As the digitization of data continues to develop, so does the value it gives to businesses and the increased need to secure it for all enterprises.
In fact, companies that value the importance of data have completely rebuilt their existing systems, platforms, and infrastructures with security in mind.
To have a secure enterprise architecture, an IT security approach—where security is the fundamental design principle of an IT enterprise and not just another area or layer, needs to be the goal of every company dealing with data.
To efficiently get there, an IT security roadmap needs to be drawn from a solid and clear vision of a goal, backed by a culture supporting it.
How to Create an IT Security Roadmap
1. Start with a vision of what your goal translates into.
A secure enterprise architecture needs to be business-driven, and your IT system should be able to support your business objectives. Thus, the importance of planning and developing these systems while taking into consideration business strategies.
CIOs should work closely with CEOs and business leaders to translate this into an integrated reality. CEOs need to discuss their vision for the company, along with their planned strategies or action steps to reach that vision with CIOs for proper assessment and advise them on the risks involved in taking such steps.
Along the way, CIOs can offer IT solutions that can help propel these business strategies to new heights and implement them efficiently. Companies should understand that in this digital age, CIOs or the IT department should no longer just be a service department but a consulting department as well. They need to be included in the planning stage of every project or strategy to carry out plans with security and the necessary IT support system.
2. Create roadmaps by focusing on one process at a time.
Well thought of, managed, and gradual transformations are more efficient than hastily carried out overhauls or revamps that don’t address specific issues on a per process detail.
For a company to actually create a secure enterprise architecture, security needs to be discussed in every area of the business—from data management, website security, back up services, cloud technology, user control and access, etc. This is on top of infrastructure and program/software requirements an IT security analyst needs to assess for risks or vulnerabilities.
Business leaders need to focus on the most important and technically advanced areas first by working on the performance, reliability, integrity, safety, infrastructure, and policy needs before working outward from there.
3. Actively adopt and embed the secure enterprise architecture into its organizational culture.
Once a company can set up the business-driven secure architecture, business leaders need to ensure that it is actively adopted throughout their organization. Encourage employees by offering targeted, role-based training and continuing education for them.
For example, security patches rolled out into the system to protect it from threats need to be explained to end-users. Furthermore, system users (employees) need to be continuously oriented on security procedures and policies and the latest information security threats to be aware and vigilant against suspicious activities. Security policies need to be strictly implemented and constant monitoring should be enforced.
Cyber threats have become a persistent to businesses today. And while setting up digital fortresses to secure one’s business seems to be the first course of action of many companies, it can even lead to more vulnerabilities.
Securing an organization should start from the inside out. Solidify your road map by aligning business strategies with security by consulting both IT and business leaders before building the system—the secure enterprise architecture. This is not only more effective but scalable as well, as it serves your company’s business priorities even as they grow and change.