It may appear to the uneducated eye that there is little need to be concerned about security in a business’s IT systems. The truth is far more sinister. Businesses come under attack on the cyber front constantly and a good security system can mean the difference between losing all your customer data or financial data and having a satisfied, confident group of customers.
Security products fall into a wide range of categories – spam fighting systems, firewalls, anti-virus or malware, intrusion detection, and many more specialized products.
Security Software Buyer’s Guide
Modern businesses have more access to profit-boosting technology than ever before, but threats and security risks are also more rampant now that so much personal and professional data lives and breathes online.
News of security breaches and massive data losses is becoming more commonplace, and as a result, security software is becoming vital to protect your business from a whole host of security threats that exist online. There are many different types of threats and security risks that can negatively impact businesses, but there is also an array of security software systems designed to protect against all the known and developing risks lurking in cyberspace.
But how do you know what type of safeguards you need in place to protect your business, and how do you go about choosing the best security software vendors?
This guide will provide insight into the main types of security threats your business is facing and provide tips for selecting the best Security Software solution(s) for your protecting your company.
Types of Security Software
Security software, particularly for businesses, is a wide category with many options to protect against the different threats that could compromise your company. Additionally, since threats are always changing, so is the technology to protect against them. These factors make security solutions one of the most diverse software categories on the market.
Security software is available in integrated suites of tools, as well as one-off point solutions that you can implement to protect against certain threats or risks that may pertain to the types of systems you run or the industry in which your business operates.
Choosing security measures for your business is important to protecting your company and all the data you use every day to operate and compete, so the protections your company needs will be unique to your individual business and threats. Building up your security software tools may involve multiple solutions from the same vendor, or individual protections for certain aspect of your business, from various vendors.
However, there are some main types of security software every business should know about to ensure that all the important elements of the company are fully protected, including:
- Anti-Virus and Malware Protection
- Email Security
- Access Security and Management
- Traffic Threat Management
- Endpoint Security
- Threat Intelligence
Choosing the Security Software Solution (Or Solutions) You Need to Protect Your Business
You know that your business needs protections in place to stay safe in our digital age, but how do you know exactly which security software solutions will truly safeguard your company and the vital data and important assets you rely on to stay profitable and competitive?
In response to the prominence of security risks inherent to digital businesses, a wide array of security software solutions been developed to protect against all the known threats that exist. Understanding which protections you need in place, and then determining the best security software for your needs can be a bit overwhelming.
These tips will help you walk through the key steps of choosing the best security software options for your business.
Conduct a Business Review and Risk Analysis
Before you begin choosing your security solutions, it is a great idea to make a list of the specific business needs that are driving your decision to invest in security software. A key part of this process is doing a thorough risk analysis of your business to uncover weak points and account for any risks or threats your business (or current systems) might be prone to without proper protections in place.
Many companies find it helpful to include company leaders and key partners in their decision-making process of choosing security software. Including different people and vantage points will ensure that a wider spectrum of important needs is accounted for, which will help you choose a solution that contains all the security features and tools you must have to safeguard your business from threats.
Questions to Ask to Guide Your Review
- What security gaps exist, and how would a system breach impact your company?
- Are your existing security processes, tools, and systems outdated and cumbersome for employees?
- Are the costs of operating your existing manual processes or outdated technology outweighing the benefits you receive?
- What security tools and features are must-haves for your company? Which features aren’t as vital?
- What parts of your company need protection? (Mobile, Servers, Traffic, Email, Access, Etc)
- Will you need more than one type of security software solution to fully protect your business?
- What deployment method makes the most sense for our business and budget?
Build Your Security Software Budget
After you’ve conducted a complete risk analysis on your business, and have a strong understanding of your security software requirements, it is important to figure out the budget you can allocate toward implementing the systems you need to protect your business.
As you’re building your software budget, keep in mind that you may need to invest in several different types of security software to fully protect your business. There are many diverse threats which could impact your business, and software vendors typically offer specialized solutions for each different type of threat. It’s not uncommon to have several different security software systems in place to protect different parts of your business, from virus and malware protection to password management and content encryption. Many vendors do offer bundled suites of tools, so knowing exactly what protections you need will help you compare pricing and budget accordingly.
Determine Which Type of Security Software Technology Will Best Protect Your Company
Security software vendors typically offer an array of different technologies and deployment methods to best meet the size, budget, and security needs of your company. Cloud security systems are quickly becoming prevalent for companies of all sizes, particularly because system patches, upgrades, and updates can be done in real-time to ensure that the software is always completely updated against the most recent security threats.
However, there are also on-site security systems that larger companies may choose in conjunction with other on-site systems and servers their businesses rely upon.
Not sure what technology or deployment is for you? We can help!
Know What to Look for in Your Perfect Security Software Provider
As you meet with various security system providers that you’re interested in working with, you should do some due diligence in researching their reputation before you commit to purchasing their services. Some of the key things you should look for in your perfect security software provider are prominence, reviews, and support.
Industry prominence and popularity
While you should not choose a security software provider based on popularity alone, a vendor’s standing in the industry can signal what you can expect from their services. Make sure that the provider you select has prominence in the industry and is popular among other companies with similar needs as yours.
Reviews from current or past system users
One of the best ways you can easily research a security software provider you’re considering is to look for reviews given by current or past users. Reviews from current companies using the software can give you great insight into how the provider treats customers and how companies value their services and features. Past reviews can establish a history of service values and give you a snapshot into how the provider handles business over time as well.
Security Software Solution Support Offered
Support is a vital component that all security software vendors will offer. However, the types and degree of support will vary by vendor, so make sure you know what level of support your team will need, and then ensure your selected vendor can easily fulfil those support needs.
Understand Your Hardware Needs for Your Security System
If you choose to implement a cloud-based or hosted security solution, then you will not require any hardware to get your protections up and running quickly. However, if you’re going to be implementing a security solution on site, you’ll need to plan on investing upfront for hardware, installation, and ongoing maintenance on your system.
Stay Updated on New Security Risks and Trends in Technology to Combat Threats
Business trends and software trends have a symbiotic relationship much of the time, innovation in one area always drives change in the other. To stay current and competitive in your industry by embracing all the best tools for your business, you should regularly study trends surrounding the software solutions you use in your company.
Staying up to date on all the recent security threats and trends is especially important to protecting your business. Things change quickly in the security realm, and the vendors in this space are continually updating their systems to ensure protections against all the latest threats.
Research and Compare Multiple Security Software Vendors
Once you have a firm grasp on all the things you need to fully protect your business, then you can begin researching and comparing security software vendors.
There are many excellent security providers on the market, and you’ll undoubtedly be able to find your perfect system if you take a bit of time to really look into what each vendor offers and compare your top choices against one another to determine which is best for you and your business. Remember, you’re probably going to need several different types of protection in place to secure your business, and they may not all be offered by the same vendor.
Set up Demos and Get Pricing from Security Software Providers on Your Short List
Once you’ve created a short list of security software vendors that you’re interested in learning more about, it’s important to take your preparation and research one step further and get in touch with each vendor. Most vendors will happily set up meetings to discuss your security needs and requirements and can demonstrate all their key features for you.
Before you participate in a meeting or demo with a security provider, it is a great idea to provide your security concerns and insights gained from your risk analysis to the vendor prior to meeting, so they can put together the custom options and pricing they have available that will meet your needs. This will make your time much more efficient, and also give the vendor a clear understanding of exactly what you require.