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Karen Cohen

By: Karen Cohen on March 15, 2023

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Why Businesses Must Budget For IT Security (& How Much)

Cybersecurity | Managed Services

Editor's note: This article was originally posted in 2018, but has been updated to include more relevant information.

As technology becomes more enmeshed in society and in business success, IT security threats continue to evolve. As a result, updated cybersecurity tools and defenses continue to be important elements in the security of data and networks for every organization.

Whether you rely on an internal or external IT team, it's critical that you protect your network and data. Making sufficient, proactive investments in security will help protect your business from cyber criminals and expensive down time.

At Kelser, we provide a comprehensive, proactive suite of cybersecurity tools as part of our managed IT support offering, so we know the role these tools can play in keeping your business safe. But, we also know that managed IT isn't the right solution for every organization. 

In this article, we'll explore 4 reasons why it's important to budget appropriately for IT security and how much to set aside (as well as factors that can influence cost) to ensure that your tools are up to the latest threat vectors.

Whether you work with us or not, we want you to have the information you need to keep your organization ahead of the latest threats. 

4 Reasons To Include Cybersecurity In Your IT Budget

Cybersecurity is important for a lot of reasons. Here are 4 to consider:

1. Keep Customer Information Safe

Trust is something nobody takes for granted. As a business leader, you have a sacred trust to protect the information your customers entrust to you

Whether it's personal or financial information, keeping it protected is vital.

2. Keep Business Information Safe

From intellectual property to competition-sensitive data, companies have sensitive information that is vital to their success. 

The first step for any organization is to identify the most critical information and erect layers of security around it.

For example, you may have a perimeter firewall that protects your entire network, but you can also build in layers of security to protect information with different levels of sensitivity. 

Related article: Firewalls: What You Need To Know (Function, Features, Capabilities)

3. Security Incidents Are Expensive

A quick internet search indicates that the global cost of cyberattacks will reach $8 trillion in 2023 and expectations are that  number will surge to $10.5 trillion by 2025

First, your business will likely experience downtime because your data may be inaccessible. Downtime means that the normal operations of the business are not happening, meaning you are losing profit.

Secondly, it will cost time and money to determine and repair the root cause of the breach. Proactive investment in cybersecurity can help you avoid these cost and inconvenience of an incident.

And, cybercrime can affect a business for years after the initial attack occurs. The costs associated with cyber attacks -- lawsuits, insurance rate hikes, criminal investigations, and reputational damage -- can even put a company out of business. 

4. Regulatory Requirements

Customers and government agencies have cybersecurity requirements outlined in their contracts. Whether you need to meet HIPAA requirements, NIST 800-171, CMMC, or credit card regulations, cybersecurity is a critical component of your organization's success.  

How Much Should You Budget For Cybersecurity? 

A quick internet search shows that most small and medium-sized businesses plan to spend 10 percent of their overall IT budget on cybersecurity. 

Factors That Affect Cybersecurity Cost

There are numerous things that can affect your cybersecurity cost including: 

1. Size

If you own a small, local business in which you have less than 5 employees who all work at one facility, your cybersecurity costs will be less than a large, multi-national corporation with multiple sites and remote workers. 

2. Industry & Risk

Banks and other international financial institutions or government contractors will require more layers of security than a mom and shop pizza place that processes credit cards. Both need security, but the complexity and layers required will be different.

3. The Age & Complexity Of Your Infrastructure

If your network is old or your devices are no longer in warranty, you will likely need to invest some money to bring your infrastructure to current standards.

As the threats change, the technology is adapted to combat the latest tactics. What was state-of-the-art two years ago (or two months ago) may no longer be enough. 

4. Compliance

As mentioned above, contractual obligations often demand certain cybersecurity tools or policies. Make sure you know what your contracts call for and if you have questions, ask your customer because you are ultimately responsible for meeting the contractual obligations. 

Related article: Continuous Compliance: 6 Steps To Stay Ahead (NIST & More)

Where Do You Go From Here? 

After reading this article, you know 4 reasons to include cybersecurity in your IT budget, how much you should budget, and 4 factors that will affect your cybersecurity costs. 

At this point you may be wondering what cybersecurity gaps exist within your organization

Click the button below to download a free checklist that will help you identify your organization's gaps and take steps toward addressing them. Learn 5 best practices and actions you must take to protect your business from the latest cyber threats. Use this checklist to:

✔️Understand where your organization's cybersecurity policy needs improving
✔️Learn actions you can take to keep your organization's data secure
✔️Help ensure your organization follows the latest cybersecurity best practices

Get Your Cybersecurity Checklist

You may have an internal IT staff that can help you address your gaps or you may be considering working with an external IT support provider. Learn your options for external IT support

We provide comprehensive managed IT support for companies in Connecticut and beyond. We know managed IT isn't the right solution for every organization, but if you find yourself wondering about managed IT support services, we encourage you to explore several options to make sure you get the right fit for you. 

Or, if you're ready to talk to a person about whether managed IT might be a good solution for your organization, click the button below and we'll set up a call to see if we are a good fit to work together. 

Talk with a Human

If you prefer to self-assess, click on the link below for a free managed IT checklist. This checklist will help you:

✔️Evaluate your current IT infrastructure and processes
✔️Identify current IT gaps 
✔️Ensure that your organization has the technology it needs to be successful

Get Your Managed IT Support Checklist


About Karen Cohen

Karen brings unending curiosity to her role as Kelser's Content Manager. If you have a question, she wants to know the answer.

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