Whenever I speak about IT security vendor consolidation, I am encountered by confusion-ridden looks from the business fraternity. Businesses are grappling with the challenge of selecting an appropriate security vendor(s) in such an ever-changing IT environment — zero-ing on single vendor’s capabilities does not appear to be the right approach!
Information technology has come a long way, and the development has been paralleled with security considerations. For each IT capability there is a security layer to top it up with. Multiple vendors support is like multiple mini IT Security workshops, running 24×7, following their own innovative trouble shooting when a threat comes by as businesses grapple with the challenge of maintaining smooth work operations.
In addition, businesses and IT systems are integrating fast, and this partly leads to creation of loopholes. With integration of businesses, many mini IT security workshops end up doing the same tasks for different capabilities. It is correct to say that a range of IT Security vendors bring added cost, redundancy and duplicity to tasks that could be consolidated, monitored and conducted at scale.
Organizations, therefore, are encouraged to consolidate multiple security vendors into minimal vendor base to handle all IT security requirements. However simple it sounds, the vendor consolidation effort needs to scrap a lot of processes and bring simplification while ensuring that the systems are not compromised at any point.
Important Takeaways When Considering Single Endpoint Security Vendor
Integrating Security in Enterprise IT Setup
Flexibility to adapt to changing threat landscape and new regulations. Traditional IT organizations have for years provided “checkbox compliance,” which sadly is not fully integrated with the requirements of regulations, such as Sarbanes-Oxley. Further, such entities have mostly offered short-sighted cyber-solutions that resulted in costly data breaches. With the increase in business-critical data and enterprises moving to the cloud, cyber security providers are required to implement regulatory standards and cyber security measures in an enterprise IT System, infrastructure and processes.
Moving Beyond the vanilla model of IAM to provision and enforce employee access
Identity and access management (IAM) should not just stop at provisioning and enforcing employee access to various corporate systems and apps. Cybersecurity needs to extend to other varied users as well, including employees, partners, stakeholders, customers and third-party vendors, and that too without impacting the user experience. Also, security vendors must ensure that their solutions could be implemented across hybrid environment, and allowing users to securely access corporate systems from different devices.
Address security fatigue among enterprises
CIOs and CSOs are constantly facing new security threats and regulatory compliance requirements, and are often forced to engage with multiple IT vendors to address the issues. This has resulted in the setting of security fatigue among enterprises, who are now constantly seeking to consolidate around a few vendors providing endpoint security. A vendor enabling enterprises to integrate solutions and optimize IT investments would be the preferred partner for organizations going forward.
Do not ignore security over cloud
With increasing needs of virtualization, storage on clouds has become a growing trend, resulting in increasing security threats too. While traditional IT vendors are seen to deliver end products, including storage on clouds, they often are not fully able to deliver endpoint security or provide proactive cloud-based security. This gap area is being easily addressed by cybersecurity vendors.
With growing focus on cybersecurity, IT organizations are seen to spin it as a separate corporate entity as well. While the Corporate IT division might focus on providing services such as infrastructure and critical business applications, the cybersecurity division helps in mitigating risks across services, apps and user identities. Enterprises may consider engaging with specialized cybersecurity divisions as well in near future.
Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in this guest author blog are solely those of the contributor, and do not necessarily reflect those of Centrify.
Learn more about vendor consolidation in the cybersecurity industry here.