Cyber defense

Why aren’t CISOs satisfied with their cyber defense plans?

The relentless pace of cyberattacks in 2022 showed no signs of slowing down, leaving security leaders challenged to defend against an array of sophisticated threats in 2023. With global political instability and the quick payday available to cyber criminals, nation-state-grade attacks are the biggest concern.

Our data indicates that Ransomware will return this year in more dangerous forms and extend its targets to non-traditional technologies, like smart cars and cities. As businesses increasingly adopt digital transformations and new technologies, they must proactively prepare and strategize for a growing number of cyberattacks with an adaptive cyber defense plan.

The challenges of creating a cyber defense strategy

The Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) is typically tasked with creating a robust defense plan to stand up to the challenge; however, many need more support with their current defense strategies. Besides the evolving and unpredictable cyber threats from outside, CISOs often need to hurdle internal challenges.

For one thing, many cybersecurity teams need more adequate resources to analyze the overwhelming amount of intelligence from the field while adhering to a budget. Additionally, CISOs continuously face new compliance and regulation demands in data privacy and need to modify and incorporate them into current strategies.

An excellent cyber defense plan includes skilled security personnel, which takes time and effort to develop. Not to mention, CISOs are responsible for communicating cyber risks and business impacts to boards and senior management. This makes it challenging for CISO to maintain robust defense plans while creating value for business priorities and productivity.

What is a cyber-security defense plan?

A cyber defense plan aims to reduce the likelihood of a cyber attack on your business and minimize the impact if one occurs. A robust defense strategy considers the organization’s vulnerabilities while continually modifying to keep pace with growing cyber threats.

Every organization has its way of creating and maintaining a cyber defense plan that details its IT systems and the actions needed to identify and prevent cyberattacks against them. A good defense plan typically includes a clear prioritization of projects, initiatives, risks, mitigation strategies, key responsibilities (essentially, who does what, when), detailed outlines of technologies and methodologies, tracking of cyber threats, and routine risk assessments. The plan should also include incident response plans for security breaches and reports of key findings for the board of directors.

Before creating a robust defense plan

Trying to protect every aspect of a complex security operation can be overwhelming, with so many potential vulnerabilities and threats. That’s why it’s essential to focus on defending what matters most. By prioritizing projects and conducting proactive simulations and risk assessments, organizations can identify the areas that would cause the most devastation if breached and create a defense plan that effectively supports these critical areas.

One main component of this process is having a business impact analysis on information like where a company’s data is stored, what assets are most important, and if the company has insurance to cover any damages. This analysis allows a company to determine what it needs to protect the most and ensure it’s prepared for any potential attack. This information can then be used with frameworks such as NIST Cybersecurity Framework and ISO 27001 to ensure the company is using its resources best to protect itself.

Developing a cyber defense plan

Once all the information is gathered to identify, quantify, and consider risks, the next step is to develop strategies to address each. This can include creating policies and procedures to prevent, detect, and respond to cyber-attacks.

One crucial aspect is investing in new technologies and tools to help protect the organization’s systems. However, it is essential to consult with experts before investing to ensure that the organization’s defenses are more potent than those of other companies in the industry.
After that, the implementation of the plan should begin. This includes comprehensive employee training, methodology implementation, and regular monitoring of organizational environments to identify and address vulnerabilities. It’s also important to regularly review the plan to ensure it continues to be effective or needs any necessary adjustments.

A holistic approach to cybersecurity that will satisfy any CISO

As sophisticated cyber-attack tools and AI technology become more readily available on the darknet, organizations must take a holistic approach to their cybersecurity defense plan. This means considering not only potential vulnerabilities but also the motives and tactics of attackers. This approach allows CISOs to effectively review and update their plan, train employees on the latest policies and procedures, and monitor systems to create a robust incident response plan.

Managing an abundance of data in cybersecurity can be challenging for teams. HolistiCyber offers a solution by utilizing a data-centered approach to assist CISOs in prioritizing risks and projects. By using HolistiCyber, CISOs can avoid costly mistakes such as overspending on unnecessary technology tools and implementing ineffective security projects. Instead, they are provided with data-driven decision-making, resulting in more efficient use of resources and a shorter, more impactful list of tasks to accomplish.

A holistic approach ensures that the defense plan is tailored to the organization’s specific needs and is better equipped to handle the constantly evolving threat landscape.

Looking for an effective approach to 2023 cybersecurity? Download our latest white paper, “What Should CISOs do in 2023 to become satisfied with their cyber defense plans” to get started.


HolistiCyber enables organizations in their cyber defense challenge, providing them with state-of-the art consultancy, services & solutions to help them proactively and holistically defend themselves in a new era of constantly evolving cyber threats, many of which lead to nation state grade attacks. 

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