The Importance of Offshoring Software for Cybersecurity

Excelling Above the Rest

Concerns about cyber security are no longer considered socially unacceptable. Recent high-profile security breaches have led to a staggering 34% of Americans having their private data compromised in the last year alone. Additionally, with the increasing adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT), concerns over safety have been amplified. Given that virtually all electronic devices, from smartphones and laptops to household appliances and various corporate operations, rely on computer systems, the importance of having in-depth discussions about cyber security has become critical. To address this, many organizations choose to outsource software services to alleviate the burden of keeping pace with constantly changing cyber security requirements.

Cybersecurity refers to the practice of safeguarding a computer system from unauthorized access, modification or deletion of its data, software or hardware, as well as any interference with the services it offers. As cyber attacks by malicious hackers are constantly developing and advancing, it is crucial to put in place a comprehensive defense system to protect the system.

Rising Perils of Cybercrime

The escalating worries of people and businesses regarding cyberattacks are justified, and statistics substantiate this.

  • In 2023, the United States witnessed over 130 targeted data breaches on a large scale, with the figure increasing by 27% each year. (Source)
  • 31% of companies have been impacted by cyberattacks on their operational technological infrastructure.
  • On a daily basis, we thwart the installation of 24,000 fake mobile apps.
  • The United States has the highest occurrence of ransomware attacks, accounting for 18.2% of all such cyber assaults.

Cybercrime can lead to significant financial ramifications, much like any other type of crime. When a company experiences a data breach, it may face not only monetary losses but also harm to its reputation in the eyes of the public. These losses can be severely detrimental and have long-lasting effects.

  • In 2023, the average business spent around $11.7 million on cybersecurity, reflecting a nearly 23% rise from the previous year.
  • On average, malware attacks cost companies $2.4 million and cause a loss of 50 working days.
  • Estimates suggest that cybercrime will result in an annual cost of nearly $6 trillion in damages for enterprises by 2023.
  • The loss of information is the most expensive consequence of a cyberattack, constituting 43% of the overall expenses incurred.
  • On average, in the United States, the cost of a lost or stolen record is $225.
  • According to estimates, in 2023, US companies had the highest loss of business globally, amounting to roughly $4.13 million per enterprise. This number takes into account various factors, such as customer turnover, harm to the company’s image, and loss of goodwill.

Various Types of Threats and Their Associated Risks

In order to safeguard not only the systems, applications, and data but also the users who access them, a comprehensive cybersecurity plan must include the implementation of multiple layers of security. Due to the wide range and variety of potential cyber threats, it can be challenging for organizations to establish adequate levels of protection. Cyberattacks are typically classified into 10 main categories:

  • Backdoor
  • Preventing DoS (denial-of-service) Attacks
  • Direct Access Attacks
  • Eavesdropping
  • Multivector Attacks
  • Phishing
  • Privilege Escalation
  • Social Engineering
  • Spoofing
  • Tampering

With the multitude of potential risks that organizations may encounter, it can be difficult to find specialists in every field. Therefore, many companies have decided to entrust their cybersecurity requirements to businesses that deploy experienced software engineers. This is frequently regarded as the most effective course of action.

Essential Elements of Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is the overall term used to describe the various techniques and strategies that are implemented to secure an information system. Companies typically rely on one of three prevalent security methods: preventative, detective, and corrective security measures. Preventative measures are employed to prevent attacks from occurring, detective measures are employed to detect any potential security breaches, and corrective measures are employed to fix any breaches that have already taken place.

  1. Application Protection

    Application security refers to a series of measures undertaken at various stages during an application’s lifecycle to prevent unauthorised access. These measures aim to correct any security shortcomings that may have arisen as a result of insufficient planning, implementation, or upkeep. To identify and address such issues, it is often preferable to outsource to a third-party business, rather than relying on the original developers, since they are typically better equipped to perform stress tests.

    Having a deep understanding of potential risks and common application vulnerabilities is crucial to effectively manage threats to application security, requiring knowledge from a variety of fields. By outsourcing your security operations, you can benefit from the expertise of specialists who are familiar with the most effective techniques for securing your infrastructure.
  2. Protection of Sensitive Data in the Digital Era

    It is crucial to take measures to shield any confidential information from interception, misuse, or other forms of compromise. This is a critical part of ensuring that information is secure. Possible disruption can result from both malicious actors and unexpected natural events. To provide maximum protection, security measures must be implemented throughout the hardware, software, and communication systems.

