Cybercrime is a $6 trillion annual industry, affecting all businesses and individuals. Globally, cybercrime costs are expected to grow 15% per year over the next 5 years, reaching $10.5 trillion USD annually by 2025. In 2015, the cost was $3 trillion USD.
Although cybersecurity is an important aspect of protecting your organization’s data, there is a greater value in trying to build your cyber resilience.

What is cyber resilience?

Cyber resilience is an organization’s ability to prepare for, respond to, and recover from cyber treats and attacks. According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology, cyber resilience is “an emerging specialty systems engineering discipline applied in conjunction with systems security engineering and resilience engineering to develop survivable, trustworthy secure systems.”

Whereas cybersecurity focuses on the protection of computer systems and networks, cyber resilience looks further: when met with adverse conditions, how capable of thriving is your organization? How will you continue to operate when your cybersecurity measures aren’t enough?

Just like businesses have continuity plans in the case of a disaster, you should focus on creating something similar for your technology by fortifying your cyber resilience. The effect on your organization is real, and regardless of your industry or size, you need to be prepared for the eventuality of a cyberattack—and think about how your business will continue to grow when one happens.

What makes a cyber resilient organization?

At Xamin, we believe by strengthening these five areas, you can achieve a cyber resilient organization: 

  1. Assess: By understanding how a cyberattack could impact your organization, you can better develop proactive and systematic processes like business continuity and recovery plans.
  2. Mitigate: You can create or hire a cross-functional team to plan for threats and attacks—and implement strong cybersecurity measures to prevent them.
  3. Observe: With both machine detection and industry experts working on your team, you can be keyed into real-time threats.
  4. Respond: When the threat is at your door, you are able to rapidly restore your organization’s function with a proper incident response plan to avoid interruption to your operations.
  5. Adapt: Just as threats continue to develop, so, too, much your cybersecurity. Make continuous improvements to the plans you have in place to support your organization and thrive in adverse conditions.

How do I build my cyber resilience?

We recently wrote about simple steps you can take to improve your organization’s cybersecurity. Maintaining proper cyber hygiene will, in and of itself, help to mitigate the risk to your organization. As outlined by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the following 14 techniques are part of the cyber resiliency engineering framework:

  1. Adaptive Response: Implement agile courses of action to manage risks.
  2. Analytic Monitoring: Monitor and analyze a wide range of properties and behaviors on an ongoing basis and in a coordinated way.
  3. Contextual Awareness: Construct and maintain current representations of the posture of missions or business functions while considering threat events and courses of action.
  4. Coordinated Protection: Ensure that protection mechanisms operate in a coordinated and effective manner.
  5. Deception: Mislead, confuse, hide critical assets from, or expose covertly tainted assets to the adversary.
  6. Diversity: Use heterogeneity to minimize common mode failures, particularly threat events exploiting common vulnerabilities.
  7. Dynamic Positioning: Distribute and dynamically relocate functionality or system resources.
  8. Non-Persistence: Generate and retain resources as needed or for a limited time.
  9. Privilege Restriction: Restrict privileges based on attributes of users and system elements, as well as on environmental factors.
  10. Realignment: Structure systems and resource uses to align with mission or business function needs, reduce current and anticipated risks, and accommodate the evolution of technical, operational, and threat environments.
  11. Redundancy: Provide multiple protected instances of critical resources.
  12. Segmentation: Define and separate system elements based on criticality and trustworthiness.
  13. Substantiated Integrity: Ascertain whether critical system elements have been corrupted.
  14. Unpredictability: Make changes randomly or unpredictably. 

What are the benefits of cyber resilience?

By having an organization that values and prioritizes cyber resilience, you’ll be able to see a range of benefits—especially as they relate to cyberattacks. These include:

Fewer incidents. With strengthened cybersecurity and a better understanding of the risk your organization faces, security operations centers can filter potential threats and figure out where to put their attention to fortify your organization’s defenses, thus preventing the threats from becoming attacks.

Reduced financial impact. For those organizations with a strong compliance engine, the cost of a breach—if it occurred at all—was nearly 65% less than those without. As cybercriminals become more sophisticated, the ability to detect and remediate becomes more challenging. Protect your company by making technology and cybersecurity a critical piece of your overall business strategy.

Enhanced reputation. Ransomware and other cyberattacks can be detrimental to your company’s reputation, customers, and profits. Not only are the consequences usually severe, but there is no guarantee that your business will get its data back after the sum is paid. If customers know they can trust you, you will be able to develop a more loyal following along with your robust reputation.

Regulatory and legal compliance. The more your organization values cyber resilience, the more likely it is that you will be able to protect your data and comply with regulatory and governmental policies and procedures. Not only will this help you avoid fines and penalties, but it also puts you at lower risk for lawsuits.