The rapid rate of change has business moving with a growing sense of urgency. The urgency applied to launching  business initiatives must also extend to cyber security – because the bad actors’ ability to compromise systems can easily outpace your ability to defend against an attack.

It’s critical, therefore, to accelerate your journey to an integrated security solution to reduce risk to your business. Here’s a framework for picking up the pace.

The purpose. Security experts first need a purpose to hasten the move to integrated security solutions. That purpose is managing risk. Risk management is commonplace for business leaders, but cyber risk has become a critical part of the broader discussion, because a cyber breach can impact all parts of your business – from operations to finance to brand reputation. The complexity of the digital enterprise – often comprising a web of interconnected suppliers and partners – increases vulnerabilities throughout the value chain.

Accelerating acquisition cycles, platforms, detection, response, resiliency – even culture change – is critical to limiting the advantage the attackers currently have. Cyber criminals can compromise systems in just a few minutes; detecting these attacks can take days, weeks, or even longer.

The destination. A sound business initiative is based on achievable outcomes. Security experts need to understand not only the purpose of their journey, but also the destination.

Any digital business initiative, whether it’s cloud, social, mobile, or IoT, should be built on four core security outcomes:

  • Neutralize threats: Having the ability to identify and mitigate an ever-evolving variety of malware, malware-less, application, and vulnerability exploitations.
  • Safeguard data: Protecting data whether it’s on premises, in the cloud, in use, at rest, or in motion.
  • Secure the cloud: Ensuring that infrastructure and applications are protected in private data centers and the cloud.
  • Optimize operations: Gaining visibility across the security infrastructure and using automation, orchestration, analytics, intelligence, and data management to respond and adapt quickly.

The map. There are many pathways to an integrated security solution. From an operational perspective, your roadmap should be threat driven and business aligned.

While one option is to buy low-cost technology solutions to ensure compliance with regulatory guidelines, you may find greater ROI in adopting best-of-breed technologies that function within an interoperable framework. This allows your enterprise to adapt and evolve with threats over time.

The transport. What is the right platform to achieve the outcomes? Because you need to protect across multiple threat services, detect instances, and correct them quickly, you must be able to use your integrated solutions to respond to and/or contain a problem, adapt as you work through the problem, and apply what you’ve learned so that you can prepare for the next threat.

An integrated security platform’s key protection requirement is to mitigate threats, which requires interoperability and the ability to provide or consume intelligence. The key to stopping emerging threats and making faster decisions is analytics, intelligence, and orchestration, so the platform should solve multiple problems and produce actionable information.

The value. Define what you will gain through these investments. The answer may be better efficiency, stronger security, cost savings, more visibility, or speed. By identifying the value of accelerating your platform, you can better align with business goals.

Integrated security solutions are an important part of a holistic security strategy designed to improve effectiveness, increase efficiency, and provide the speed you need to keep pace with the bad actors.