Keeping your board of directors up to date on the state of cybersecurity at your company is an important part of managing risk and ensuring that you're doing everything you can to protect your business from cyberattacks.
Board members usually don't need to see all the technicalities and detailed reports. They do however like to see a high-level summary to understand the bigger picture.
When sharing cybersecurity insights, it is useful to use language that the board can understand. Cut the jargon, come straight to the point, and show your board how you are taking the proper steps towards securing your company from external threats.
Here are the top cybersecurity metrics to share with your corporate board
1. Time to assess and eliminate security incidents
The quicker you resolve and eliminate malware, the lesser the damage. Any organization’s security posture is determined by how long it takes to:
Identify there is malware
Respond to the malware
Eliminate the malware
To measure this time, you can,
Point out a security issue, deal with it, and record how long it took you to do so
Hire a third-party company to assess it for you and give you a security rating
Use a combination of your internal and external resources to quantify your reaction time to a security incident and the total time taken to eliminate it
Present this metric to your company board to help them gain insight into your ability to eliminate risk.
2. Risks due to third-party companies associated with you
If you have some of your processes outsourced to other organizations, such as supply-chain, you might be at the risk of invasion. According to a study by SecureLink and Ponemon Institute, 51% of businesses suffered a data breach caused by a third party.
Show the board the strength of your vendors’ cybersecurity posture. This can be measured by:
Conducting screening of their cybersecurity measures during onboarding
Assessing them on their ability to identify and eliminate vulnerabilities
Using security ratings to get data on a company’s cybersecurity
Share the security position of all third parties with your board to offer them more clarity into your cybersecurity posture.
3. Number of reports of suspicious activities
This is a critical cybersecurity metric that you should present to the board. Keep track of the percentage of employees in your company who report suspicious emails and assess how prone your infrastructure is to phishing attempts.
You can also get a penetration test report generated to identify the vulnerabilities in your cybersecurity program and share with the board the measures you are taking to eliminate those.
4. Previous audits and assessments of your cybersecurity program
To show your board how far you have come about improving your company’s security, showcase the results of the past audits and reviews of your program against the results obtained from the penetration test report.
5. Remaining vulnerabilities to be patched
Identify how many security issues you have been able to resolve and how many require patching. Sometimes, vulnerabilities occur when there is a new launch or update in the infrastructure. These are easy to miss but should be regularly monitored to ensure that your cybersecurity posture stays strong.
Sharing your cybersecurity metrics with the board can build your case by demonstrating the effectiveness with which you are running the organization’s cybersecurity program. Communicating them effectively will allow you to seek your board’s help in strengthening your security posture further.
Finally, consider a penetration test by Packetlabs to identify where vulnerabilities lie and eliminate them. Although automated security tools do a decent job, only a skilled, ethical hacker can provide an in-depth report.