Sentinel Cybersecurity is inviting small and medium sized organizations to utilize their services.
Rick Mello, CISO & Principal Consultant, said, “Cybersecurity is essential for any organization, but especially for those in the financial sector, where data and money are constantly at risk. However, many organizations lack the proper leadership and expertise to deal with the cyber threats that are growing and changing every day. Having an unqualified or inexperienced Chief Information Security Officer [CISO] can lead to serious problems for the security and reputation of an organization.
“A CISO oversees the cybersecurity strategy, policies, and operations of an organization. They need to have a deep understanding of the cyber risks, threats, and vulnerabilities that affect their organization, and how to prevent and respond to them. They also need to be able to communicate effectively with senior management, board members, regulators, and other stakeholders, and provide guidance and direction on cybersecurity matters.
“However, not all CISOs have the necessary skills, knowledge, and experience to do their job well. Some may lack the technical background, the business acumen, or the leadership qualities to manage a complex and dynamic cybersecurity environment. Some may be overwhelmed by the scope and scale of their responsibilities, or unable to keep up with the changing cyber landscape. Some may even be unaware of their own limitations or blind spots and fail to seek or accept feedback or assistance.
“The consequences of having an inexperienced CISO can be severe for a financial institution. They may include:
- Poor cybersecurity posture: An inexperienced CISO may not be able to assess the cyber risks and threats that face their organization accurately or implement the appropriate controls and measures to protect their assets and information. They may also neglect to monitor and update their cybersecurity policies and systems regularly or fail to comply with the relevant laws and regulations. This may result in a weak cybersecurity posture that exposes the organization to cyberattacks, data breaches, fraud, or theft.
- Loss of trust and reputation: An inexperienced CISO may not be able to communicate effectively with their internal and external stakeholders or provide timely and accurate reports on their cybersecurity status and performance. They may also fail to respond adequately to cyber incidents or disclose them transparently and responsibly. This may result in a loss of trust and confidence from their customers, partners, regulators, investors, or employees, and damage their reputation in the market.
- Legal and financial liabilities: An inexperienced CISO may not be aware of their legal and ethical obligations regarding cybersecurity or fail to adhere to them. They may also not be able to estimate the potential costs and impacts of cyber incidents or allocate sufficient resources and budget for cybersecurity. This may result in legal actions, fines, penalties, or lawsuits from regulators, customers, or other parties affected by cyber incidents, as well as financial losses or disruptions for the organization.
“Therefore, it is crucial for financial institutions to hire qualified and experienced CISOs who can lead and manage their cybersecurity effectively. However, finding and retaining such talent can be challenging in a competitive and dynamic market. Moreover, having a competent CISO is not enough to ensure cybersecurity; they also need the support and collaboration of other functions within the organization.
“Cyber risk management is a collective responsibility that requires a holistic approach that involves people, processes, and technology. It also requires alignment with the business objectives and strategy of the organization. Some of the key elements of cyber risk management include:
- Governance: This refers to how cybersecurity is organized and overseen within an organization. It involves setting the vision, mission, goals, objectives, and metrics for cybersecurity, as well as establishing accountability and oversight mechanisms.
- Risk assessment: This refers to how cyber risks and threats are identified, analyzed, evaluated, and prioritized, as well as how their potential impacts and consequences are determined. It also involves deciding how much risk the organization is willing and able to accept, and how to deal with it.
- Control frameworks: These are sets of guidelines, best practices, and standards that provide a structured and consistent way of implementing, operating, monitoring, and improving the cybersecurity controls and measures within an organization. Some examples of control frameworks are ISO 27001, NIST Cybersecurity Framework, COBIT 5, and CIS Controls.
- Regulatory compliance: This refers to how an organization follows the laws, regulations, rules, and requirements that govern cybersecurity in different jurisdictions, sectors, or industries. Some examples of regulatory compliance in Bermuda are:
- The Personal Information Protection Act 2016 [PIPA], which regulates how personal information is collected, used, disclosed, stored, accessed, protected, and disposed of by organizations.
- The Digital Asset Business Act 2018 [DABA], which regulates how digital asset businesses operate in Bermuda, requires them to file an annual cybersecurity report prepared by their CISO.
- The Cyber Risk Management Codes of Conduct provide guidance on how insurance companies, banks and financial service companies should manage their cyber risk. They also require regulated entities to implement data governance, classification, information security controls, and have an appropriately qualified CISO.
“Cybersecurity is not only a technical issue, but also a business and strategic one. Therefore, it is important for financial institutions to have not only information technology [IT] professionals, but also cyber risk management professionals who can understand and manage the cyber risks and opportunities that affect their business. IT professionals are responsible for designing, developing, maintaining, and supporting the IT systems and infrastructure that enable the business operations and functions of an organization.
“Cyber risk professionals are responsible for assessing, mitigating, and monitoring the cyber risks and threats that may impact the business objectives and performance of an organization. They also provide advice and guidance on how to leverage cyber opportunities and innovations that may enhance the business value and competitiveness of an organization. Beware of outsourced IT providers that claim cyber risk management expertise, as many lack the credentials, skillset, and qualifications. Relevant qualifications may include: CISM, CISSP, CRISC, and CISA.
“Cyber risk professionals need to have a combination of technical, business, and soft skills, such as:
- Technical skills: These include the knowledge and ability to use various tools, techniques, methods, and frameworks to perform cyber risk assessment, analysis, evaluation, treatment, monitoring, reporting, and auditing. They also include the knowledge and ability to implement, operate, test, and improve various cybersecurity controls and measures, such as encryption, authentication, firewalls, antivirus, backup, recovery, etc.
- Business skills: These include the knowledge and ability to understand the business context, objectives, strategy, processes, functions, and operations of an organization, as well as the cyber risks and opportunities that affect them. They also include the knowledge and ability to align the cybersecurity strategy, policies, and operations with the business strategy, policies, and operations, as well as to measure and communicate the value and performance of cybersecurity to the business stakeholders.
- Soft skills: These include the interpersonal, communication, leadership, teamwork, problem-solving, critical thinking, and decision-making skills that enable cyber risk professionals to work effectively with others, both within and outside the organization, to achieve the cybersecurity goals and objectives. They also include the ethical, professional, and cultural awareness skills that enable cyber risk professionals to act responsibly, accountably, and respectfully in their cybersecurity roles.
“In conclusion, small and medium sized organizations should reach out to Sentinel Cybersecurity, a new company that offers cybersecurity-as-a-service [management], security awareness training, various assessments, and more. These services can help them deal with the cyber threats and opportunities in the digital age, and improve their security, trust, reputation, and profitability.
“Sentinel Cybersecurity is the best partner for financial institutions, as well as organizations who want to achieve excellence in cybersecurity. For more information, please visit their website or contact them today.”
For more information, visit sentinel.bm.