What is cyber security KPI?

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Cyber Security KPI

KPIs, also known as Key performance indicators are measurable values demonstrating how effectively an organization achieves its key business objectives. Depending on your needs to track, your organization can choose different KPIs. 

In cybersecurity, KPIs are effective in measuring the success of your security management program and aid in decision-making.

The importance of cybersecurity metrics

You can’t measure your security if you do not track the right KPIs in order to create a cyber secure environment in your organization by tracking specific cybersecurity KPIs. 

A comprehensive security metrics program allows organizations to achieve a number of goals, including enhanced visibility, the ability to evaluate an internal security program against industry benchmarks, and improved decision-making. KPIs, eventually, help you to build the demonstrative value of your security department to key stakeholders throughout the organization.

Many organizations, however, do not implement comprehensive KPIs that enhance overall cybersecurity programs. 

Choosing the right KPIs for your organization

There is no defined or well-made list of cybersecurity KPIs and KRIs that all businesses or organizations should track. 

The metrics you choose will depend on your organization’s needs and risk appetite. Those metrics should, however, be clear to anyone looking at your reporting. For instance, your business-side colleagues should be able to understand them without an explanation. 

To choose the KPIs that are best suited for your business, take the following steps:

  1. Write a clearly defined objective for each KPI.
  2. Share each KPI with other shareholders.
  3. Review each KPI frequently.
  4. Make sure each KPI is available for action.
  5. Adjust each KPI as necessary to fit your business’s changing needs.
  6. Confirm that each KPI is attainable
  7. Update each KPI objective as needed.

When defining KPI metrics, the most common mistakes made by organizations include:

  • Not committing to make changes based on metrics (despite the risks)
  • Measuring a lot, too soon, too little, or too late
  • Measuring the irrelevant or incorrect things
  • Not defining metrics precisely
  • Not using data to evaluate individual or personnel performance
  • Using metrics to motivate rather than understand
  • Collecting data that isn’t used
  • Having a lack of communication and training
  • Misinterpreting data

What is the correct metric method?

Metrics should follow the “SMART” structure:

  • Specific: targeted to the area being measured or analysed, not a byproduct or result 
  • Measurable: data which is collected has to be accurate and complete
  • Actionable: easy to understand the data and take action
  • Relevant: measure what’s important about the data
  • Timely: data is available when you need it 

Note: You should evaluate and monitor your KPIs constantly, especially as new data becomes available, you need to be able to see it and act upon it. Always examine your cybersecurity metrics after a successful data breach, including any new information in your KPI reporting. 

How do improve or implement better cybersecurity KPIs?

Using governance, risk and compliance software to help improve your organization’s KPIs is not enough. Software-as-a-service (SasS) tools not only speed up the information aggregation process but also help stakeholders communicate better.

CyberGamp can make tracking your business’s metrics a breeze by automating most of the process. Simplifying the IT audit process, CyberGamp offers risk assessment modules giving insight into both vendor and company risk. 

Its Risk Trend and Risk Responsibility graphics provide easy-to-digest, colour-coded visuals providing management with a view of the company’s current risk, making reporting on KPIs and cybersecurity metrics much easier for your organization’s CISO.

To learn more about how CyberGamp can help your organization improve its cybersecurity KPIs and become more compliant, contact us today.

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