Many companies tend to view security as simply an IT project, or more specifically, an IT headache. They see it as something every company “has to” do, but they want to do what they have to do, and move on as quickly as possible. It’s a checkbox; therefore, it’s given to the IT department to deal with.
The problem with this approach—other than the likelihood that IT already has a full plate—is that the people who have been given the responsibility are not in a position to understand the strategic value corporate governance and risk management can offer the entire organization.
It is better for the organization to view the implementation of risk management in the same way as when they implemented their Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, whether it is SAP, Oracle, NetSuite, Microsoft Dynamics 365, or any of the modern ERP systems running businesses today. When one of these systems is implemented or upgraded, it is treated as a companywide effort, with executive buy-in from the CIO, the CFO, the CEO, and the entire management team. Every person in the organization is mobilized and understands the strategic role the software plays in the overall success of the company.
The same is true with security. It is not just a checkbox to satisfy the auditors. To implement security the right way, it must have executive commitment. Only then will it trickle all the way down to every level of organization. By putting the right security controls in place—requiring periodic reviews of user access, performing segregation of duty reviews, looking at sets of access more closely, and tracking changes to critical data—everyone understands how having these procedures in place affects the security of the entire organization.
Unfortunately, a common mistake many companies make is to believe that once the security software is implemented, all their problems will magically go away. Yes, it will provide all the controls they need, and that will make the auditors happy; however, the reality is that, whether it is security, audit controls, government regulations, segregation of duties, or something else, security is achieved by people + process + technology. Getting these three elements working together is what gives companies the security controls they can count on. And these controls are important for all companies because they protect them financially and operationally, whether large or small, public or private.
Let’s also take this opportunity to say something on behalf of the auditors. Security is not something put in place simply to keep them from bugging you. Audits might seem adversarial to you, but ultimately, audits help the organization. Auditors are there to help the company succeed, first, by protecting the company, and second, to put the company in a better position from a strategic perspective. They should be a positive experience for everyone, and everyone should be willing and ready to help in any way they can.
And here is where security becomes a strategic enabler. By securing the company from internal and external attacks, fraud, and penalties for non-compliance, the organization is in a better position to build trust among customers and retain more of the money they earn. This lets them sell more products and acquire more customers.
Implementing security should be companywide project, supported at every level, from executive management on down, and viewed as an investment in the company’s long-term strategy.
Watch this brief demonstration of Fastpath Assure in action to see if this security, audit, and compliance platform is right for your company.