Top 3 methods for boosting cybersecurity in 2014

December 16th 2013

As cybercrime becomes an increasingly challenging obstacle to overcome, business executives need to plan accordingly in 2014 and develop programs and strategies that will make embracing innovative strategies less worrisome. Because the threat landscape is much more comprehensive and complex today than it was several years ago, business leaders must take the time to recognize how their particular technologies, processes and programs may put their bottom line at risk.

Forward-thinking executives who choose to follow three key initiatives going into the new year will not need to be as worried about data protection challenges.

1. Get the board on board
Planning is a critical step for business leaders who are looking to improve cybersecurity initiatives. However, executives should not traverse this path alone, as doing so may cause unforeseen complications to arise down the line. Instead, managers should collaborate with C-level executives to acquire an overarching perspective on the risk landscape as a whole.

During the past several years, audit committees and other groups have taken a keen interest in cybersecurity due to the proliferation of disclosed breaches and threats. Rather than avoiding these conversations until a problem arises, business leaders should take the time to speak with C-level executives about which data protection plans are in place and how those initiatives aim to improve operations.

2. Embrace better monitoring tools
Information lies at the foundation of every successful IT initiative, not excluding security. When technical support teams have greater visibility into employee operations and activities, they will find it easier to identify and react to security incidents faster. This will be especially important as consumerization trends continue to influence employees to utilize advanced technologies in the workplace, even when those applications have not been approved by the IT department.

While sophisticated monitoring solutions enable enterprises to acquire unique insight into potentially risk behavior, executives must be sure they do not breach any privacy regulations, as this could introduce both financial and trust issues within the organization. Avoiding these problems may require businesses to educate the workforce and inform individuals that anomalous behavior will be monitored and acted upon. This may discourage employees from branching away from best practices, while simultaneously giving executives more information to work from.

3. Take stock of your cloud services
In the past, executives typically only needed to observe certain tasks if they wanted to reduce their digital footprint or improve information protection tactics. Today, more processes are embracing cloud technology than ever before, forcing IT departments to be vigilant. Virtually all employees are using at least some web-based platform.

The good news is that there are more data protection tools and consultants available to help an enterprise's quest to reduce risk and improve operations. By working with a trusted IT services provider, executives can find the solutions, services and insight they need to navigate an increasingly complex work environment without encountering significant challenges.