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A good cybersecurity strategy can keep your organization safe, even in the face of digital threats. But even the wisest and most experienced entrepreneurs have blind spots preventing them from creating a robust security strategy.

How do you identify these blind spots and correct them?

Why Blind Spots Are So Important to Recognize

Let’s start by explaining why these cybersecurity blind spots are important to recognize.

First, it’s arguable that the biggest risk to your organization is the one you can’t see. If you know that an attack is a possibility, you can put specific security measures to thwart it in place. Depending on the specific threat, this could mean investing in tools like firewalls, training employees on best practices for security, or introducing a monitoring strategy to alert you whenever this threat is unfolding. Your blind spots open you to attacks you don’t see coming, so you have no prevention or mitigation strategy. Accordingly, these attacks hit harder and are much more difficult to recover.

Second, by definition, cybersecurity blind spots go unrecognized, oftentimes for years. No matter how robust the rest of your cybersecurity strategy is or how well your organization is performing, there may be security vulnerabilities capable of undermining all your best efforts.

How Cybersecurity Blind Spots Emerge

Where do these blind spots come from?

Usually, they arise from a multitude of factors, such as:

· General ignorance. Sometimes, business leaders simply don’t know what they’re doing. They may not see cybersecurity as a topic of importance or have a gross fundamental misunderstanding of which types of threats affect them. To many people, cybersecurity is a mystic art – and not something they’re capable of understanding. In reality, as long as you avoid technical jargon, most cybersecurity strategies are sensible and easy to understand.

· Unearned confidence. Some people are overconfident in their cybersecurity measures, believing themselves safe if they spend a certain amount of money every month or have a certain number of people on staff. However, some cybersecurity threats can be insidious and hard to identify. If you want to protect your organization, you must be constantly vigilant and look for stealthier threats.

· High assumptions of others. If you believe your employees are all educated and willing to practice cybersecurity best practices, you won’t worry about future threats to your organization. In reality, most people are lazy, uninformed, or both regarding cybersecurity topics. For example, 36 percent of consumers don’t regularly update or patch their software or operating systems. Additionally, 20 percent of consumers never back up their data to the cloud. If you’re not concentrating on educating your employees and motivating them, you’ve likely got a blind spot.

· Failure to learn and adapt. Finally, some blind spots emerge from a tendency to avoid learning and adapting. Cybersecurity strategies from 20 years ago no longer work well, as most cybercriminals have evolved beyond them. If you want your security to be robust, you must commit to ongoing learning and updating.

How to Identify and Repair Cybersecurity Blind Spots

So what steps can you take to identify and repair these cybersecurity blind spots?

· Work with a third-party team of experts. Working with a team of cybersecurity experts is always advantageous over trusting your instincts. Working with a third-party team can help you see your organization with a new set of eyes, eliminating some of your personal biases and allowing you to analyze things more objectively.

· Engage in penetration testing. Penetration testing is essentially a way of planning and executing a mock attack. White hat hackers will do whatever they can to get into your systems or launch a fake attack; if they’re successful, you’ll know you have at least some holes in your cybersecurity strategy. If they’re unsuccessful, you can be reasonably confident that you’re adequately protected.

· Comply with leading standards. Leading standards, like NIST and ISO, set an objective standard for organizational cybersecurity. If you doubt whether you do enough to keep your organization secure, consult these standards and compare.

· Employ ongoing monitoring. Monitoring can help you see how your strategies are performing – and alert you to possible attacks in progress.

· Stay up to date. Always stay plugged into the cybersecurity industry to stay updated on the latest threats.

Almost every organization currently has at least one blind spot in its cybersecurity strategy, even if that blind spot is a subtle and minimally impactful one. If you want to keep your organization and employees safe, it’s on you to acknowledge these potential blind spots, track them down, and correct them.