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3 Steps for Securing Today's Complex Digital Infrastructure

With the rise in cloud workloads and modern apps, we need to ensure that everything in the digital infrastructure is protected.

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teams at organizations of all sizes have been tasked with securing complex digital infrastructures over the past year due to accelerated tasks and the rush to an anywhere-work setup. While it was challenging for legacy companies to adjust and make rapid changes to that had been in place for decades, it was equally — if not more — challenging for startups to adapt quickly. There’s a first time for everything, but startups especially had to grapple with these rapid changes and challenges overnight.

The pandemic and anywhere-work setup accelerated the existing trend of remote work and I only expect this to continue. The work-from-anywhere mindset enhances employee productivity and experience, but securing an organization’s infrastructure remotely is extremely complex and challenging. However, as I recently discussed at VMware Security Connect, doing so should be a critical element of your overarching security strategy and posture.

Related: The Pivot to Remote, and What It Means for Security

The estimated skills shortage of three million professionals in the cybersecurity industry is a continuous challenge that is unlikely to change anytime soon. Personally, I’m proud to be a part of the industry — it is challenging as much as it is inspiring. I know I speak for my peers and colleagues when I say that I want to extend this industry passion to others so that, together, we can upskill the future workforce. Here are three key steps we can take in order to secure our ever-growing digital infrastructures:

1. Simplicity

The hybrid workforce resulted in extremely distributed digital infrastructures and networks across homes and offices around the globe. In order to secure organizations quickly and effectively, we learned that we must first simplify. The key to doing this is ensuring that security is built into the larger infrastructure to enable simpler operations for the Security Operation Center (SOC). By doing this seamlessly, security operators are able to automate tasks, eliminate mundane tasks and operate more efficiently. 

2. Speed

Security is the same as other industries and functions. In today’s fast-paced world, we’re all looking for ways to secure our organization at speed, without sacrificing quality. We often have the tools and capabilities to perform the right tasks and remediation but doing it effectively at speed is the critical element. Data is moving through our complex digital infrastructures across endpoints, workloads, networks and emails, so by operating intrinsically in the SOC, security operators can connect all of these elements to become effective quickly, resulting in a holistic security approach. 

3. Smarter

We’ve all been challenged over the past year, and I’d like to think we’ve become smarter and stronger security professionals as a result. We now have context and better insights into our digital infrastructures. At my company, we’re constantly hearing from our customers that they need the right tools, consoles and direction for their users, which provides the right context to help them make better decisions. By having these insights and contextualized data, we can help our customers drive smarter, important decisions at the business level to keep their organizations secure.

Related: Why CEOs Should Absolutely Concern Themselves With Cloud Security

As a security industry, we have great innovations to be proud of, both in our history and in our future. We’ve been challenged, but we’ve learned to create simpler, faster and smarter strategies and protection methods for our organizations as a result. As I mentioned above, by modernizing the SOC, we can enable security teams to work better and more efficiently. With the rise in cloud workloads and modern apps, we need to ensure that everything in the digital infrastructure is protected — the endpoint alone is no longer sufficient. And finally, our distributed workforce needs a unified and integrated security solution in order to keep their employee experience and security protocols the same both in the office and remotely. By implementing the approaches above, organizations will be one step closer to ensuring their distributed workforce and digital infrastructures are fully protected. 

Related: Cyberpreneurship, a New Age Tool in Cyber Security

Written By

Entrepreneur Leadership Network Writer

Scott Lundgren is VMware Carbon Black’s CTO and a member of the Carbon Black founding team. As CTO, he provides technical vision and strategic direction. He has experience across the security space, including technical leadership positions in offensive security research, development and operations.