Digital business brings big benefits, but not without some big risks.
Today, cybercrime has become way too commonplace and the aftermath is costing businesses a lot in both dollars and brand reputation. A recent IBM Security and Ponemon Institute global study shows the average total cost of a data breach, which includes what an organization spends on the discovery of and the immediate response to one breach, is $3.62 million. And then there is the high cost of gaining back customers’ trust, which is impossible to quantify.
Staring into the breach: The digital attack surface is “everywhere”
In today’s mobile, digital world, the reality is: the larger the attack surface, the more sophisticated and brazen the attackers and the greater the vulnerability. Whether you’re a government, multinational company, or a small local business, a hacker’s goal for your company is the same: find your points of weakness and exploit them. They look for gaps in everything from your legacy systems to your emerging IT, from your security and networking infrastructures to your software update policies. Companies that centralize all their data and security controls in one place are among the most vulnerable, as hackers can do the most damage with a single strike.
Many companies rely on virtual private networks (VPNs) to carry sensitive company data traffic to and from centralized data centers, where their security controls reside. However, most legacy VPNs are ill-equipped to meet the needs of today’s digital business. That’s because digital businesses as a practical matter are constantly exchanging data everywhere, from many insecure places and devices. In the current digital environment, identifying and combating intrusions requires real-time, localized security data and analytics processing and more automated security control management than these latency-ridden, long-haul networks can deliver.
What’s required? One foundational pillar is direct and secure Interconnection – defined as the private data exchange between businesses. Interconnection ensures faster, private, low-latency data transfer between any and all parties to best protect critical digital assets.
Trust nothing and install Interconnection-powered security guardrails
Gartner estimates that by 2020, 60% of digital businesses will suffer major service failures, due to the inability of IT security teams to manage digital risk. With so much on the line, many of our customers have found that the best defense against cyberattacks is to take a “trust nothing” cybersecurity approach. Similar to an international airport, they are erecting security checkpoints in all the places where their data is being exchanged, whether that’s inside or outside of their organizations. And they are leveraging Interconnection to do it.
To deploy your own organizational guardrails, first you need to understand your requirements for interconnecting your people, clouds, locations, and data. Start by assessing how your Interconnection needs will be affected by how your business is growing in size, geographic reach and distributed IT services usage. The “Global Interconnection Index,” a market study we recently published, can help.
Interconnection Bandwidth Adoption by Enterprises Based on Size, Geographical Presence and Use of Distributed IT Services
The study maps Interconnection Bandwidth, which is the total capacity provisioned to privately and directly exchange traffic with a diverse set of counterparties and providers at distributed IT exchange points. With the right Interconnection Bandwidth capacity, your IT and security teams will be positioned to more efficiently and effectively provide local IT services checkpoints and automated security controls to distributed users, systems, applications, and data.
The Global Interconnection Index will give you the industry benchmarks you need to evaluate your security strategy from an attack surface perspective. By deploying Interconnection in regions and metros that are closest to your users, applications, data, and security controls, you can help create the necessary safeguards to mitigate cybersecurity risk.
Scaling vigilance and resilience through cloud security services
With more and more globally distributed users, devices and data traveling in and out of their security boundaries, enterprises are finding it harder and harder to quickly deploy critical security controls such as automatic system, application, and security software updates, and real-time security data processing and analytics. That’s why more and more digital businesses are leveraging regional/local cloud security services to protect their critical digital assets and quickly identify and respond to security intrusions, no matter where they happen.
For example, many of our EMEA customers are making use of cloud security services, such as Deloitte’s global Risk Intelligence Centers, based in The Netherlands. Deloitte’s Security-as-a-Service solution is supported by our global colocation and interconnection data centers and the Equinix Cloud Exchange. These cloud-based risk and cybersecurity services enable enterprises worldwide to be more secure, vigilant, and resilient, first by determining how to avoid attacks via preventative controls and security management services, and then by working with IT and security organizations to continuously monitor their networks in real-time. Also, by using predictive analytics against baselines, trends, and history, they can respond to potential cyberattacks faster and with greater precision.
Deploying direct and secure Interconnection at distributed data intersection and security control points around the globe will help provide your company with the security guardrails you need to keep intruders out. For proven insights to get started, see how our customers are reducing risk using an Interconnection-first Security Blueprint.
Also, check out the full Global Interconnection Index to learn more about how you can tap into Interconnection growth to power your digital businesses to greater success.