Cyber governance – the challenges of interoperability


Graham Croock | Director | CyriskCo Advisory | mail me |

Information has undoubtedly become one of the most valuable assets for organisations, and whose dependence on it is constantly rising. At the same time, the frequency, sophistication and ferocity of cyberattacks are also increasing, posing a significant threat to business environments.

Cybersecurity system interoperability is a subject that most competitive cybersecurity companies continue to treat as an inconvenient nuisance instead of an absolute necessity for enhanced and adequate defence in depth. In today’s connected world, businesses have no option but to retain visibility of emerging and evolving threats and defend their interconnected systems against a wide range of adversaries with various levels of motivations, capabilities and access to resources.

The changing landscape

The rapid rate of increased connectivity and interoperability between systems within businesses, the spread of poorly secured ‘Internet of Things (IoT), AI-enabled hacking tools, and cybercrime-as-a-service intensifies the competition between the defenders and attackers.

The requirement for adequate and appropriate ‘Defence in depth’ drives business to build and deploy multiple types and layers of defences, resorting to various products and services developed by different cybersecurity vendors and service providers.

Reliance complexity and multiplicity

This complex mixture of cybersecurity products and services creates and amplifies the interoperability problems that work against the efficient use of these ordinarily practical tools.

As the pace of cyberattacks accelerates, businesses are forced to place less reliance on manual threat analysis and response. They are forced to place increased reliance on automated real-time solutions. These ‘solutions’ depend on a multiplicity of tools intended to provide ‘defence in depth’, which invariably end up providing contradictory information, leaving ICT security compromised and the security team members languishing without interoperable solutions and increased risk of attack.

Integrating different products and services across interconnected systems is a significant challenge for ICT security teams. As and when new tools, products and services, which are unable to communicate with each other, and other existing platforms are introduced, it becomes increasingly difficult to effectively understand and manage the cyber threat landscape. Security systems fail or are rendered ineffective when they are not fed quality data with sound integrity on a timely basis from complementary and interoperable systems.

Even with an expert staff and all the latest tools, security teams will continue to face challenges if security architectures continue to resist integration and cybersecurity system interoperability.

Cyber Threat Information and Intelligence (CTII) and possible solutions

Industry experts accept that Cyber Threat Intelligence (CTI) contributes significantly to 

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Read the full article by Graham Croock, Director, CyriskCo Advisoryas well as a host of other topical management articles written by professionals, consultants and academics in the June/July 2021 edition of BusinessBrief.

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