5 Ways That Businesses Prioritize Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

When it comes to vulnerability prioritization, a large variety of reasons factor into the timeline for patches. Whether it’s pressure from clients or customers, compliance with organizational standards, or overall risk factor there will always be a reason to fix something (and rarely a reason not to). Today on PlexTrac we’re going to run through the top 5 organizational drivers that cybersecurity professionals have in regard to resolving vulnerabilities.

Data for this blog post was pulled from “White Hat Security 2015 Stats Report”.

1. Risk Reduction (35% of votes)

This almost seems like a no-brainer, but risk reduction is the most important factor to consider when cybersecurity teams prioritize tasks. Ensuring risk is minimized and defenses are maximized is one of the key tasks of the team, and reducing the overall risk of your systems will make for a more streamlined process when prioritizing smaller tasks.

2. Customer or Partner Demand (20% of votes)

Another important factor recognized by the study when polling cybersecurity pros was the pressure from customers and partners involved with the organization. These customers and partners know they have valuable data on your servers and networks. Customers are also the sole reason for survivability with any for-profit company. Therefore, ensuring customer happiness and peace of mind is vital to the success and functionality of your organization.

3. Compliance (14% of votes)

Once you get beyond risk and the pivotal need to keep customers and partners happy, compliance falls next in many professional minds. The need to maintain good standing and compliance with your organization and the numerous regulations they must follow was something important to individuals in this poll, and for good reason. It is important to make sure you follow the list of ever evolving and changing regulations, regulations that are updated often. This is a time-consuming and challenging process, but one that will protect you and your organization’s future. 

4. Corporate Policy (6% of votes)

The last named driver for vulnerability resolution was the corporate policies in place regarding your team, and how it should prioritize vulnerabilities and vectors. Most all cybersecurity teams have solid structures in place for prioritizing vulnerabilities. While these policy steps can be occasionally side stepped for important tasks and logical resolution order, this shouldn’t always be the case. Falling back on the detailed and realistic corporate policy standards your organization sets is a good standard to maintain and abide by.

5. Other (20% of votes)

The final 20% of those polled answered the questionnaire with a scattered list of a large variety of answers. This high number shows that there are many ways to approach the prioritization and remediation stage of attack vectors discovered within your network. There is risk to minimize, customers to keep happy, compliance standards to follow, and even corporate policy that points you in the direction of what “should be” next. These reasons, along with many others, are the reason why the field of cyber security is so complex and challenging, but also so exciting and rewarding.

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