For security professionals, it can be difficult to go to the decision-makers in a company and demand that a certain amount of money is spent on penetration testing. Rather, there must be justification for the expense, and the expenditure needs to ultimately contribute to the company’s profitability. If the decision-makers don’t understand the impact pen testing can have, they will never agree to the expense.
However, ROI from services like these is not always clear.
In order to justify the need for penetration testing, security professionals must qualify and quantify the “what” and the “why” of the service. This article will explore the potential returns an organization can expect from a penetration test.
An Investment vs. A Penalty
When making cybersecurity investments, an organization should always weigh the investments with a risk-based approach. Start by analyzing the cost of the most critical assets, the impact of losing those assets and the extended costs that an organization may face, such as a loss of business.
- What could the cost of a breach be to my organization?
- What would the cost of legal and regulatory penalties be in the event of a breach?
When making the decision to undergo penetration testing, it’s critical to note that the service will almost always be less costly to an organization than a breach.
You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know
Penetration testing helps you to identify the weaknesses and flaws in your infrastructure that you otherwise might not have known about. Without regularly conducting penetration testing, organizations cannot detect potential avenues of attack and safeguard against them.
Having an external organization conduct a penetration test can provide your team with new insights into their infrastructure and personnel, effectively preventing security complacency. After all, it’s hard to know what you don’t know; penetration testing can resolve this uncertainty.
Cybersecurity is becoming more of a business-driver than ever before. Nowadays, companies are aware of the importance of factoring cybersecurity and risk management into business decisions. Maintaining an effective vulnerability, risk and cybersecurity management program will therefore give you the competitive edge over your industry peers.
Making the business case for pen testing will allow your organization to understand the potential ROI from employing such services. A pen test should be seen as an investment for businesses looking to identify their risks and protect their most valuable data from breaches.