Any IT leader is acutely aware of the importance of cybersecurity. With high profile IT failures and data breaches affecting major brands all the time, there is enormous pressure on CIOs to protect both information and reputation.

Yet at the same time, there is a drive necessity for digital innovation. Companies need to ensure that their business models are future proof and also identify new business opportunities, enabled by the latest technology.

It is essential that this drive for transformation never overshadows the need for robust and evolving security. Here’s why:

Data is money

Now, more than ever, cybercriminals want your company’s data. Customer information is top of the shopping list, as businesses face ever growing fines for its loss, so it’s appealing for criminals to hold data for ransom. When you’re upgrading systems and implementing new initiatives, it’s vital to protect your most important asset – data.

Downtime is dangerous

As TSB and British Airways can testify, a systems outage can be catastrophic both for day-to-day business and to the ongoing trust of your customers. If cyber security is overlooked as new systems are implemented or older systems age, you are putting your business at risk.

New technology can be unknown

One of the big challenges of digital transformation is that some of the issues and risks are unquantifiable until the programme is implemented. The only way to mitigate against this is to ensure you have strong security expertise at hand and to test, test and test again.

With so much at stake it can be tempting to shelve digital transformation plans altogether: but of course this is not a realistic option. Digital programmes  are essential for any business that wants to remain competitive and protect – or extend – its market share.

The secret is to ensure you have the best possible advice from experienced professionals. X-PM has seen a huge upswing in demand for IT leaders with proven expertise in both cybersecurity and successful transformation. This is the right time to bring in external brains for an independent review and Invest in knowledge and experience, and your programme will look after itself.