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Next Trends for Risk Remediation: Cyber Maturity

Vulnerability Remediation

When it comes to risk remediation, there’s one important trend you need to be aware of: Cybersecurity is good for business. 

Gone are the days when cybersecurity was a neglected add-on to the IT team’s responsibilities. Especially in sensitive industries like banking, healthcare, and any consumer-facing field, security teams are moving toward a maturity-based approach. According to a survey by ISACA, cyber maturity has become a top priority for IT professionals, with 65% saying that their enterprise now tracks cyber maturity—and those who do are twice as confident in their ability to withstand an attack.

What’s behind this transition? A recent McKinsey report notes a few external forces that have probably led the push to focus on cyber maturity:

  • Regulatory environment
  • Consumer expectations
  • Competitive pressures

The McKinsey report lists three key indicators of cyber maturity: (1) maintaining an up-to-date inventory of assets; (2) reporting on cybersecurity to the board; and (3) enforcing separation of duties for those with privileged access.

The report adds that “more profitable companies build stronger cybersecurity capabilities.” That’s probably because the tools required to gain a higher level of cyber maturity are often beyond the reach of smaller organizations. However, there are ways that organizations of any size, from small- and medium-sized businesses all the way up to the enterprise level, can attain the same results—and the same security benefits.

Let’s look at some of the reasons the industry is trending toward cyber maturity and what this means for you.

New Challenges Demand Greater Cyber Maturity

To put the cyber maturity trend into perspective, it’s important to realize that 35% of respondents to the ISACA survey also say they have experienced more cyberattacks in 2021 than in either of the previous two years. 

What has led to this increase? Organizations’ IT departments are responsible for protecting a broader range of endpoints than ever before, including on-premises, cloud (SaaS), VoIP, ICS, and physical components like security systems—with unpredictable, poorly secured endpoints such as IoT devices adding even more complexity. On top of this, the ISACA report additionally states that IT spend hasn’t increased over the same period, despite COVID and the challenges of distributed environments.

Furthermore, a McKinsey source notes that IT departments are increasingly being saddled with the challenges inherent in the convergence of OT and IT, meaning they must protect more and more diverse devices than ever before. This takes a broader range of skills—skills your IT department may not have in-house, particularly if you lack the big team that a larger enterprise might have.

Upskilling Is a Big Part of the Solution

Since we are exploring IT trends going into 2022, it’s important to note that this situation has directly led to another trend: upskilling to tackle today’s cybersecurity challenges, instead of bringing on new personnel with the required skills.

Upskilling comes with many advantages:

  • Builds a warmer, more loyal organizational culture
  • Nurtures in-house talent and creates attractive career growth tracks
  • Saves money and eliminates churn and inefficiency in key positions

Plus, ISACA reports that 78% of respondents said cybersecurity training had a positive effect on overall employee awareness of cybersecurity.

That’s important—but it’s not enough. Most organizations, regardless of size, reported via the ISACA survey that their IT was “somewhat” or “significantly” understaffed. Specifically, 63% said IT functions related to “Maintaining, updating or implementing security tools and systems” were understaffed.

What that means is that no amount of upskilling will close the gap and provide the necessary level of cyber maturity required to avoid an attack. The reality is that you still have only a certain number of personnel, and with IT cutbacks, doing more with less will continue to be one of the less appealing “trends” of 2022.

Risk-Based, Proactive Approach Will Dominate in 2022 and Beyond

You may have heard the term “risk-based” approach. Often, it goes hand in hand with the concept of cyber maturity. What it means is becoming more proactive and holistic and making cyber risk a part of your business decision-making. Organizations with a higher level of cyber maturity will incorporate cybersecurity scenarios in their continuity and disaster planning.

According to McKinsey, winning organizations are also the ones that adopt a variety of proactive strategies, like “regularly scanning the IT environment for vulnerabilities.” Yet they also say that for all organizations, certain security processes continue to be highly challenging—including incorporating “patch management compliance into senior-IT-manager review.”

In short, even if organizations know what it takes to get to a higher level of cyber maturity, they often don’t have the personnel—or the skills—to get there. 

That’s why even with the right people in place on your team, it can help to provide better tools to simplify these types of tasks, given how crucial they are for cyber maturity. The right tools can also help simplify the management and accountability of your organization’s cybersecurity risk posture.

JetPatch: Your Fast Track to Cyber Maturity

The ISACA report, while praising organizations that are able to reach a higher level of cyber maturity, concludes that many organizations still face serious challenges, including “obtaining the necessary organizational resources.”

In other words, it’s not always easy getting your entire organization on board. It’s not easy putting both the funds and the skilled personnel in place to make cyber maturity a reality. Upskilling your team can help, but the best way to save costs and establish a comprehensive vulnerability remediation program faster is with powerful tools that let your team do their jobs more easily and efficiently.

JetPatch helps organizations of any size meet the challenges of cyber maturity, simplifying many of the greatest challenges, as noted in this McKinsey report:

  • Managing the security of remote access. JetPatch protects your work-from-home employees and ensures proper update of OS and application patching.
  • Mapping organization and data flows. JetPatch offers pane-of-glass access to every single endpoint in your network.
  • Incorporating patch management compliance into senior-IT-manager reviews. With advanced reporting and benchmarking capabilities, JetPatch lets you track performance over time for continuous improvement and simplified compliance.

With JetPatch, any organization, of any size, can start reaping the benefits of cyber maturity. Start taking a more comprehensive, proactive approach to risk management, and discover the profitability and financial security that a cyber maturity-based approach can bring.

Find out how JetPatch can help you get there—and get started for free today.

Todd Kirkland
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