The Big Data aggregation models deployed on the enterprise level have given unprecedented insight into consumer behaviors. A modern IOT device can access a user's location, search data, voice commands, and additional data points to build dynamic CRM for large demographics. However, the cyberinfrastructure of corporations has become increasingly vulnerable to digital risks such as ransomware, out-of-date server patching, and organizational missteps.

The data breaches cost enterprises $ 4.35 million, according to the latest annual report by IBM. [1] Many IT experts have admitted to a lack of confidence in Data Breach Preparedness and mitigating the interception. A wave of international compliance regulations has caused a new re-examining of the tenets of privacy and cybersecurity, serving the clients and stakeholders more holistically.

This blog goes over the key differences, the growing interdependence of privacy and cybersecurity, and a robust compliance policy rooting out digital risks.

Key Differences between Privacy and Cybersecurity

Before privacy and cybersecurity are often mischaracterized without fully understanding the layers involved within each topic, it is essential first to assess their differences. Privacy as a field focuses singularly on ensuring that the user's data is protected in the way it is stored, collected, processed, and distributed to third parties. The fundamental goal is to ensure that no misuse and malignant actors use it to the detriment of the end user.

Privacy gives weightage to the security issue more from the lens of ethics rather than purely from a technical standpoint. Cybersecurity primarily focuses on protecting the data from being intercepted by hackers or leaked to an unauthorized source. Tools like encryption, biometric passwords, and access control are the primary ways it protects data. The issue of security is purely dealt with from a technical standpoint with some ethical limitations.

Significant Cybersecurity is Not Equal to Privacy.

In the enterprise market, for the longest time, cyber security was the key focus, and privacy was overlooked with a lack of proper data management. In reality, privacy policies for core data and outflow of data to third-party vendors lead to significantly more breach risks regardless of robust Cyber Security protocols in check. Henceforth enterprise needs to approach the granular dataset to how privacy policies are devised for managing extensive client data.

Data Anonymization, Storage, lifecycle, and K-Anonymity are all strong privacy-oriented security that must deploy alongside cybersecurity policies. Every DPO must characterize data sets according to their sensitivity to stakeholders and clients and build a Privacy Information Management Strategy (PIMS) accordingly. Adopting ISO 27701 and 27032 certifications is vital in building processes that reciprocate trust, security, and risk mitigation in large organizations.

Eliminating Breach Risks Across the Chain

Organizationally privacy management and cybersecurity are distributed between two separate units working in synchronization to serve the larger goals. In the event of a breach in the cybersecurity network, the incursion can occur in many ways that extend beyond the scope of the Chief Information Security Officer (CISO).

According to the latest Ponemon Institute Research Report, 53 percent of IT experts have admitted that they do not fully grasp how well the security protocols function. Furthermore, only 41 percent believe in the efficacy of security teams in closing significant potential gaps. [2].

Human factors such as misplaced credentials, user error when handling security protocols, or leaving data vulnerable due to RBAC issues continue to be the weakest link. Merging the privacy and cybersecurity teams can have the following potential upsides to reducing the increasing digital risks.

  • Avoid Siloed Security- Hacker teams' attacks on IT infrastructure are incredibly sophisticated, with large attacking surfaces. Maintaining a siloed approach causes latency, reduces the collective organizational strength, and leads to hefty fines for failing to adhere to compliance policies. A merging of teams provides greater bandwidth to security teams to detect, address and resolve breaches swiftly.
  • Consistent Security Protocols- Privacy and cybersecurity protocols are interrelated but can have friction that causes conflict within the organizational units. For example, De-Anonymization is a crucial feature of the GDPR to protect the identity of the users from malicious intent. However, the critical challenge of processing the data through the prism of such a protocol can cause challenges for the cybersecurity team to ensure its utility is still intact. A cohesive unit can better address scenarios where there is an overlap between cybersecurity and privacy.
  • Forward Thinking Approach- Both these fields are ever-evolving in nature, and there is a constant need to relearn, evaluate and rethink the existing security protocols in the enterprise. Moving forward, having an integrated approach will help organizations become better adept at managing new security challenges.
  • Established Continuous Compliance- In the post-GDPR era, enterprises have welcomed and adopted compliance across various departments. However, it is essential to note that the privacy framework issued by the EU is akin to a decision-making protocol rather than a tick on a box. Cybersecurity is crucial in ensuring that data remains secure at rest or in transit through the structure. The two systems' interdependence is essential in avoiding scenarios where an employee is given more privilege than required.

Proper execution of both the tenets ensures that stakeholders are not levied non-compliance fines and promotes strong trust from clients.

Conclusion

Security in the digital world is a growing and evolving subject, with regulators, politicians, IT experts, and regular citizens making their voices heard. The pressure on enterprises to meet the high bar of privacy and greater cybersecurity is a requirement, not a request, in the current climate. The way companies manage and approach crisis management has to evolve with better tools, investment in AI to better weed out false negatives, and better organizational structuring.

New forms of collaboration between the privacy and cybersecurity teams must be encouraged and explored to avoid significant future Data Breaches. Enterprises that scale with tenets of security are bound to be far less likely to lose their reputation than those with half-baked security measures, having no understanding of the various dimensions between privacy and cybersecurity.

References

[1] How much does a data breach cost in 2022? https://ibm.co/3e9AZCf.

[2] The Cybersecurity Illusion: The Emperor Has No Clothes https://bit.ly/3Tqw9kl.