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Worsening Cybersecurity

by Brent Kirkpatrick

(Date Published: .)

Cybersecurity disaster strikes when rising IT costs compete with security budgets.

Hackers hack into your systems, they break your computer software, IT fixes the software, budget pressures build, security budgets get cut in favor of IT, more hackers break computers, and IT fixes more computers. This is the downward spiral of your company's destruction.

How does this happen? Hacker's strategically do not want to be detected. However, they can damage your business by damaging the software on your computers. So, undetected they break the software on your computers. Your IT costs raise as IT fixes some broken software and replaces some hardware early. The hackers almost always go unnoticed.

cartoon: increasing IT costs as security worsens

You can detect this problem easily. If your hardware replacement rate is faster than four years and your down-time is high, then you have a problem. In general, users complain of slow hardware only once every four or five years. Most computers can have a happy lifetime of ten years as they are slowly phased into more and more retirement. Down-time is a measure of how often computers crash or otherwise go down. Down-time with security is generally very low.

Does this happen in practice? Yes, Intrepid Net Computing has seen this in at least one organization. You will notice from the news reports that Equifax may have been experiencing this. Equifax was behind on routine security upgrades, such as their SSL certificates. Furthermore, they complained of having difficulty with competition in the budget between security and IT.

If there is no security, there is no IT.

defendIT (TM). AI-driven security measures derived from security incident data.

Michael Rapoport and AnnaMaria Andriotis. "Equifax expansion shows risks." Wall Street Journal. Sept. 19, 2017.

AnnaMaria Andriotis and Robert McMillan. "Equifax hackers spied for months." Wall Street Journal. Sept. 21, 2017.

AnnaMaria Andriotis and Michael Rapoport. "Equifax ex-CEO lays out lapses." Wall Street Journal. Oct. 3, 2017.

AnnaMaria Andriotis and Emily Glazer. "Equifax lawyer in the hot seat." Wall Street Journal. Oct. 2, 2017.

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