How Much Should You Pay For Cybersecurity in Denver?
With cases of cyber-attacks continually on the rise, it is not a matter of if your company will be attacked, but when. According to a study by Accenture, over the past five years, security breaches have increased by 65%. These attacks have had devastating effects on companies such as:
- Disruption of business
- A damaged reputation leading to the loss of clients decreased sales, and diminishing profits
- As a result of the breach, fines and fees have been imposed on companies
It is far less expensive to prevent a cyber-attack than it is to recover from one. Fundera reported that SMBs spend, on average, $960,000 US dollars to restore normalcy in business after an attack. These attacks may take months or even years to recover from. With hackers coming up with sophisticated ways to get access to your data, companies are being forced to implement systems to prevent these attacks.
This situation presents the vital question, how much should a company spend on security? The simple answer is it depends. Various factors such as the regulatory requirements it is supposed to fulfill, the sort of business the company is in, the type of data the company handles, the probability that the company is a target, and the complexity of its IT infrastructure will direct a company on its security spending.
The question one should ask is what aspects should a company consider when determining the amount of money it should spend on security? This process of deciding this is vital in safeguarding the company’s systems and data.
How Can You Determine Your Company’s Security Expenditure?
A survey carried out by PriceWaterhouseCoopers found that businesses are spending more of their IT budgets on security than before. It also reported that large organizations, on average, spent 11% of their IT budgets on security, whereas small businesses spend approximately 15%. The amount companies spend on cybersecurity is typically tied to the budget allocated to its IT department. A survey by Deloitte reported that financial institutions spend an average of 10% of their IT budgets on cyber-security. This is approximately 0.6% of company revenue.
In 2019 when IT executives were asked what business initiative would be most significant in driving IT investment at their company, 40% of them stated the need to improve cybersecurity protection. This was tied with increased operational efficiency and was ahead of growing the business, transforming existing business systems, and increasing profitability.
Investing large amounts of money in cybersecurity doesn’t necessarily ensure that your company is safe. Efficiently spending this money to ensure that you maximize the Return On Investment (ROI) is the real challenge. As a company, you should not only identify the weakness and strengths of your current system or find ways to improve the structures. You should also look at the most effective ways to ensure cybersecurity.
The following aspects of cybersecurity should be covered in your budget:
- Installation of Protection Software: Implementing and integrating protection programs such as antivirus, antispyware, encryptions, intruder detection, and protection and antimalware is essential to creating layers of barriers against cyber-attacks. These software programs should be updated regularly and kept at pace with the changing needs of the business.
- Employee Awareness: According to Osterman Research, educating employees on ways to be cautious in the face of cyber-risks posed to digital assets is one of the smartest investments with the highest ROI. Employees are the easiest targets when a company is a cybercrime target. Employees are targeted using social engineering tactics such as pretexting and phishing. This training may be carried out using posters, emails, contests, and computer-based courses. Training of employees doesn’t have a massive impact on cybersecurity spending but has tremendous benefits on lowering attacks.
- Outsourcing IT Support from a Third-Party Organization: If your company’s in-house team is unable to meet the security needs of your company solely, or the company doesn’t have adequate resources to cater for this need, outsourcing external IT support is ideal. It is a cost-effective method that allows your company to combine both your in-house IT department and the foreign team. This arrangement enables your company to have access to the latest technology, high level of expertise, and personnel with years of experience. Outsourcing allows the IT company to have access to your confidential data and networks. It is, therefore, crucial to evaluate whether the benefits outweigh the risks.
- Cyber-Education to Upskill Staff: Developing and maintaining the skill set of your IT department by implementing a proper certification program is an excellent way to ensure that your in-house team is up to date in expertise and technology. It also brings a high ROI.
- Purchasing Cyber Insurance: In some cases, a company is unable to secure its assets effectively. After evaluating the risks and the potential consequences of a breach, a company may decide to purchase cyber insurance to protect itself from these consequences.
This protection enables the company to transfer risk to an insurance provider. The company should ensure that they fully understand the limits of the policy coverage so that they don’t get surprised at what is covered in the event of a breach.
Your cyber-security budget will typically depend on the company’s size, goals, and scope of work. Cyber-security is an investment. Companies should devote as many resources as possible and increase the budget when necessary. Attention should not be on how much is spent, but on what the budget was spent.
Elevate Services Group is a Denver-based IT support provider that has been servicing businesses in Denver and the Front Range. With years of experience and high levels of expertise in providing outsourced IT services, we offer business customized IT solutions. Consult us today to get security solutions that will ensure your business operations run smoothly.