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Best Bets for Your IT Security Budget

Best bets for your IT security budget are those investments that consider risk tolerance based on size, budget, business goals, and resources.

The IT security landscape is continually evolving. Remote infrastructure, user security awareness, and ransomware prevention are more important than ever. At the same time, the 2023 Security Budget Benchmark Summary Report found that average IT budgets grew by just 6 percent, slowing down compared to 17% growth in the 2021-2022 cycle. Of the surveyed CISOs, 37 percent said budgets were flat or declining. As cyber threats increase and advance exponentially, organizations on a tight budget consider which IT security investments will help them protect data and systems most effectively in the coming year.

 

Best Bets for Your IT Security Budget

 

Zero Trust

The push to invest in Zero Trust architecture has boomed in the past few years. In 2023, adoption of the framework has more than doubled since 2021, with 61% of organizations today saying they have Zero Trust initiatives. The motto of Zero Trust is “Never trust, always verify.” When it comes to cybersecurity, Trust is a vulnerability. Zero Trust architecture protects environments with network segmentation, preventing lateral movement within the network and providing threat prevention while simplifying user access controls.

Investing in Zero Trust is not about buying products that use “Zero Trust” for buzzword marketing. It’s about building upon the existing architecture. The benefits of Zero Trust include:

  • Visibility and context into traffic (e.g., users, devices, location, applications)
  • Reduced threat surface
  • Optimal use and authority of authentication
  • Reduces the ability of hackers to move laterally within the network and | or exfiltrate data
  • Protection against internal and external threats
  • Improved on-premise and cloud security postures

 

Secure Access Service Edge (SASE)

SASE is a network architecture that combines software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) and security into a single cloud service. Its goals are to simplify WAN deployment, improve efficiency and security, and delegate appropriate bandwidth to applications. Starting in 2019, SASE advanced to a favorite architecture among cybersecurity industry leaders in just a few years. Gartner predicted a 50 percent increase in vendors with single-vendor SASE offerings by 2025. As the cyber threat landscape and the remote workforce expand, SASE can help organizations evolve their security measures and access control over networks and technologies.

The benefits of SASE include:

  • Consistent data protection
  • Reduces costs by consolidating physical and virtual appliances into one cloud-native solution
  • Hyper-scalability within WAN infrastructure
  • Easy management
  • Greater visibility and control of data usage
  • Edge-to-edge security

 

AI and Cybersecurity Automation

The 2023 AI and automation for cybersecurity report by IBM found that 64% of respondents have used AI for automated security capabilities, and another 29% said they were considering it. Automating security workflows streamlines repetitive, manual tasks that take up precious human resources. In a cybersecurity skills shortage, talent retention is much higher when trained experts are not wasting their time on menial tasks that could be automated.

For those who still don’t have the internal resources to deploy automation in-house, many automation solutions can make adopting automation successfully and cost-effectively much easier. Processes that can be automated include monitoring and detection, data enrichment, incident response, user permissions, and business continuity.

Each has its benefits, but, in general, the advantages of security automation include:

  • Minimizing security experts’ involvement in repetitive tasks
  • Reduced chance of human error
  • Scalability
  • Predictability

 

Finding the Best Bets for Your IT Security Budget

Organizations should determine the best processes and products based on size, budget, business goals, and resources. However, cyber threat actors will continue to look for the most vulnerable organizations to exploit. Businesses in every industry should stay on top of the latest technologies and strategies to protect confidential data and systems. Contact us to learn how Securance Consulting can help you achieve your security goals.