TL;DR: Tracking the ROI of Insider Threats, prioritizing user awareness, and understanding the risk profile of your industry can help you secure the Insider Threat budget you need.
How much time does your team spend on planning and securing budgeting? If you’re like many IT and security teams, the answer could be “a lot.” Perhaps too much. So, for this month’s Time-Saving Security Tips, we want to provide some ammunition that can help your team secure the budget needed to properly combat Insider Threats.
Track the ROI of Insider Threat Efforts
One of the best ways to make budget conversations go smoothly is to track your team’s efforts and results over time. If you put a system in place to track important Insider Threat metrics throughout the year, and continually evaluate how various programs are impacting those metrics, you should have a clear path forward when it comes time to build the new budget. This should go a long way toward speeding up budget conversations.
In this blog post, we share the common Insider Threat metrics that are worth tracking, and provide details about how to tailor them to your unique business. These include metrics related to human resources, incident rates and response, investigations, and costs related to Insider Threat. The more data you have on hand to demonstrate the value of what you are doing, the more likely you are to secure the budget you need going forward.
Importantly, it’s a good idea to track the ROI of your Insider Threat efforts, as these are the types of numbers that directly correlate your efforts to business outcomes. Stakeholders respond well to and that approach, which will help secure the resources you need to succeed.
Make Awareness a Separate Category
Insider Threats are unique, compared to other types of risks, in that two out of three are the result of negligent or accidental behavior—not intentional wrongdoing. This means that security awareness training can have a massive impact on your Insider Threat risk and incident costs.
For this reason, we recommend making awareness a separate category within your Insider Threat budget and conveying to stakeholders the importance of clear and regular training, real-time user education, and technological investment that prevents Insider Threats from succeeding. Awareness training isn’t free per se, but when taken in the overall context of how it can prevent threats from evolving, it almost certainly pays for itself.
Learn more about our recommended best practices for cybersecurity budgeting around awareness.
Understand the Risk Profile of Your Industry
Another way to speed up budget negotiations is to demonstrate a clear understanding of your business’s risk profile by researching how Insider Threats typically arise in your industry.
For example, in the financial services space, Insider Threats often arise when buy-side analysts leave one firm for another. Often, as they’re jumping ship to a competitor, analysts take models and research with them. They may do this by emailing, printing, or uploading the data to a USB. In the competitive, high-stakes world of hedge funds and proprietary trading, this type of malicious insider behavior can cost firms big money. On the negligent side, poor security hygiene can wreak similar havoc. For instance, a well-meaning quantitative code developer may mistakenly leave servers in the cloud unprotected, opening the organization up to hacks and data loss. Whether intentional or accidental, user-posed risks to critical IP leave investment management firms sensitive to Insider Threats.
These are examples of unique Insider Threats that impact this particular industry. Understanding your own industry’s specific risk profile will help you secure the budget you need to defend the organization.
Get Ahead this Budget Season
As you navigate budget season, keeping these three tips in mind should help you streamline the process and decrease the amount of time and back-and-forth required. Armed with these pointers, you should be able to prove to your higher-ups the resources required to adequately and properly defend against Insider Threats at your unique organization.
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