The Logic behind Measuring IT Security ROI

There is a need for businesses to measure IT security ROI, whether they like it or not. This is a worthy investment enterprises should consider taking on.

Seldom would you find a business that does not have an existing IT department in the corporate world nowadays. This is because more and more companies recognize the importance of having a computer network built for all users to connect to, to foster fast and timely transmission of data all throughout any workday. However, how sure is your IT team about the security of all the files stored within the network? With so many hackers just waiting for businesses to make one wrong move for them to infiltrate your system, security breach is indeed a threat that all IT departments have to face and contend with. Thus, there is a need to determine IT security ROI so that whatever investments the IT department makes would indeed be worthwhile ones in the end.

The former IT security advised of the White House, the Oval Office itself, Richard Clarke, once said that if a company spends more on the coffee that it provides its employees, then that company will certainly be hacked. More importantly, that company deserves to be hacked because it did not foster any initiative on its part to invest in proper and apt IT security measures. This goes without saying how IT security should indeed be prioritized by businesses all over the world. In fact, IT security should be considered more important than several aspects of any business, which include the integration of enterprise application, the installation of Customer Relationship Management software, or the increasing of network capacity. In spite of this pressing need, there are still many managers across the corporate world that are a bit hesitant about making investments in IT security because high costs are deemed.

What makes matters all the more complicated is the fact that the computation of ROI in IT security is not as easy as it may seem. It is not just about the determination of metrics to use here. This is because the benefits that come from a very secure IT network are seldom quantifiable. How then can you use metrics to your benefit here?

The simplest approach in determining ROI in IT security starts with the identification of the costs and benefits of the investments made. Make two columns for both pros and cons and be sure to assign values so as to make assessment of both aspects easier. Make sure to do ranking when the numerical weights of the figures are compared. Some of the benefits that deserve mention include risk reduction, increased productivity, company credibility, savings in employee salaries, and prevention of security breach. Costs could include expenses in terms of software implementation, internal change management, and productivity loss during the implementation stage of the software, especially during the initial stage. This is because more people still need time to get used to the implementation of the software itself.

Aside from the cons or costs entailed, there is also the need for management so support new IT security policies. Internal users – the employees themselves – should observe these policies very strictly. For all of these, it is sometimes recommended to hire third party services to determine IT security ROI. Such a move is deemed feasible because this helps determine how IT security should be integrated into an existing system.

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