Guide to choose the right cyber security partner

Guide to choose the right cyber security partner cybergate your cyber security partner

Guide to choose the right cyber security partner


What to look for when choosing a cyber security partner.

Not taking cyber security seriously can lead any organisation to a disaster, therefore it is always recommended to have a cyber security strategy in place, backed by standard operating procedures and day-to-day best practices. Having an external cyber security partner aids in achieving better security levels and overall success. The cybersecurity space seems overcrowded, with a number of options and available arrangements.

When choosing a cyber security partner, you are investing in peace of mind. In this article we provide a number of tips to take into account when selecting a cybersecurity partner.

Simply having a number of automated security software packages in place is not enough, given the increase in digital surface of organizations and the sophistication of hackers’ techniques. When analysing the various cybersecurity providers one has to consider the size, experience, approach and level agreements offered. Not having the right partner can have a negative impact on your business, which you will regret forever.

The selected partner needs to integrate well with the company and co-management of risks is to be carried out on an ongoing basis. Trust needs to be mutual. Communication needs to flow both ways and regular assessments and tests are to be carried out to always check for holes, weaknesses and vulnerabilities in systems, applications and infrastructure.

The Overall Goal

All organisations, irrespective of their size and the markets they operate in want to reduce the risk of cyber attacks. Businesses want to protect their systems, data, infrastructure from unauthorised access and (obviously!) exploitation. Prevention of service disruption is another goal every business has. Finding the right cyber security partner is key to achieving peace of mind.

A security partner is required to assess, test and put forward recommendations covering: network security, application security (web / mobile), data and data storage (ex. Cloud) protection, systems security and infrastructure security. Advice about best of breed firewalls, anti-virus software, VPNs, malware defence, password and device management is expected. Various engagement models exist, with the most common ones being outsourcing and ongoing retainer-based arrangements. The concept of vCISO or as commonly referred to as fractional chief information security officer is gaining traction by the day.

Security breaches cause reputational damage, weaken customer confidence and trust and often lead to legal lawsuits. Compromised business critical systems can drive businesses out of business.

Choose a suitable partner that provides peace of mind.

Employing and retaining in-house expertise is increasingly becoming difficult because of the shortage of cyber security experts and their growing cost. Outsourcing is the solution. Select a provider that provides the level of security needed, even more if the regulator specifies the cybersecurity requirements.

From an external point of view, cybersecurity service providers look homogenous, so a deep dive into the methodologies and credentials of these providers needs to be carried out, as part of your selection process. Following are the main things you should look for when choosing your cybersecurity partner.

  • Understand the structure of the team behind the brand name. Certifications and the number of engineers, forming part of the team, are usually good indicators.
  • Choose a partner with well-defined procedures and good internal governance.
  • Check out and ask for case studies to verify their technical expertise.
  • Ensure they offer your organisation Managed Services, with SLAs congruent with your requirements (up to 24×7).
  • Go for a partner with extensive same-industry experience. They would be tried and tested with specific issues of the sector (you operate in).
  • Analyse their ability to integrate with your team and work as an extension of your internal department(s).
  • Confirm their ability to assist you on various projects including security awareness training and regular pen tests.
  • The prospective partner or provider should have great communication skills and champion a similar company culture. Intentions and company size should be complementary with yours.
  • The cyber security partner should well understand their role in the whole equation.

Cybergate International is relationship oriented and strives to have long lasting relationships with clients to help them up their cyber security – keeping hackers at bay!

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    Francesco Mifsud
    [email protected]

    I live and breathe cyber security and everything else in the discipline. With around a decade of experience in the industry I have had the opportunity to develop skills in penetration testing, cloud security, reverse engineering & exploit development, application security engineering, management and organisation-wide cyber security strategy. I hold a well-rounded set of security certifications such as OSCP, eWPTX and CISSP and have delivered training & workshops at some of the most prestigious hacking conferences such as DEF CON, BRU CON, BSides London and BSides Manchester.