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Why cybersecurity should never be sacrificed to reach other business goals

As technology advances and businesses adopt digital transformation through cloud adoption, machine learning, and automation, cybersecurity is becoming an important business function.

Yet despite the obvious concerns about cyber-attacks, many businesses do not consider it to be a top priority and sacrifice investment in cybersecurity to reach other business goals.

Cybersecurity risks are not limited to your information technology assets, they are also a very big risk to your entire organisation. This can lead to serious consequences for businesses if a cyber event occurs, in the form of loss of business reputation, heavy financial penalties, and even shutting your business down entirely.

Cost versus security

Revenue is the lifeblood of business and a company that is operating without a clear business plan for revenue will not last long. However, being only focused on short-term profits at the expense of investing in other critical business operations can lead to long-term problems.

Many business executives question the cost versus benefits of cybersecurity, as they do with many business innovations. They might feel they need to direct funds more towards resources for employees, or are grappling with the shift to a remote workforce. There can be too many actions demanding attention, and cybersecurity falls down the bottom of the list. Or it can simply be there are not enough funds to do more than utilise antivirus software and hope for the best.

This is where it is useful to weigh up the cost of investing in enterprise security against the cost of neglecting this important function and then becoming a victim of a ransomware attack or data breach.

Australia spent approximately $5.6 billion on cybersecurity in 2020 and self-reported losses from cybercrime totalled more than $33 billion. As you can see, the damage of cyber-attacks far outweighs the cost of cybersecurity, and this trend will continue.

What happens when cybersecurity isn’t a priority?

Business managers may have any number of reasons for not considering cybersecurity as a top priority. Usually day-to-day business operations get in the way of prioritising security and put it on the to-do list. Or it may be they believe it costs too much, too many employee resources are required, or it holds back innovation.

The problem with neglecting cybersecurity is, at some point, you become a target of malicious actors.

Ways cybercriminals can impact your business include:

Large organisations have more robust security strategies in place, so often it is smaller businesses that bear the brunt of malicious attacks. A cyber-attack can result in:

The average cost of a security threat for a business in Australia is around $276,000 per attack. For many businesses that amount of money is not something they can easily recover from.

What’s the solution to prioritise cybersecurity?

One of the silver linings of the global pandemic has been to shift cybersecurity to the top of mind for many Australian enterprises. Businesses have been forced to make sudden shifts to remote working models and adoption of new technologies, such as cloud computing. This has pushed cybersecurity risk to front of mind as a business risk, rather than just an IT problem, which allows for more focus on prioritising security solutions.

Even as things eventually swing back to something more normal in a post-pandemic future, many of these business operations will remain, which opens up many opportunities for cybercrime. In fact, almost 70% of Australian businesses plan to invest even more in cybersecurity services and solutions in the next few years.

Investment in the right type of security solutions is as important as having protection for your business. A cybersecurity strategy implemented after a full risk analysis will find out what are the main vulnerabilities in your business IT environment, to ensure you get the full value out of your security investment.

This is when the advice and support from managed security service providers can prove invaluable. Talk to the security specialists at Steadfast Solutions to discover how their holistic and robust cybersecurity solutions can keep your business safe and secure against the latest cyberthreats.