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Connected World: Key CISO Pain Points
Connected World: Key CISO Pain Points
November 18, 2022

In the next few years, there will be more connected systems, more data, and more organized cyber enemies. With cyber risks constantly growing, business leaders—specifically Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs)—have their plates full, and they have to do it in a tough economy.

Recently, and in response to modern health, social, and economic events, business executives have been forced to expand the IT boundaries of their organizations and their own capabilities, moving operations to more flexible settings such as edge computing. With new technologies, there are always new cyber threats. The CISOs and security teams are doing their best to ensure business continuity and it’s crucial to have the support of C-suites because of the greater cyber risks that have resulted from their digital growth ventures.

Across every sector, securing applications, networks, and devices is becoming increasingly complex because the attack surface is growing rapidly. CISOs are tasked with figuring out how to protect complex digital supply chains and any other element of their infrastructure.

As 5G continues to evolve and become more widespread, CISOs must also strategize on how to protect networks and endpoints outside their physical boundaries. Besides, most employees still work from home with personal WiFi networks and devices under unsupervised conditions.

With more data readily available, the challenge for CISOs is to have the means to analyze all of it quickly and yield actionable insights. Those who employ smart technologies to analyze data are poised to have greater visibility into their network’s health, behavior, and risk areas.

For CISOs, now more than ever, it’s imperative to have trained security staff, resources, tools, and technology to meet the modern demands of today's and tomorrow’s cyber warfare. But, where to get started? First, there needs to be a comprehensive awareness of imminent cyber threats and a cultural shift, from top to bottom, about cybersecurity resilience.

Next, we explore the landscape of cybersecurity for CISOs as well as their growing pain points and how to address them.

The Cybersecurity Reality for CISOs

The centralized approach to cybersecurity control is no longer useful because the scope, size, and complexity of modern digital organizations have changed so much. To make security decisions less centralized, the company is putting new cybersecurity leaders in different parts of the company.

It’s the fact that traditional ways of approaching cybersecurity are becoming embarrassingly ineffective and the reality is that cybersecurity is now everyone's business because of digitization, and as such, cybersecurity approaches should be modern and effective.

Fewer than 40% of those who answered a PwC survey say they have completely reduced the risks that their bold strategies have caused since 2020. The US National Institute of Security and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework names five basic cyber capabilities that need to be improved, which are Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond, and Recover. CISOs agree that this is the case, yet only 3% state they are optimized in all five areas.

Executives are concerned that their company isn't ready to handle the increased threats they face. Cybercrime, mobile devices, email, breaches in the cloud and business email compromise, and ransomware, top the list of emerging organizational dangers in 2023. When specifically asked about which threat actors CISOs believed to have a greater impact on their organizations in 2023 vs. 2022, this is what they had to say:

threat actors CISO

When asked about the most vulnerable entry points of cyber vulnerabilities attackers could use to gain unauthorized access to their systems, CISOs named mobile devices, email, and cloud-based pathways as the leading.

More pointedly, CISOs highlighted the following attacks as the most concerning to their organizations in 2023:

CISOs highlighted the following attacks

CISO Cybersecurity Concerns

Undoubtedly, CISOs have their work cut out for them when it comes to approaching cybersecurity in a holistic and effective manner. A catastrophic cyber assault is only one of several threats that CISOs are preparing for. Others include a worldwide economic downturn, a new health catastrophe, chronic inflation, and supply chain bottlenecks. However, just 7% of CISOs take a comprehensive strategy for resilience. In fact, among C-suite executives, only 5% claim they consistently use 10 best practices for consumer data governance.

In fact, only one-third of C-suites believe they have completely protected themselves from the dangers posed by the merging of operational technology and information technology, or by the rising usage of IoT.

