As 2018 approaches, you might find yourself looking back at the past year and evaluating how you succeeded and how you could have done better. For business owners thinking about what to do differently in the new year, it’s important to consider IT security.
Hacking and data breaches have become commonplace, and businesses of all sizes and across all industries around the world have turned into targets for cybercriminals seeking access to sensitive information. In 2017 alone so far, data breaches have led to the exposure of more than 172 million records, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center.
IT security threats continue to evolve on a daily basis, and safeguarding data from those malicious entities should be a top priority for all organizations in 2018. And in order to achieve optimal IT security, your business needs to include cybersecurity in its budget.
Cybersecurity Spending on the Rise
As data breaches have skyrocketed worldwide, a growing number of organizations have responded by investing in IT security. Companies everywhere have realized how extensively data breaches and cybersecurity regulations could affect them. As a result, they’ve increasingly directed funds toward security services and solutions.
Global spending on information security products and services is expected to reach $93 billion in 2018, up from a projected $86.4 billion this year, according to Gartner. The fastest growing segment of IT security spending is security services – particularly IT outsourcing, implementation services, and consulting.
Why You Should Budget for IT Security in 2018
If you haven’t already set aside funds for cybersecurity solutions and services in 2018, you should definitely consider doing so. There are a few things to consider if you’re trying to decide whether investing in IT security is worth it.
1. The cost of a security incident. Experiencing a data breach can come at a high cost for your company. The average total cost of a data breach worldwide is $3.62 million, according to the 2017 Cost of Data Breach Study from the Ponemon Institute. You have to account for potential lost productivity due to your data becoming inaccessible, investigating the breach, and repairing the damage.
2. Your company’s reputation. A security incident can not only cost your business a lot in a monetary sense but can also cause serious damage to your reputation. Your current clients might lose faith in your ability to keep their data safe, and potential customers might decide to turn to your competitors instead.
3. Regulatory consequences. Depending on where you’re located, you might face penalties for failing to comply with IT security regulations. At least 42 states have introduced more than 240 cybersecurity bills or resolutions, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Additionally, certain types of organizations need to achieve compliance with industry specific regulations (e.g., healthcare providers must comply with HIPAA).
Determining Your Security Strategy and Spending
To figure out how much you should allocate for IT security in your 2018 budget, you’ll need to know what services and solutions your company needs.
Conducting an IT security assessment is a good way to benchmark your IT environment and identify any weak spots that cybercriminals could potentially exploit. Then you can look into implementing solutions and services like employee security training, next-gen managed firewalls, endpoint security solutions, and more.
If you have any questions about crafting an IT security strategy, our expert team can help. As a managed IT support provider, we can serve as your trusted advisor and assist you in finding the security solutions that meet your unique business needs. Feel free to contact us today by calling 877-599-3999 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.