Cybersecurity Needs A Fresh, Holistic Approach, Say Experts
With the growing sophistication, frequency and business impact of cyber-attacks, decision makers are realizing that a holistic approach to cyber security planning that continuously adapts to the complete threat landscape is becoming the need of the hour. Despite the growing awareness, organizations are still not immune to attacks. These were the discussions of a recently held Security Innovation Summit organized by digital security specialist Uniken in Mumbai, which brought together business and IT thought leaders to address the growing need for future-proof information security solutions and identify steps towards securing digital enterprises.
“With the recent news of organized crime breaches, info-security clearly is no more a concern of just technology practitioners of an enterprise,” says Sanjay Deshpande, Co-Founder & CEO, Uniken speaking at the event. Deshpande believes, the cyber-security solutions landscape is rapidly evolving and so are methods and techniques of cyber-crime.
“It is becoming increasingly clear that cyber-security and the corresponding risk mitigation strategies need to be intricately woven into strategic corporate decisions given the financial, reputational and legal impact on organizations. Hence, there is the need for more concerted and synergistic efforts at industry-level to overcome challenges and seek innovative & future proof solutions to the ever-evolving, rapidly growing concern of cyber-security,” he says.
Speaking about the advancing landscape of cyber-threats, Tal Mozes, Leader of Hacktics Advanced Security Centre says emerging trends such as social media, big data, mobile and digital transformation are shaping the way enterprises and its stakeholders interact with each other. “While each of these trends are business enablers, they also pose tremendous threats. On the other hand, digital crime is also becoming more organised, moving toward Advanced Persistent Threats,” he says.
Mozes tips off that in a rapidly evolving scenario such as this, cyber-security can no longer be an isolated function but requires a focused effort and collaborative conversations among the various functions in an organization, driven from the top.
“Today, there is a shift in the way organizations are dealing with cyber-security, towards putting larger efforts into prevention rather than just reactively protecting interests. Organizations are beginning to recognize and acknowledge that many of the current systems, while offering security, do not safeguard and proactively prevent many of the emerging threats. There is a stated need for organizations to find innovative and efficient ways to combat cyber-security concerns,” says Menny Barzilay, a cyber-security expert and former Head of IT Audit, Bank of Hapoalim in Israel, advocating the need for a paradigm shift in dealing with cyber-security.
Sameer Ratolikar, CISO, Axis Bank states that with the changing nature of threats, the CIO/CISOs role is also undergoing a sea change. The growing sophistication of cyber-attacks is driving cybersecurity planning and protection from an operational concern of the IT departments to the strategic agenda of the boardroom. “Going forward, more enterprises will hire CISOs who can demonstrate security expertise alongside strong business skills, so that they can effectively articulate the business value of security,” he says.
Increasing security complexities in the era of SMAC (social, mobile, analytics, cloud) signify that IT security has to be everyone’s problem in the enterprise. “Until businesses focus on creating a culture of security, and employees are educated and sensitized on how and why they have to protect networks and digital assets, enterprise systems and data will remain vulnerable to attack,” says industry veteran and CIO of Cipla, Arun Gupta.
The recent instances of data-breaches and info-security lapses have had a far-reaching impact on an organization on various fronts: financial, legal and reputational. In order to address the legal aspects of information-security and cyber-threats, Prashant Mali, Cyber Law Attorney who also participated in the summit mentions that while the cyber security policies in India are quite comprehensive, the problem lies in its implementation.
“The government should invest in training more cyber security specialists and also start moving towards uniform security standards and protocols. There is also a need for government-led cyber awareness program and a possible synergy between businesses and government to strengthen the ecosystem,” says Mali.
The summit also highlights the potential for Indo-Israel collaboration in the field of cyber-security, bringing together thought leaders from both nations in an effort to seek joint solutions and collaborative opportunities. Deshpande, who also champions the effort to bring together Indian and Israeli product companies together as a product circle member for iSpirt emphasized the need for the two nations to collaborate.
“Over the years Israel has fostered a spirit of innovation that has encouraged entrepreneurship. Israel is, today, recognized for having an advanced cyber-security market, with a robust ecosystem supporting it. We believe that there is much that we can learn from the entrepreneurs and experts in Israel to build and improve on India’s innovative product offerings,” he sums up.
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