Additionally, complexity is still a major issue with many CISOs struggling with unifying their software portfolio and embracing new technologies in a world economy that suffers from skill shortage. Next, we go into greater detail about some of the most prominent concerns at the top of CISOs minds:

Endpoint Security

Even though endpoint security will continue to be a struggle for CISOs, strict frameworks like zero trust, access with least privilege, and strong identity management will give them a fighting chance. For instance, some tools take a massive amount of time while performing deep scans on endpoints, hindering the ability to mitigate or remediate threats and attacks quickly. Some go as long as takes a full day to scan.

Complicated Cybersecurity Frameworks

Cybersecurity can become hard to manage. Most of the time, it's based on vague ideas instead of a clear picture of how the technology stops threats. CISOs need full visibility of their complex infrastructure and avert threats in a proactive way.

Insufficient Threat Intelligence

The problem isn't with data collection. The difficulty now is in sifting through and making sense of it all. Those who are skilled in data analytics will have a leg up on the competition and a clearer picture of their network's status, activity, and requirements.

Now more than ever, it will be critical to strengthen the ability to use AI and ML. According to market research, 93% of organizations are interested in adopting AI and automation to boost their security operations. Another survey found that 64% of companies are implementing AI and 29% are considering it.

Some cybersecurity solutions out there don’t provide full coverage, leaving users with data collection gaps and the need to employ additional tools for extended visibility. In some cases, users can’t see server owners, making it difficult to track down a server owner in a big organization.

State or Politically-Fueled Attacks

In 2021, various countries have been openly responsible for cyberattacks, either by themselves or through proxies. HAFNIUM, an organization with ties to China, led the charge in the attack that ultimately penetrated Microsoft Exchange Server. At the same time, the attacks on SolarWinds, JBS, Kaseya, and Colonial Pipeline were carried out by Russian organizations like REvil, DarkSide, and Nobelium. North Korea, Iran, and others also carried out strikes along these lines, but on a smaller scale.

Companies on their own can do nothing to stop these organizations, so the business community and law enforcement must work together. CISOs can anticipate stricter rules pertaining to the reporting of breaches, the security of sensitive information, and the approval processes for third-party vendors.

Cybersecurity Skills Gap

Many CISOs struggle to keep their security operation centers (SOCs) fully staffed because of the ongoing cybersecurity skills gap in the industry. Without skilled security personnel and effective tools, it’s increasingly difficult to maintain the enforcement of cybersecurity policies and processes.

Poor Compatibility of Cybersecurity Tools

When a cybersecurity technology platform is easy to set up and integrated into complex existing systems, it also saves resources–staff, time and costs less money. IT departments already have enough to worry about without having to deal with a new solution that won't work with the technology they already have.

For example, many tools don’t support legacy machines or applications, offering very few options for users. Or, in the case of some tools, the telemetry component of the solution is deployed separately from other elements, which can be confusing and difficult to manage. Another challenge with traditional cybersecurity solutions lies in onboarding or configuring new devices. To tap into the full capabilities of a solution’s portfolio, clients typically need to install an additional cloud-based endpoint management solution.

How AI EdgeLabs Addresses Each Cybersecurity Pain Point

Endpoint Security

Products that adapt, continuously learn, and improve over time such as AI EdgeLabs are making it easy for CISOs to have a one-stop-shop for their cybersecurity protection and detection needs.

Complicated Cybersecurity Frameworks

AI EdgeLabs provides accurate dashboards and reports that assertively alert CISOs and security teams of the presence of threats or any anomalous behavior that requires remediation. Thanks to machine learning and deep reinforcement learning algorithms and models, the platform continuously learns about known and unknown threats, making it easy and transparent for security professionals to trust the protective measures of their Edge and IoT infrastructures.

