The world is getting more and more digitized by the day.
From enterprise companies to small businesses to the general public, we are all gradually becoming dependent on digital assets for everyday work and activities.
A proactive solution called Digital Risk Protection (DRP) is emerging to counter these escalating digital security risks.
DRP is a comprehensive and evolving process designed to safeguard digital resources from a wide range of potential threats.
In modern organizations, implementing a robust DRP strategy has become imperative to protect valuable digital assets that companies rely on to drive business growth and revenue generation.
In this article, we delve deeper into the specifics and significance of Digital Risk Protection.
What Are Digital Risks?
Digital risks are threats an organization faces due to its digital transformation and the implementation of technology resources. These risks can lead to operational, reputational, and financial damages associated with using digital tools.
Cyberthreats can originate from diverse sources, often – but not always – coming from the deep or the dark web. These threats often exploit vulnerabilities and faulty configurations within an organization’s digital infrastructure.
As technology evolves, these risks become increasingly complex and challenging to manage.
How Do Digital Risks Occur?
Digital risks arise through various channels and manifest in different forms, presenting unique threats to organizations.
- Operational Disruption Through Cyber Threats
The digital landscape is highly susceptible to cyber threats, encompassing vulnerabilities in software, malware, ransomware, and phishing attacks, and poses significant risks to the digital transformation efforts of businesses, often leading to operational disruptions.
The global pandemic in 2020 accelerated the adoption of remote work in large companies, significantly increasing their reliance on digital assets.
However, this increased digital presence has also resulted in a surge in cyberattacks targeting businesses, exploiting the amplified attack surface brought about by the shift to remote work.
- Reputational Damage
Cybercriminals may use social media profiles or hack websites to misrepresent a company or brand with false information or viruses, negatively impacting the business’s trustworthiness in the public’s eyes.
- Compliance Risk
Digital transformation can also give rise to compliance risks for organizations when new technologies and tools are implemented without adhering to industry standards – especially in broad cross-border markets.
- Financial Damage
The most significant threat to any company is often related to finance. Before digitizing internal operations, companies must carefully assess the financial risks associated with the transformation. An organization failing to operate correctly during this process can jeopardize its stable customer base.
Moreover, if hackers gain access to a digital system that stores or processes a company’s financial data, it can result in substantial monetary losses.
Understanding Digital Risk Protection (DRP)
Digital Risk Protection is a comprehensive process designed to safeguard an organization’s digital assets. It involves employing methods to protect the organization’s digital infrastructure from various cyber threats, including unauthorized access, malware, phishing attacks, data loss, and more.
In essence, DRP is a proactive approach to defend organizations against the ever-growing landscape of digital threats.
Importance of Digital Risk Protection
Investing in a security system for the business premises is always advisable. However, allocating resources for Digital Risk Protection (DRP) is essential, especially when transitioning to a digital infrastructure or incorporating digital resources.
DRP protects organizations from cyber threats and expensive penalty charges. Moreover, it ensures the smooth and proper functioning of the new digital infrastructure and technologies.
Roles of DRP
Some of the most common and critical roles of DRP are discussed below:
- Digital Footprint Mapping
Every action undertaken by an organization in the realm of technology or connected services contributes to its digital footprint.
To ensure the secure transformation of the entire business infrastructure during digitalization, it becomes imperative to have a clear and detailed picture of all digital assets. This process is referred to as digital footprint mapping.
Organizations can effectively discover and map all their digital assets by utilizing digital footprint mapping. This enables them to understand potential threats comprehensively and facilitates efficient monitoring of these assets.
Such digital assets may include open ports, cloud storage systems with misconfigurations, and software vulnerabilities, commonly known as the attack surface.
Additionally, a digital footprint map can help identify and track attacks originating from third-party vendors operating through a service level agreement (SLA).
- Threat Monitoring
The ever-evolving digital landscape introduces new threats continuously. However, with the capabilities of DRP, potential data breaches or cyberattacks can be detected before they occur.
To achieve this, DRPs diligently monitor all layers of the company’s digital system model. Central to this monitoring process is vulnerability prioritization. Effectively prioritizing vulnerabilities is crucial because distinguishing between low-risk and high-risk situations becomes challenging when numerous notifications or flags are assigned the same priority.
DRPs excel in scanning the digital infrastructure to monitor the external digital world that the organization deals with, including the surface web, the deep web, and the dark web.
- Risk Mitigation
With a system to identify and monitor threats, some digital risk mitigation is also required that can help with the speed of response.
This task is done by utilizing automated technology, which can quickly alert network security teams.
Other tools, like browser-blocking, takedown APIs, and killswitches, can all help to stop threats from occurring or mitigate against damage.
- Maintaining Protection
Analysis and reporting are needed for all established systems, letting security teams and business leaders know the areas they need to improve.
Prevention with Digital Risk Protection (DRP)
Below are some of the common steps taken in DRP solutions to prevent digital risks:
- Humans are the primary causes of risks! One form of protection may be the rise of AI tools that can prevent malicious emails before they enter employees’ inboxes.But companies must still train their workforce to be vigilant of cybersecurity issues and be taught to be cautious and alert to phishing attacks, data leaks, and similar threats.
- Third-party vendors are essential to most organizations’ digital businesses, but reducing the risk they pose to your company is another step in keeping your data safe.Risk assessment is essential to know how an external organization’s risk factors may affect your business.
- For cloud solution companies, consistent risk assessments are needed in their ecosystem, along with vetting the potential risks of working with third-party vendors.
Why Is DRP Needed for Companies?
- Reducing Digital Risks: Implementing appropriate security policies and infrastructure helps companies minimize digital risks, safeguarding their assets, data, and operations from cyber threats.
- Compliance and Data Protection: DRP is crucial to ensure compliance with data protection regulations, avoiding potential penalty charges for non-compliance, especially concerning customer data protection.
- Added Security Layer: DRP solutions provide an extra layer of security to the digitalized business processes and the critical aspects of a company’s daily operations. This additional protection helps organizations that heavily rely on technological tools.
- Protecting Public Image: Maintaining a positive public image is essential for any business. Taking proactive steps to protect users and customers from cyberattacks demonstrates a commitment to security. On the other hand, any carelessness that leads to data loss or security breaches can erode public trust and reputation.
As any business expands and relies more on digital assets, the risk of cybercrime also escalates.
Safeguarding the security of systems and protecting customer data and employees are paramount concerns.
Investing in a dependable DRP solution is an essential step for securing the future of the business – and may be an extremely valuable move.