    In the realm of communication, outsourcing can be particularly beneficial in terms of cybersecurity. Many businesses, even those that have specialist cybersecurity teams, fail to appreciate the importance of providing proper security training to all users. Often, it is difficult to address any present internal issues with the existing staff. This is where external security service providers can be of great assistance as they can carry out accurate audits of current practices and teach end-users how to ensure maximum security of the system.
  3. Safeguarding Computer Networks

    Network security is the term used to describe the various actions an administrator can take to secure a network from unauthorised access, malicious use, tampering, or denial of service. It is imperative to ensure the safety of a network by authenticating the identities of users before granting access. Implementing robust security systems can help mitigate the risk of an attack and protect the data stored within the network.

    The duty of securing multiple networks – internal corporate networks, public Internet, etc. – lies with security measures. However, monitoring a large network and making preventive modifications to it can often be difficult. Consequently, outsourcing in this sector is rapidly growing, as many organizations lack the resources to assign personnel to consistently maintain their cybersecurity.

Cybersecurity and the General Data Protection Regulation

The discussion concerning cybersecurity has become more intricate with the advent of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This legislation from the EU establishes guidelines for the transfer of personal data outside of the European Economic Area and the European Union.

Numerous American businesses that have customers or operations in Europe are making swift efforts to comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). There is also mounting support for the implementation of comparable data protection regulations in the United States. The American government has taken the lead in cybersecurity research and development, largely due to its significant investment in military technology. Nonetheless, it is expected that private companies will also begin increasing their investment in this area, either because their foreign branches need to conform to the EU’s data protection laws, or because their domestic customers are demanding greater data security. Both of these factors could add further strain to businesses that are already vulnerable.

Cybersecurity Outsourcing Services

Software outsourcing is rapidly growing in popularity, particularly in areas with flexible solutions. Recent research indicates that the cybersecurity services sector is one of the most commonly outsourced areas. This study offers an overview of the outsourcing trends in this field.

  • 41% of the checks are related to safety
  • 52% of the evaluations are related to risk
  • 21% pertains to the IT Security Help Desk
  • 21% of all attempts are related to self-phishing
  • Around 56% of the security measures implemented were taken by individual businesses.
  • 33% pertains to the infrastructure used for managing information security.

Companies often weigh the pros and cons of hiring in-house cybersecurity experts or collaborating with an external partner, despite the evident need for such services. This can be a challenging decision because of the complexity of the technological landscape, and the ever-evolving nature of the risks faced by businesses in the digital world. Choosing the right approach requires careful consideration of the specific requirements of the organisation and the capabilities of the available options. Ultimately, the decision should be made based on the most effective way to safeguard the business against current and potential cyber threats.

Cybersecurity Staffing versus Service Provisioning

As the importance of cybersecurity becomes increasingly evident for all businesses, the disparity between the number of available cybersecurity professionals and the number of open positions continues to widen. It is estimated that there is currently a shortage of approximately 2.9 million workers in the industry. This has prompted 63% of businesses to report difficulties in finding competent cybersecurity experts. Moreover, 59% of companies have expressed concerns that they are either moderately or highly vulnerable to cyber-attacks. This shortage of cybersecurity specialists has been exacerbated by the lack of financial resources or access to adequate manpower, resulting in the significant demand for their services surpassing the available supply.

Why Outsourcing Should be Considered

Regrettably, it is not only large corporations with extensive data and dedicated IT departments that are susceptible to attacks. Smaller firms are frequently seen as easier targets by hackers due to the assumption of their lower security measures. In 2023, the incidence of ransomware attacks increased dramatically, from 2% to 52%, and 61% of small businesses encountered at least one attack that year. Additionally, companies of all sizes must comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) if any of their data enters the European Union.

