22 Apr 2021

How businesses can get cyber security right and rebound

Guest blog: Tim Ryan, Senior Product Manager, Virgin Media Business as part of our #Cyber2021 week.

After a year of mass homeworking, some of us will soon be returning to the office as the vaccine rollout and the Prime Minister’s roadmap towards unlocking society progresses.

But a new way of working demands a new approach to cyber security, too. With employees operating from anywhere, critical data needs to be protected no matter where they are or how they collaborate.

To adapt to a more fluid working environment, security solutions must meet these core needs.

Enabling business continuity

After a turbulent 12 months, the last thing organisations need is more disruption. That is exactly what cyber-attacks, if successful, will bring.

And the problem is getting worse. 23% of IT professionals have experienced an increase in security incidents since transitioning to remote working, according to the cyber security organisation, (ISC)2.

Yet the fundamental link between business continuity and cyber security isn’t always recognised.

ITPro put it very well in a summary of the recent DCMS report on the UK cyber security sector during the pandemic.

It wrote that ‘senior management typically prioritise business continuity over cyber security, with a lack of acknowledgement that security itself should be a key component of business continuity.’

Organisations will be safer and guarantee continuity if they apply a range of security solutions rather than relying on a single, ageing system.

And enabling real-time monitoring of faults and vulnerabilities is also crucial because being alerted to a threat early can make a massive difference to minimising the impact of a cyber attack.

Uniting security and connectivity

Security and connectivity are one and the same.

If businesses deal with security through a separate supplier, there is more admin from an operational perspective and more systems or applications to deal with.

And even if the supplier is a security expert, they won’t have the same understanding of your network and cloud-based tools as your connectivity provider.

This can leave businesses with gaps to fill, rendering them less secure and less effective in the world of hybrid working.

Most importantly, however, if your connectivity infrastructure isn’t inherently secure without the need for third-party add-ons, your network (arguably the most vulnerable part of your organisation when it comes to keeping your data safe) won’t be as protected as it could be. 

The net result of all the above?

More risk. More hassle. More room for human error.

Making things simpler

95% of cyber-attacks are successful because of human error, according to IBM.

So it’s crucial for employees to feel comfortable and knowledgeable about cyber security. When they do, there’s less chance of a mistake.

When security is embedded on a network and all the tools that run on it, it becomes easy and intuitive for end users.

And for business leaders, integration will mean fewer suppliers and systems to deal with, making running a cyber security strategy much more convenient.

When talking about cyber security and the technical and operational challenges it brings it is easy to forget this is ultimately about people. Security is about how we relate to technology, and what value we think it adds to our lives.

That’s why a successful cyber security strategy depends on business leaders speaking to their employees and making sure it works for them.

By putting employees first and securing a technology partner that enables continuity, flexibility, and simplicity, businesses will be much better placed to rebound.

Dan Patefield

Dan Patefield

Programme Head, Cyber and National Security, techUK

Charlie Wyatt

Programme Assistant, techUK

Jill Broom

Programme Manager, Cyber Security & Central Government, techUK

Sam Wyatt

Sam Wyatt

Programme Manager, Defence and Cyber Security, techUK