Have you taken time to review your cybersecurity budget for 2024 yet? It’s no longer optional. Going without managed cybersecurity services that fit your organization’s unique needs can increase risk, negatively impact your reputation, and result in major fines and other costs related to data breaches.  

Going Without Cybersecurity Strategies Can Impact Your Bottom Line 

As we look forward to the new year, it’s important to look back at the past 12 months and take the security and IT lessons to heart.  

One such lesson entails 23andMe. The genetic testing company was hit by a security breach and proceeded to hide the true impact of the breach. They initially announced that the threat actor was only able to access roughly 14,000 accounts. However, what they failed to disclose was the fact that the attacker was also able to access data thanks to the DNA Relatives feature. Almost 7 million people may be affected! On top of this discrepancy, it’s possible 23andMe knew about the breach for at least two months before saying anything. 

The company is now facing a tarnished reputation and high costs. At the moment, the breach is expected to cost up to $2 million. The organization could face additional costs in the future, including fines. Although 23andMe is blaming reused user passwords as the weak link that caused the breach, there’s no denying that they’re facing an uphill battle with their reputation and could see their sales severely impacted. 

6 Steps To Define Your 2024 Budget With Managed Cybersecurity Services 

This is just one story from 2023 – there have been countless breaches in the past 12 months. Now is the time to get your business and your cybersecurity budget ready for the new year. Working with managed cybersecurity services can help you define a budget that fits you. Here are six steps to expect. 

 1. Assess Your Current IT Environment

Before anything else, companies should first conduct an assessment of their current IT infrastructure and environment with a cybersecurity services provider. This audit will help organizations identify what’s working, what isn’t, and where their gaps lie in their current strategy. It lays the groundwork for every other step. 

 2. Review Your Hardware

The managed IT services provider will also work with your company to define the physical components that make up the IT environment. This includes a review of data (sensitive and nonsensitive), software, hardware, and networks. The work done here gives the provider and the company a baseline of the current infrastructure to build upon. 

 3. Identify (and Plan for) Risks

After the initial assessments, the managed cybersecurity services provider can identify the risks the company is facing. This step allows the provider and the company to create a road map for the future and determine what exactly is needed to be better prepared for ransomware, malware, phishing, and other types of cyberattacks. Organizations will know exactly where their gaps are and where they need to focus their attention. 

In addition, industries change from year to year. Companies may be facing new risks or compliance requirements. 

 4. Estimate the Costs of Necessary Upgrades

Outdated technology could be costing you, and in particular, the break-fix model is expensive. If you tallied it up, how much does it really cost? Downtime and the lost productivity from slow software, hardware, and networks add up! Getting ahead of these problems can save you from headaches, reduce costs, and improve employee engagement and satisfaction.  

To get a handle on expected costs, ask – and determine the answer – to these questions: 

  • When should computers be replaced? 
  • Does the network meet our current demands? 
  • What software should be upgraded? 
  • What productivity walls are our employees facing? 
  • Are we taking advantage of the cloud? 

In particular, businesses should plan their move to the cloud if they haven’t already. If your company is on the fence, it’s time to consider the benefits – and Professional Computer Concepts can help. 

 5. Focus on Employee Training

Did you know that 88% of cyberattacks are due to human error 

Employees need to be aware of the latest tactics cybercriminals are using so they can keep your data and network secure. Training them what to look for, what to avoid, and what to do if they suspect an attack or a breach is essential.  

Phishing emails, in particular, are a weak point for many brands. Could your employees spot them all? 

Get the lowdown on phishing with our comprehensive guide right here 

 6. Build Your Budget for 2024

Now that you have a clear idea of where your business currently stands – and where you need to go – you can start to develop your budget with your priorities in mind. And companies should also be thinking to the future beyond 2024 by creating game plans to replace outdated technology, closing less pressing gaps, and other strategies that will keep breaches at bay. 

Managed cybersecurity services can be the difference-maker when it comes to stopping a data breach or cyberattack in its tracks. By working with Professional Computer Concepts, you can work with an experienced team who has your needs, goals, and budget in mind. 

Let’s talk and get your security budget ready for the new year. Contact us here!