Given the vast number of potential targets and the inadequate number of skilled professionals to defend against cyber threats, many businesses are now seeking help from external sources. It is not practical for most organisations to establish and manage a comprehensive cybersecurity programme using their internal IT staff. Even larger companies with substantial IT departments are likely to be deficient in the specialized knowledge required to keep up with the rapidly evolving cyber security landscape. Hiring experienced cybersecurity experts from reliable third-party companies is an effective strategy to bridge the skills gap and address resource constraints.

Additional Benefits of Outsourcing Cybersecurity

There are many tangible benefits of outsourcing security needs, without compromising on quality or putting the organisation at risk.

  1. Financial and Time Considerations

    Establishing a comprehensive cybersecurity team can be an expensive and time-consuming process. It involves installing the necessary software and hardware, researching and investing in security solutions, and then finding, training, and managing experienced security analysts. This process can take at least six months, in addition to the ongoing task of keeping staff up-to-date and retained. As a result, the required resources can be obtained for a fraction of the cost by outsourcing to a specialized team that has been pre-prepared and is managed by an external organization. Additionally, specialist service providers can rapidly and effortlessly expand their security operations to meet the ever-evolving needs of their clients.
  2. Expertise

    The field of cybersecurity is exceedingly intricate, and even the most highly trained and experienced IT professionals may lack the necessary comprehensive understanding to ensure a system is completely resilient to attacks. Inadequate knowledge may lead to hazardous situations. Even if a business has a dedicated cybersecurity expert, they may not be available at all times. Security incidents can occur at any time of day or year, and everyone needs a break occasionally. The only way to ensure the long-term security of a system is to have a team of experts who work around the clock.
  3. Business Acumen

    Organizations that specialize in outsourcing cybersecurity not only have an in-depth knowledge of the most recent security protocols and potential risks but can also be extremely beneficial during the strategic planning stages of a company’s expansion. A reliable security service should be able to provide valuable guidance on how to minimize the probability of potential threats.
  4. Enhanced Security

    Professional security firms are the experts when it comes to safeguarding organizations against a wide range of potential threats. They keep up with the most recent developments in the realm of cybercrime, and their teams consist of members who specialize in one or more areas, allowing them to take a comprehensive and thoughtful approach to security. By exchanging knowledge among their clients from a variety of sectors and industries, they can stay ahead of the game and ensure optimal outcomes. In summary, when you entrust a security firm to manage your cyber defenses, you can anticipate exceptional detection and response capabilities.
  5. Multiple Protections

    Even with the most sophisticated security systems, mistakes can still occur if the people utilizing them are careless with security or unaware of the pertinent procedures. In order to reduce the risk of human error, it is critical that all system users are well-versed in the strict security regulations, procedures, and protocols. By implementing multiple tiers of protection and closely monitoring all entry points, the possibility of internal staff causing major data breaches can be greatly diminished.
  6. Quicker Response

    Having a strong risk management plan in place is critical to remaining competitive in the market. A competent service provider can accurately identify all potential risks and develop an effective response strategy for any event. Doing so can help minimize the impact of risks and minimize disruptions to operations.

Choosing a Partner

The decision to outsource cybersecurity should not be made lightly because the selected security provider will have complete access to the entire network and all its vital data. Before making a choice, there are various precautions that can be taken to ensure you have picked a reliable and trustworthy partner.

  • As a general rule, it is advisable to trust your instincts and take appropriate precautions when dealing with individuals who do not present themselves in a professional manner and cannot provide full, verified contact information. It is recommended to avoid such individuals.
  • Regardless of how large or reputable a security firm may appear, it is always important to verify their references.
  • Ensure that the service provider has the essential expertise and resources to address all of your compliance requirements.
  • Verify that the service has adequate audit and compliance procedures by inquiring about them.

Hopes of the Cybersecurity Industry for Outsourced Software

As the variety of cyber threats continues to expand, discussions around cybersecurity are becoming increasingly crucial. It is becoming clear that no organization is immune to attack, regardless of size or status. Unfortunately, the lack of in-house cybersecurity expertise necessary to ensure full protection is not decreasing, leaving only the most well-resourced organizations capable of avoiding damage. A prompt decision must be made on whether to seek external help, utilize a combination of in-house and outsourced services, or invest in educating internal staff. Without a robust and comprehensive security system, any organization is putting itself at risk of attack.

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