Insufficient Threat Intelligence

AI EdgeLabs is a robust threat intelligence software platform that delivers advanced network visibility, real-time and nonstop monitoring, and rich inspection capabilities. Our intelligence platform enables smart decisions and autonomous actions to protect from in-progress attacks. AI can look at both structured and unstructured sources of data. It can also combine internal and external data with threat intelligence services and open-source intelligence to get a complete picture of the situation and the threats in it. This makes it easier for the cybersecurity team to find incidents, respond to them, and get back to normal after they happen. The solution continuously scans for anomalous behavior and threat modeling. Additionally, AI EdgeLabs delivers severity-based prioritization, adverts with rich context on adversary tactics, techniques, and procedures, and scope mapping of MITRE ATT&CK.

State or Politically-Fueled Attacks

AI EdgeLabs offers real-time visibility across an organization’s full information security systems (SIEM), giving clients rich threat history and research based on historical data to prepare anomalous behavior reporting and forensics for security teams. In the early signs of irregular behavior, AI EdgeLabs instantly deploys automated incident response and remediation protocols to protect infrastructures before the attack turns into a breach.

Unreliable Cybersecurity Policies and Processes

Thanks to the intelligent, automated, easy-to-deploy and maintain AI EdgeLabs, CISOs and security teams remove complex policies and processes from their risk control equation. AI EdgeLabs detects and stops threats and ongoing attacks in seconds, including DDoS, botnets, malware, and threats to Edge and IoT environments and critical infrastructure. All thanks to its proprietary autonomous AI that analyzes data in real-time before attackers can cause any form of harm to a client's network.

Poor Compatibility of Cybersecurity Tools

AI EdgeLabs is quick and easy to deploy via Kubernetes containers, direct deployment on IT/IoT gateways, or partnering with Edge orchestration platforms. Our cybersecurity solution is packed for immediate use. Additionally, it’s not a rip-and-replace solution; it adds to what's already in an organization, strengthening security layers on top of everything a company already invested in.

AI + Automation

Leaders in security and risk management who are up-to-date on the latest and major cybersecurity developments such as AI and automation will be better equipped to deal with emerging threats and will enjoy greater credibility inside their enterprises.

Since CISOs are still facing the same problems, it's time for a better answer. AI EdgeLabs is revolutionizing the way CISOs and security teams approach cybersecurity by employing AI models that make accurate and quick decisions on malicious vs. benign activity in a client’s network to avert breaches. AI EdgeLabs effectively reduces the time to detect, respond to, and recover from incidents with enhanced security governance and compliance for CISO peace of mind.

Automation and AI can disrupt cybersecurity for the better:

  • Machine learning helps find patterns, keep track of new assets and services, and improve the way AI models work. For instance, Deep Reinforcement Learning, a subset of Machine Learning, helps with data analysis, scenario modeling, and predicting where new attacks will come from.
  • Natural language processing can be used to mine text data sources, improve threat intelligence, and add to knowledge resources.
  • Automation can help organize tasks that take a lot of time, speed up response times, and lighten the load on human analysts.

With the help of AI-generated insights, automation tools that are driven by AI can find threats by user, device, or location and then take the right steps to notify and escalate them while human experts decide how to investigate and fix the problem. When these things are in place, cybersecurity analysts can focus on solving more complicated problems that require human judgment.

The universal benefits of coupling AI and automation include

  • Less time needed to find, respond to, and get over incidents.
  • Improved governance and compliance for security.
  • Less SecOp team tiredness, helping them make better, more informed decisions faster and with fewer mistakes.
  • Reduced costs of cybersecurity by at least 15%, highlighting that processes for protection, prevention, detection, and response are more efficient and productive as a whole.
  • Minimizes data breach costs by at least 18%, which shows that the detection and response processes are working better.
  • Increased return on security investment (ROSI) by 40% or more.

Also, using automated and AI-driven Edge security at the point of access will protect against zero-day threats, malware, and other weaknesses. When companies combine AI with automation, they get better results in terms of speed, insights, flexibility, and being able to scale up.

In the end, CISOs should think about using AI and automation to make workplaces better by giving analysts more time to solve hard problems that require human judgment. This improves overall governance and compliance by making review and remediation protocols more effective and efficient.

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