As more companies relentlessly drive toward digital transformation as a way to be more competitive, technology and business leaders must decide how best to embrace these technology changes while making sure security doesn’t fall behind.
By the end of this year, businesses worldwide are expected to have spent $1.1 trillion on digital transformation technology and services and hit $2 trillion in spending by 2022. While that growing investment shows that companies believe technology is vital to their very survival, they don’t all seem to be vigilant about protecting that investment.
The failure to do so can be costly: New global research from various security groups finds that of 1,300 companies, those whose cybersecurity practices do not keep pace with their digital transformation initiatives are more likely to see $1 million or more in losses from cyberattacks.
A recent PwC report looking at digital transformation finds only 53 percent of 3,000 business leaders worldwide say that proactive risk management measures “are baked into the project fully from the start.”
The report finds that security problems surrounding digital transformation often are often as basic as not having the right people in place. The survey finds that only about 39 percent of organizations had enough people in leadership positions to address cybersecurity.
But simply adding a chief information security officer or a chief security officer from the very beginning of a digital transformation effort can put an organization on more secure footing, the report finds.
Further, the PwC report recommends boosting workforce accountability, communication and awareness around security issues during digital transformation, while also creating data governance programs so that leaders can grasp where critical data resides and how it affects a business.
Another security solution for organizations may come from converged data management systems (CDM), which eliminate the need for a number of hardware and software solutions and instead delivers a converged platform based on a distributed computing model. IDC reports that the worldwide converged systems market sales grew by 20 percent in 2018 to $3.2 billion during the first quarter of this year.
The good news for companies is that CDM systems “have the ability to perform many of the data protection and management functions of separate software solutions,” George Crump writes. “CDM solutions will leverage available API sets to provide agent-less integration with existing environments and protect them.”
In the end, one of the biggest barriers to having the right security in place may be the mindset of business leaders. A Dell report finds that “security teams often have been perceived as barriers to the business’s seamless adoption of new technologies because keeping the business secure trumps the benefits of technologies that foster employee productivity.”
The report notes that the “constantly morphing threat landscape” means that companies must always be ready to re-assess their security, while also working to change the relationship with security so that it’s seen as a vital partner in a successful digital transformation.
Perhaps more executives could be convinced of changing their mindset if they considered the words of Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw: “Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”