How to Secure Your Digital Transformation

Throughout the ages, one of the mantras of successful businesses around the world has been – transform or perish. And in today’s fast-evolving and highly disruptive world of technology, we see that the digital transformation of business also depends on the right use of technology.

Digital transformation drivers are many – to take products and services to market more cost-effectively, to reach out to a broader customer base, to appeal to new audiences, etc. Disruptive technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and cloud promise to help a business gain a better competitive advantage and increase efficiency. But on the other hand, with new technologies come new risks. Previously inexperienced with, they pose as a threat to an organization’s assets. It is a balancing act to protect those assets and customer trust. The digital transformation process must be planned well – with security top of mind.

The Business Goals of Digital Transformation

More and more companies have begun or have already completed their digital transformation process, but there are still many that struggle to protect their infrastructure. Digital transformation is all about using data and technology to drive better business outcomes and innovation. With the digital change, enterprises plan to achieve specific business goals, such as operational efficiencies, customer insights, enhanced business agility, and increased market share. Concerned with bringing these changes about, they’re looking at four key technologies:

  • Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence
  • Mobility
  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Cloud

So, how can enterprises build security into everything to ensure a successful digital transformation?

New Risks

More enterprises are adopting the digital approach and investing in technology to enhance productivity. There’s been an increase in the number of open source software, virtualized infrastructures, and serverless architecture. However, by taking the virtual route, enterprises become more vulnerable. Cyber-criminals are presented with many entry points into their systems and can disrupt the organization. Therefore, total visibility and transparency are necessary to raise cybersecurity concerns and ensure an enterprise is fully protected.

Striking a Balance between Security and Technology

Understanding cyber exposure

Organizations must understand their cyber exposure across data stores, cloud infrastructures, applications, networks, and user access privileges. An excellent method for gaining an overview of the whole system is penetration testing. This method can help IT staff detect and highlight vulnerable assets and show critical issues that put the business to higher risk.

Rely on automation

Next, an enterprise can benefit from inducing automation within its security monitoring solutions. It is an efficient way to match the techniques that today’s cyber-criminals use and that are continuously changing. Organizations that patch only a few times per year can benefit from this because neglecting system updates and patching stands as a large entry point for cyber-criminals. An automated security process (or at least some parts of it) will help reduce the threat surface and leave security teams to concentrate on dealing with issues on risk levels which maximizes their efficiency and time.

These tests can provide invaluable information, so organizations shouldn’t neglect them. They also must understand the risk of vulnerabilities found in their environment and address their findings from a technical and business perspective. It will help C-level executives bring better-informed decisions when deciding on the remediation strategy, giving security teams a better view into different technologies and solutions they could use to address the challenges.

Align security, network, and collaboration teams

When workers are using their devices for work or working remotely, they need to access sensitive information. They will be doing that from customer experience tools, third-party collaboration, or on-premises tools. Because of that, enterprises aim to put their network functions in the cloud. However, in many companies, security teams aren’t always aware which tools shouldn’t be there as new platforms launch from across the enterprise. So, it’s essential to align all your security, network, and collaboration teams.

Integrate for visibility

Security has become a business issue, and during the process of digital transformation, the enterprise is vulnerable to cyber-attacks. So, having visibility across every department is crucial because every staff member should be able to identify an attack and respond quickly. Integrate the applications and technologies you need from different vendors to create a single view of the entire network (while maintaining visibility and control in one place.) You can bring together, connect, and analyze data from different systems to deliver metrics and bring to your attention those threats that require action.

An enterprise must go through digital transformation to thrive and innovate. However, risk comes with every new opportunity. By focusing on embedding security into your development process, appropriate monitoring, and technology and network architecture will ensure your enterprise continues to reap the benefits of its DT journey, but also mitigate the associated risks.

IT security teams are probably the ones suffering the most as the number of technologies continues to expand. These teams are the ones responsible for the safety of all systems, but they also lack in workforce and resources. Security teams need assistance and solutions to this problem in the form of automation of cybersecurity process and more staff to lessen their burden.

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