISOSHARE. Our team has the experience and knowledge to help get you started.
CISOSHARE’s President and CEO
Mike Gentile has been helping organizations build Information Security Programs for more than 20 years. He has written multiple recognized books on the subject, provided hundreds of presentations, and built many Security Programs in both internal and external consulting roles