Organizations across Asia-Pacific that adapted quickly to the pandemic by accelerating their digital transformation could have their hard-won resiliency threatened due to misalignment between business priorities and technology strategies.
A holistic, carefully aligned security approach and the right partnerships would help them retain their resiliency gains.
According to IDC, as a developed market, Singapore’s risk concerns are markedly different to the rest of the region. Systems hosting personally identifiable information (38%) tops the list of concerns.
In addition, the latest FortiGuard Labs Global Threat Landscape Report from the first half of 2021 demonstrates a significant increase in the volume and sophistication of attacks targeting individuals, organizations, and increasingly critical infrastructure.
The expanding attack surface of hybrid workers and learners, in and out of the traditional network, continues to be a target. The report indicated that local organisations in the manufacturing, retail, and healthcare in Singapore were the most heavily targeted sectors by ransomware attacks. The findings also showed that technology, banking, and social networks sectors were popular sectors targeted by phishing attacks.
Organizations face risks and a threat landscape with attacks on all fronts. However, IDC’s Asia/Pacific Digital Resiliency Scorecard revealed that only 34% of organizations in Singapore have a robust approach to cybersecurity.
“Keeping the business safe even as cybersecurity threats escalate, and the organization’s attack surface expands remains the core concern of the CISO in Singapore. In view of the IDC findings, local businesses need to balance business and technology priorities to enhance the value of their security programs,” said Jess Ng, country manager of Singapore and Brunei, Fortinet.
Approach to cybersecurity
|Informal||Limited||Portfolio of tools||Robust security regime||Sophisticated|
According to IDC's research, CxOs cited building resilience/mitigating risk (61%) and cost reduction/optimization (63%) as top business priorities.
For technology teams, both IT security investments and a shift to hybrid cloud models have been proven to address the risk issues of continuity and security. IDC has found that implementing security technologies to reduce risk (33%) is one of the lowest-ranked technology priorities.
CISOs in all markets are challenged with recruiting talent which is critical to the success of IT security teams. In contrast, improving the ability to attract and retain the workforce was seventh in terms of C-suite business priorities for 2021.
Within this paradox of misaligned priorities, CISOs and cybersecurity strategies must evolve to complement the business and achieve true resiliency.
Taking these trends and challenges into account, organizations are urged to adopt a range of business and security strategies to ensure they can continue to operate successfully and stay resilient as IT architectures and security risks evolve at pace. The recommendations include:
Ensure Alignment of Business and Technology Priorities and Processes: Effective security requires ongoing reinforcement from the executive level down. Organizations must review their security strategy and make sure it is aligned with their business priorities.
Employees now work from anywhere in the new normal and to secure a remote workforce, organizations must align business processes such as finance and HR with best practices around communication privacy and authentication.
These processes should also align with cultural processes that promote effective communication in an agile, trust-based environment.
Deploy a holistic security solution: As organizations accelerate their digital innovation, ensuring their security can keep up with today’s fast-evolving threat landscape is critical.
What used to be known as the “network perimeter” is now splintered across the infrastructure due to the explosion of network edges, work from anywhere, and multi-cloud models.
Organizations need a broad cybersecurity strategy, implementing a platform with end-to-end security, and a single pane of glass approach to management offering full visibility across the entire attack surface.
Adopt a zero trust approach: To respond to increasing and evolving threats, best practices now stipulate a "trust no one, trust nothing" attitude toward network access.
IT teams must move toward a zero trust approach to cybersecurity, which means all users, all devices, and all web applications from the cloud must be trusted, authenticated, and have the right amount of access privilege.