Getting more bang for your security buck: 3 keys

Security budgets are tricky to manage: Chances are you’re spending more than you’d like, and that doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting all you need from it. 

Regardless of your budget, however, you’ll want to be sure the money is spent well. If your company suffers a breach, it won’t matter to the top brass or customers how much money was allocated for security. All that will matter is that whatever was spent didn’t protect the organization.

Here are three tips for optimizing your budget from IBM’s SecurityIntelligence.

1. Focus on operations

In the past, many companies went with a patchwork system of many different security services. The idea was that each security measure would fill in gaps left by others.

This left IT stuck trying to fill in the gaps and integrate various systems together. That often created vulnerable connections which could be attacked. A better bet is to leave integration to providers and focus on operations in house.

2. Map threat surface area

To protect your systems, customers and users, it’s helpful to know what exactly is at stake. By mapping out the threat to each key stakeholder, you can narrow down how these groups are at risk and then go about putting defensive measures in place to protect them.

3. Focus on knowledge

Security tools are well and good. But you need to focus on more than just products to protect your organization.

Other areas you’ll need to focus on:

  • Training users. These are your first line of defense against attacks and can be your biggest strength or weakness in protecting systems. Make sure they’re aware of specific threats that are in the news as well as evergreen security tactics (such as anti-phishing measures).
  • Updating staff. Communication within the IT staff is a must. Sharing security info among the team should be common, whether it’s updating co-workers on solved help desk tickets, cross-training other staff members or just having brief team meetings to update on the status of common issues.
  • Convincing the top brass. Getting support from the top isn’t limited to funding new security projects. You’ll also want their backing for security training and to keep them in the loop on the latest threats and security issues.

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