WatchGuard Blog

49% of Corporate Directors Still See Cybersecurity as a Challenge

Boards of directors are working to improve their ability to oversee cybersecurity risk management. This is in response to the growing frequency and severity of cyberattacks, as well as new regulations that require organizations to take a more proactive approach to cybersecurity. 

According to PwC's 2023 Annual Survey of Corporate Directors, cybersecurity risk is the second most important challenge for management boards, just behind strategic/disruptive risks. In fact, nearly half (49%) of the boards surveyed felt that cybersecurity remained a challenge and 64% noted an increase in time spent on this issue at board meetings in the past year. Despite this concern, only 19% indicated having added a new board member with cybersecurity expertise in the past year. This data suggests that cybersecurity is a priority for boards, but that there is still room for improvement in terms of expertise in the field. To address this challenge, board members need to drive the simplification of IT environments to make them easier to protect.

Simplifying cybersecurity: the key to effective protection

Companies experience, on average, 44 cybersecurity incidents annually, according to data from the consulting firm EY. In addition, 75% of organizations require six months or more on average to identify and respond to an incident. This indicates that the complexity of security measures has become a threat to efficient cybersecurity, generating risks such as: 

  • Increased probability of errors. 
  • Difficulty in detecting threats and compromised visibility. 
  • Reduced flexibility. 

Organizations need to take a holistic approach to cybersecurity to address this problem which focuses on simplicity, standardization, and integration. To achieve this, we recommend taking the following steps: 

  • Simplify your cybersecurity solution set: 

    Implementing a comprehensive cybersecurity platform simplifies and unifies defense technologies, providing centralized visibility for more effective decision-making. In addition, it helps implement a layered protection approach, facilitates management, and optimizes the capabilities of cybersecurity teams, reducing costs. It also strengthens regulatory compliance and improves monitoring.

  • Implement automation: 

    Automation not only speeds up threat detection and response, thereby reducing potential access paths for attackers, but also eases the workload on teams.

  • Train employees: 

    Cybersecurity training is critical to reducing human error in business operations. It’s important to transform the cybersecurity narrative into a story that resonates throughout the organization as this will help employees understand the pressing need for cybersecurity and adopt secure practices.

Boards must ensure that their organizations have the necessary tools in place to defend against new cyber threats. This is especially important as artificial intelligence (AI) is developing extremely fast and this technology can be used by attackers and defenders alike. Organizations are now in a race to improve their cybersecurity, and boards need to be aware of the latest trends to make informed decisions.

While it is unlikely that all members of a board of directors will be cybersecurity experts, it is key that at least one of them has a basic understanding of this area. This will enable the board to assess the organization's security practices effectively.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of a comprehensive security and unified platform, check out the following posts on our blog: 

Share this: