Businesses have always had to navigate change, driven by many factors, including the introduction of new technologies, requirements to move into new markets, competitive pressures, or increased regulatory scrutiny.
In today’s digital world, however, change is constant and broad-reaching. Organisations must continually look beyond their current state and imagine the operations, business models and infrastructure they will need to meet the demands of hyper-competitive markets and increasingly demanding consumers.
Change is no longer a formal process that unwinds over decades, it’s a daily part of business and vital to remaining competitive and securing growth.
Security remains a top concern
The pace and extent of the change required by digital transformation brings significant organisational challenges, and one of the most pressing is around security. If businesses fail to secure their transformed processes, systems and devices adequately, any resulting breach could cause irreparable brand damage as well as attracting punitive regulatory fines.
It’s a challenge that security professionals appear well aware of. In a recent Nominet survey, 53% of the security leaders we spoke to cited cyber security as one of their top three concerns around digital transformation, well ahead of other top worries such as budget (41%) and having an overly rigid technology infrastructure (40%). The vast majority (95%) of respondents to our survey said they were either ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ concerned about cyber security in relation to their digital transformation programmes.
When to consider security
Significantly, security is not always thought about from the earliest stages of such initiatives.
While 34% of respondents said their organisation considered security from the get-go (i.e. when developing their digital transformation strategy), a significant proportion didn’t get to it until the later stages, such as pre-implementation (28%), implementation (27%) or even post-implementation (9%).
Should this be a cause for concern? By failing to address security at the earliest stages of their digital transformation plans, are businesses leaving themselves open to risk?
Of course, considering security as early as possible should be considered best practice as it allows the security team to implement tools and processes that are perfectly tailored to the digital transformation strategy or business model.
However, for businesses that have started their transformation programmes without considering cyber security, it is never too late to start. The market does provide security solutions that can be installed at any point in a project and which deliver immediate protection to devices, systems and data.
For businesses that have progressed with digital transformation, their very adoption of digital platforms and infrastructure will help them retrofit their security capabilities. This is because digitally transformed companies find it easier to connect with external partners and integrate third-party capabilities into their in-house systems. These businesses will be able to quickly integrate the capabilities they need while drawing on an ecosystem of security partners with expertise, skills and industry knowledge.
To find out more about the intersection of cyber security and digital transformation please download our full report.