Are you missing a major potential financial benefit in the form of cybersecurity tool consolidation?
Enterprise cybersecurity is one area where businesses can’t afford to skimp, but the costs involved with keeping up with a constantly evolving threatscape can spiral. By the time you’ve put together a set of tools from multiple vendors across multiple network environments, it may feel as though you’re wading through a confusing, disjointed maze. Ultimately, it may feel as though your significant financial investments aren’t paying off.
This feels especially true when attacks like ransomware are on the rise — Sophos reports that ransomware impacted 66% of organizations in 2021, an increase of nearly 80% over the prior year — even while cybersecurity spending keeps increasing. Gartner estimates that spending on information security and risk management topped $172 billion in 2022 (up from $155 billion in 2021 and $137 in 2020).
One way to knock down costs at an enterprise level is tool consolidation — this guide can serve as your roadmap for getting started.
What is cybersecurity tool consolidation?
Let’s define cybersecurity tool consolidation as “merging together the capabilities of disparate tools used to monitor network behavior and mitigate and prevent threats.” It’s a way to simplify security infrastructure by identifying and eliminating redundant or unnecessary tools.
One approach to cybersecurity tool consolidation is to select a single vendor that can provide multiple tools accessible through a single access point. Another option is to seek out options for integrating existing systems so that they work together more seamlessly.
Cybersecurity tool consolidation benefits
There are three primary benefits enterprises can expect when consolidating their cybersecurity tools:
- Cost savings
- Improved security posture
- Simplified management
1. Cost savings
As one example, Forbes reports that managed service providers save an estimated $230,000 annually when they consolidate their cybersecurity, backup and disaster recovery services. It makes sense – by reducing the number of vendors and service providers you work with, you’ll save on manpower, training costs, maintenance and more. Fewer contracts with vendors means less time on the phone dealing with annual negotiations and sales calls, too.
2. Improved security posture
A more comprehensive view of your network infrastructure can prove invaluable when it comes to your security posture. When you consolidate, you can identify (and fill) gaps in your security stack. That’s why Gartner predicts consolidated security platforms are the future in 2022 and beyond.
3. Simplified management
Your security analysts can spend their time more efficiently when they don’t need to bounce between systems and platforms trying to get a handle on your overall security posture. And, when something does seem amiss, your team will be better prepared to spring into action.
How to consolidate your cybersecurity tools
As a good best practice, you’re likely already evaluating your security approach on a regular basis. The process for consolidating your cybersecurity solutions incorporates this task with an eye toward reducing redundancies and reaching a more comprehensive, overarching plan.
Here are six steps you can follow to start your consolidation:
- Audit your security stack. Create a list of the cybersecurity tools you’re currently using — include items like firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and antivirus software.
- Identify redundant tools. Review your list for tools that provide overlapping functionality. Do you have multiple firewalls covering the same assets? Consider whether you can eliminate those that are less effective.
- Evaluate your remaining tools. Take a hard look at each tool and consider your current security needs, which may have evolved over time. Do you have any outdated tools in the mix? Any that just aren’t up to the job now that your enterprise has grown? Out with the old!
- Consider vendors with multiple capabilities. Venture into the current marketplace to evaluate vendors offering comprehensive security solutions with multiple capabilities.
- Investigate integration options. Do you prefer to keep using multiple tools? Seek out integration solutions. These specialized software (and sometimes, hardware) offerings can help your current tools work together more seamlessly. That means fewer manual workarounds and quicker incident response capabilities.
- Implement the changes. You may need to take steps like canceling contracts, updating security configurations, and retraining your operations team.
Cybersecurity tool consolidation is a smart move for enterprises working with multiple tools. Whether you opt for a single vendor solution or invest in integration tools, you’ll benefit from cost savings and a better overall security posture. As you move through the process, remember to track and measure outcomes related to costs, incident response time and other metrics to validate the success of your consolidation effort.
Remember, cybersecurity tool optimization is an ongoing process — it’s essential to routinely audit and update your security stack in order to stay ahead of today’s ever-smarter cyber criminals.MixMode can help you with cybersecurity tool consolidation. Learn more and set up a demo today.