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6 Things Every CEO Should Know About Cybersecurity

All CEOs and board members today must understand their company’s security risks. Without this knowledge funneling down from the top, risk analyses and resulting decisions may be flawed, leading organizations to take on greater risk than intended.

Here are six areas within the company that are at risk which CEOs must ensure are being appropriately protected.

1.  Compliance
Compliance often takes shape as an internal framework that establishes communications and measurement procedures to ensure enterprises continuously meet government mandates. Understanding this framework enables the CEO to spot areas that are out of compliance and to take the necessary steps for passing a regulatory audit. However, CEOs should not confuse compliance with cyber-protection nor threat mitigation. While compliance advances industry and government collaboration, it is not a replacement for sound risk-based decision processes for cyber resilience.

“Organizations must treat privacy as both a compliance and business risk issue to reduce regulatory sanctions and commercial impacts due to security breaches.”

2. Privacy and Regulation
Most governments (particularly across the European Union) have already created, or are in the process of creating, regulations that impose conditions on the safeguard and use of personally identifiable information (PII), with severe penalties for organizations that fail to sufficiently protect it. As a result, organizations need to treat privacy as both a compliance and business risk issue, to reduce regulatory sanctions and commercial impacts such as reputational damage and loss of customers due to privacy breaches. Expect this to continue and develop further, imposing an overhead in regulatory management above and beyond the security function.

3. Reputational Damage
Attackers have become more organized, attacks have become more sophisticated, and all threats are more dangerous and pose more risks to an organization’s reputation. In addition, the trust dynamic that exists between suppliers, customers and partners are targets for the cybercriminal and hacktivist. CEOs need to ensure their company is equipped to quickly deal with the reputational damage these attacks can cause. The faster you can respond to reputational attacks, the better your outcomes will be.

About Steve Durbin

Steve Durbin
Steve Durbin is Managing Director of the Information Security Forum , where he focuses on the emerging security threat landscape, cyber security, BYOD, the cloud, and social media across both the corporate and personal environments.