How to cut costs in your cybersecurity program

There is no doubt that having a robust cybersecurity program in place is key and as research suggests, its significance will only rise. While we hope no one is reading this because their budget is decreasing, we do think there is benefit in seeking cost efficiencies where possible in your vulnerability management program. After all, it presents a better case for more budget if you can demonstrate that every penny you currently have at your disposal is being spent in the best way. This article will explain how you can reduce your cybersecurity costs without damaging the impact and effectiveness of your team’s efforts.

 

Run an audit of all the tools and security systems in place

According to IBM, enterprises use an average of 45 cybersecurity-related tools on their networks, and it reckons that the widespread use of too many tools may contribute to an inability not only to detect, but also to defend from active attacks. 

 

Take a look at all the tools and systems in use within your business to support your cybersecurity efforts. Do you need them all? Do you even use them all? Stop all that are not in use and review the remaining for cheaper packages or a more affordable alternative that perhaps combines a number of the services you need. Having a bigger toolbox can definitely be useful, but not if that means that time is wasted repeatedly switching from one tool to another. 

 

One way of combining would be to invest in tools with threat intelligence built in so you can still make the most effective decisions about where to apply your time and resources but aren’t paying for an extra system.

 

Run a skills audit of your department

Don’t worry. We’re not about to suggest that you get rid of team members – there is a global skills shortage in cybersecurity after all. What we are suggesting by conducting an audit of your team is that you may find that you have six security analysts who all perform the same tasks, when only three are required, and then you can retrain the other three in areas that you foresee will become larger security threats. This will save you significant recruitment and onboarding costs in the future.

 

Be ruthless with training

On the subject of training, while it is important to invest in the skills of your team to ensure they continue to give you the best support, be specific about which training you give. Don’t opt for broad training programmes where you’re paying for courses you don’t need; map out what you require now and in the future (as mentioned above) and futureproof the skills of your team. 

 

It would be wise to speak to your HR department to carve out training programmes that fit the needs of your team. You may also find that they can negotiate better prices for training than you can yourself. Not sure how to build a relationship with HR? Read our guide.

 

Look at the team’s leadership

A good leader will pay for themselves in the long run, and hiring a good team leader might help reduce your cybersecurity related expenditure as well. They know how it all works, and they can advise on what to do or not to do. This is something which definitely makes sense if you are about to invest heavily in some new technology as they could check it through and stop you from potentially making a costly mistake. 

 

Keep your staff happy and committed 

As mentioned above, there is a global skills shortage in cybersecurity so if your staff leave you, you might struggle to replace them. There may be a need to pay a recruitment agency to help you in your search, and to hire temporary staff while you find the right candidates. On top of this will be the cost of onboarding new team members which according to research from Oxford Economics and Unum, can amount to $34,400 (or £25,182) per employee.

 

To keep them happy, ensure you have considered their progression, have performance improvement plans in place and keep an eye on their wellbeing too.  

 

Automate where you can

It sounds counterproductive to spend money on tools when you’re trying to reduce cybersecurity costs but often automation of a job can cost far less than staffing costs. 

 

Setting up security automation will help prevent human error and enable your security analysts to use their time in a more efficient way. 

 

One task that takes up a lot of time in vulnerability management is prioritisation and delegation. RankedRight is a triage tool that automatically ranks vulnerabilities based on the rules set by its user, factoring in what is critical to the business, and delegating it to the most appropriate person to resolve. This means teams spend less time on vulnerability administration and more time on keeping their companies safe. 

 

To conclude, the more that can be spent on cybersecurity, the better, which is why every penny of your budget needs to be put to the best possible use. Follow our tips to free up budget to make your cybersecurity program as strong as it can possibly be.