Smart Cybersecurity Budgeting: Part 2

Cybersecurity has evolved into a much more critical and risk-bound than ever before. With the business organizations around the world embracing DIGITAL Transformation with data and information encompassing the core of any business, security and privacy have followed the suit. Any breach or leak of such critical information and data can severely damage organization operations, reputation, and management.

What is the role of a CISO In cybersecurity Budgeting?

Cyber budgeting and implementation play an essential role in business budgeting. Every business organization has its operational requirements according to its scale and range of operation. In today’s Budget discussions apart from digital transformation and business continuity, Cybersecurity budgeting has gained a lot of significance because of its sensitive nature and crippling effects on an organization. A Chief information security officer along with the cybersecurity team in an organization should work out a well-organized report to convince the c suite to share out adequate investment in cybersecurity. Therefore, CISO plays an important role in mitigating the cyber risks of an organization. The two primary steps that should be taken before formulating a cybersecurity budget are.

Cybersecurity Assessments

The cybersecurity assessments help the IT Heads and Digital Managers to perceive the cybersecurity capability and resilience of an organization. These assessments use various tools to detect the weak spots in the organization’s IT and security infrastructure which enables to choose effective cybersecurity investments. Risk assessments are done using standard tools which are based on best practices in the industry. These tools analyze the impact of the risks on various domains which include security policies, compliance, asset management, operations security, supplier relationships and other key areas. Some best standard frameworks include NIST, Cyber essentials, etc.

Strategy and Roadmap

Another important step in Cyber budgeting is a comprehensive strategy and road map to effectively utilize the cybersecurity investment and mitigate the risk. Once the assessment is complete, CISO and cybersecurity teams should choose a better strategy that ties all the business goals i.e understanding the costs of a potential breach and how much risk the organization is willing to tolerate, identifying the “crown jewels,” etc. factors which influence these strategies are lack of visibility, lack of control, overcomplexity, lack of personnel resources and others. Therefore, A CISO connects these dots in tying the risk mitigation roadmap into actual benefits.

some data points on cybersecurity budgeting

  • Security services accounted for an estimated 50% of cybersecurity budgets in 2020. (Gartner)
  • The total cost of cybercrime for each company increased by 12% from $11.7 million in 2017 to $13.0 million in 2018. (Accenture)
  • The average annual security spending per employee increased from $2,337 in 2019 to $2,691 in 2020. (Deloitte)
  • 50% of large enterprises (with over 10,000 employees) are spending $1 million or more annually on security, with 43% spending $250,000 to $999,999, and just 7% spending under $250,000. (Cisco)
  • In 2019, spending in the cybersecurity industry reached around $40.8 billion USD. (Statista)
  • Cloud security is forecasted to have double-digit growth from 2020 to 2021 in terms of security investment and spending (various sources)
Therefore, Cybersecurity is certainly a business imperative in this 21st-century digital business era.  Security and business leaders should look into cybersecurity as a substantial part of managing a business, especially data and information-driven organizations. There are three approaches to cybersecurity budgeting.

Proactive and Reactive Approach

Businesses should look into cybersecurity as a direct threat and risk rather than passive. In today’s business world security breaches and information data leaks have become a common affair. Can organizations take the risk of losing data? today’s security leaders should take a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach toward cybersecurity.

Bench Mark Approach

A benchmark approach looks at how you’re operating and compares it to your peers, a framework, a comprehensive study, or a group of interviewed organizations. When an organization can observe the best practices of other security teams (organizational structure, level of investment in security, KPIs, etc.), the organization can quantify its results and prepare a standard cybersecurity budget that begins to improve on weaknesses and strengthen opportunities.

Risk Based Approach

A risk-based approach is often considered a budgeting method for mature security organizations because they can categorize risks across several domains and budget based on the cost to mitigate cyber risks. This approach categorizes an organization’s security lifecycle areas by varying degrees of risk. This enables your organization to prioritize investment in areas that will make a noticeable improvement to your security operations.
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