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Cybersecurity: How to Avoid the Economics of Desperation

By Archis Gore
Stethoscope with money

We’re not even through the first quarter of 2020 and already it looks like we are in for a record-breaking year from a cybersecurity perspective. Data breaches and security hacks are constantly in the news. And that’s off the back of 2019, that up till now, was the worst ever with over 15 billion data records being exposed. That’s a massive increase of 284% over the previous year.

Just to add a little extra context, over 38 million US healthcare records were hacked in the first 10 months of 2019. That means nearly 12% of the entire US population had their personal information exposed. That’s a huge concern. But it’s also a link to a topic I find particularly vexing – the unpalatable economic models and pricing practices often adopted by both the cybersecurity and healthcare industries.

Let me explain…

When it comes to healthcare and medicine, the crucial question is “how much is your life worth?” Or to put it another way, “how much would you pay to solve a life-threatening health problem?” The answer is obvious. If there’s a cure, you’d pay whatever it costs, right? Or as much as you can afford. And that’s what frequently dictates how much you get charged for healthcare or medicine. Treatments can be expensive – even extortionate – because you are desperate. It’s the plain, brutal economics of a seller’s market.

The situation is similar when it comes to cybersecurity.

The cost of recovering from a hack or data breach can be excruciatingly expensive. The critical question now is “how much is the future of your business worth?” That’s no exaggeration. The reputational damage, lost business impact, and remediation costs could spell the end for some organizations. And that’s what will dictate how much you get charged for cybersecurity forensics, data recovery experts and other services in such dire circumstances. Frankly, you’ll end up paying whatever it takes, because at this stage, there’s simply no alternative.

How to alter the economic equation to your advantage

I hinted at the answer to this question in my last blog under the theme “Prevention is better than a Cure.”  Frankly, this changes the whole perspective. Focusing on prevention morphs the situation into a buyers market where you are no longer being held hostage. It takes away the feelings of desperation, allowing time to shop around and room for negotiation. Suddenly, you are in control again.

Let’s go back to our healthcare scenario. Preventative measures might include vaccination, suitable insurance, good exercise, a healthy lifestyle, and other proactive steps. This approach and these services aren’t more affordable only because they are simpler. They are less expensive because you have a choice of suppliers, you can compare alternatives, and you can haggle for the best deal.

The same holds true from a cybersecurity perspective. Taking preventative action means that you’re no longer being held over a barrel. You have the time and opportunity to plan the multi-layered cybersecurity strategy that’s right for your organization. But better still, you have the freedom to choose who to partner with, how to bargain and where to get the best deal.

There’s one other thing to consider. We tend to think that cybersecurity is mainly about defense. In most sports, the most successful teams employ a good mix of both defense and attack. The same is true with cybersecurity. Building in some offensive measures will make the hacker’s life far more difficult. It moves all the pain and effort back into their court.

That’s where Polyverse is different. Our preventative cybersecurity portfolio, including Polymorphing for Linux and Polyscripting, tip the economics equation back in your favor. Even better, they help you to go on the offensive, making it unbearably difficult and virtually impossible for hackers to do their job.

That’s the kind of strategy and tactics that appeal to me.

If you feel the same way, why not give us a call to talk about your specific requirements.


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