Part 3: What keeps you up at night?

Security

What’s the price tag for your company’s data?

Americans are more worried about being the victim of a cybercrime than any other crime, according to a Gallup study. As a business owner, it’s not just your data that must remain secure, but also the data of your employees, your company and your clients.

With the Marriott International breach in 2018 and the Equifax breach in 2017, CEOs list cybersecurity as their No. 1 external concern in 2019—even above creating new business and another recession.

But knowing is half the battle, and most customers are simply unaware how insecure their IT environment is. When it comes to safeguarding your information, keeping the light on just isn’t enough.

Impacting every industry

HubSpot recently compiled “The Biggest Challenges That Keep Leaders Up at Night,” which addressed cybersecurity, noting that attacks are evolving and getting more complex:

“Breaches most certainly affect businesses and consumer confidence as well, where data breaches can shake up consumers’ perception of a brand, and it takes years to rebuild that trust.”

From addresses to social security numbers to bank account information, every company has sensitive information that needs to be protected. No matter your industry, security is paramount, and if you’re in fields like government or health care, that threshold is even higher.

Some organizations don’t have a dedicated CIO to look after the vulnerabilities they’re facing. That’s where tools, process and governance around those processes is very important, and where having an IT partner who specializes in strategy is worth its weight in gold. From the start, your IT partner can identify what solutions are right for your organization, create policies that protect your company and your employees from risk, and follow through by implementing the right solution on the back end.

Secure storage

A number of our clients have been hesitant to switch to the cloud for fear of making themselves more vulnerable to attacks. Statistically, major breaches are due to an internal employee or contractor, and your important information is more vulnerable in a filing cabinet than it is in cloud storage.

Top cloud providers, such as Microsoft, Oracle and Google, offer multiple layers of security. Using one of these third-party providers, your files are encrypted from inception to delivery, including while stored in the data center and while at “rest.”

We’re a Microsoft Gold Partner and assist in Microsoft’s Technology Adaption Program (TAP), where we participate in the internal release of products to give feedback to the Microsoft product team. We focus on usability and vulnerabilities that may exist in a product to ensure that it’s nearly impenetrable by the time it hits the market. We take the same approach to our custom applications.

Personalized protection

If you’re interested in a custom application, you shouldn’t cut corners, as custom applications are more likely to be hacked. Most developers will leave holes behind, making your company a sitting duck for a cyberattack.

That’s why INNOVA has an internal application development team that only uses top third-party cloud-based security providers. We also go the extra mile, partnering with organizations that do hardcore PEN testing, an authorized simulated cyberattack on a system to find gaps in security that can be exploited in order to patch any holes that may exist and keep your system secure.

A worthy investment

CIO Dive recently analyzed a Conference Board survey of more than 800 international CEOs and 600 C-suite members that found only one-third of companies view security as a threat to business growth, despite the price tag for cyberattacks over the next five years mounting to as high as $5.2 trillion:

“Ignoring security is ill-advised … CEOs in the high-tech industry have more than $753 billion to lose in the event of a security incident, according to an Accenture report. Life sciences and automotive industries could be hit with more than $642 billion and $505 billion, respectively, in costs.”

The cost for strong tech may seem high, but the cost of a cybersecurity breach is higher. Businesses should be spending money to making sure their environment is secure, and they should continue to invest on an annual basis.

If you don’t have a CIO on your team, we can help ensure you sleep better at night knowing your information is protected.

This is the third blog in our “What keeps you up at night?” series, exploring the concerns business leaders face with their IT systems and processes. Read our previous blogs on budget & resource constraints and scalability.

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