The need for IT system risk assessment cannot be overlooked whether you run a small business or a big organization. Failing to conduct regular IT risk assessments can increase the likelihood that your company will experience a data breach.
A risk assessment helps outline the probability of these potential threats occurring, which can help you make conscious decisions about mitigating their likelihood of coming about in the future. It also brings efficiency to other areas, including financial planning and company communication. Here are four reasons why you should conduct regular IT risk assessments.
- Identify and remediate vulnerabilities
No matter how sophisticated your IT systems are, you can never be immune to cybersecurity threats. Cybercriminals, hackers, malware, and viruses are always looking to exploit any loopholes or weaknesses in your system.
IT risk assessment by an reputable IT company like F12.NET can help you identify potential threats to your business and ensure your team of experts repairs the loopholes before any data is corrupted. They use tools such as Qualys and Nessus to automatically scan your network, determine where your gaps are, and provide a way to fix and patch.
- Legal requirements compliance
Most companies have to comply with various law requirements, including privacy and data security. For instance, any business running in the US has to regularly evaluate its risk to comply with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Hospitals and other healthcare facilities have to comply with HIPAA, which needs them to document their administrative and technical measures for patient data. They are also required to conduct risk assessments to make sure that those measures are effective.
Regular risk assessment of IT systems is also essential for organizations that need to observe privacy standards such as Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) or financial disclosure laws like Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX). Failure to comply with these regulations can be extremely expensive for any company.
- Protection against financial losses
Data breaches and their consequences can financially ruin your thriving business. For instance, handling the fallout of security breaches such as a lawsuit might cost you a significant chunk of your budget. On the other hand, using the lowest level of security measures can be inefficient if the security gap stays exposed.
Conducting an IT risk assessment is the best way to avoid these kinds of devastating losses. An assessment will help you plan ahead and decide what fraction of your budget is sufficient for your IT security. A detailed risk assessment will also map out exactly which loopholes and weaknesses take priority and why by describing the impact each might have on your business if neglected.
- Protect your reputation
Security breaches may affect how prospective customers and employees view your company. Your business looks less trustworthy if there are looming security issues, which in turn may affect the number of people willing to keep doing business with you. Regular security risk assessment can reduce the risk of data breaches, which may secure your position and relationships with stakeholders.
The primary purpose of IT risk assessment is to combine your company’s IT department with organizational decision-makers to help strengthen cybersecurity. With proper assessments of your IT systems’ vulnerabilities and the value of your data assets, you can refine your IT security policies, better defend against cyberattacks, and protect your critical assets.