How to Measure Cybersecurity Effectiveness ー Before It's Too Late

by Brad Garland

Here at Vala Secure, we’re not fans of fear mongering. For us, cybersecurity and the threat of hacks or breaches are part of the reality of doing business today. That’s not to say we don’t take them seriously –– we consider ourselves your guide as you navigate those ever-murky cybersecurity waters. If we can help you take action to protect your customers, employees, and your business, then we’ve done our jobs!

While the headlines focus on scare tactics, we deal in real, concrete action to protect your business from threats. Cybersecurity threats today come with several names, and can come from many different places. Things like breaches, hacks, terrorist attacks, natural disasters, or even attempts by employees to steal information from your company are all, unfortunately, realistic possibilities for every business today.

So, how do you measure cybersecurity efforts?

When we speak with businesses that want to prevent cybersecurity issues, in many cases they approach us because they have had some sort of incident (falling under one of those risks I named above).

In other words, they came to us after it was too late to prevent the issue -- but it’s never too late to protect your business, starting now!

Here are two main keys we follow to measure cybersecurity effectiveness and help keep Vala Secure clients safe:


1. We provide continuous cybersecurity testing.

Of course, the most literal (and in our opinion, shaky) way to know that your cybersecurity efforts are working is if….you don’t have any breaches, hacks, or otherwise damaging incidents. Or if you’re in a regulated industry, not having any compliance issues. Probably unsurprisingly, we don’t advocate this method for ongoing measurement of your cybersecurity effectiveness. That’s because when something happens, as we noted above,’s too late.

While we never want to scare you into cybersecurity testing, truly the best way to ensure your cybersecurity efforts are working is to continuously test and audit them. If the good guys (like Vala Secure!) are constantly bombarding your shields to try and get in, any holes or dings in your armor can be addressed and fixed before the bad guys try to do the same (with much more nefarious intentions).

We follow a straightforward cyclical pattern when protecting our clients that includes:

  • Identify any risks
  • Take steps to protect against those risks
  • Monitor and detect any threats
  • Recover from any challenges

And then back to identify, continuing around the cycle for continuous protection.


2. We use the most cutting-edge tools.

Hackers and ne’er do wells are getting craftier every day. In order to stay ahead of the game and outsmart them, it’s critical that we use the most cutting-edge tools to prove your strategy is working.

There are a range of tools and software out there to test cybersecurity effectiveness, and the current slate of tools can change rapidly -- consider the tools I’m about to mention a snapshot in time. Although they are constantly updating and evolving to meet new standards, our specific toolset may change as threats change.

Right now, for example, we are using tools like Kalie, Nessus, and Metasploit to test network security effectiveness. A tool like KnowBe4 helps us test employee effectiveness against phishing emails. And our audits are conducted against regulatory standards like NIST and/or FFIEC to demonstrate organizational security effectiveness.

Now what?

Wherever you stand on your journey toward cybersecurity effectiveness, it’s important to understand that there’s no silver bullet. It’s important to be open and realistic when it comes to your cybersecurity effectiveness. By reading this post and taking some action to understand, protect, keep learning, and keep trying to protect your business in an always-changing security landscape, you are already way ahead of the pack.

To take the extra step toward cybersecurity effectiveness for your organization, give us a call to talk more about your business and its goals. We’re here to help!