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Once organisations have moved their workloads, data, and apps into the cloud, it can be tempting to breathe a sigh of relief in the belief that the hard work of digital transformation is over. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, the real work is only just beginning.

Now, the focus must be on ongoing optimisation and constant vigilance to reduce the risk of cyberattacks. You can do this through a network security policy management (NSPM) solution that automates the governance process and ensures your security controls are compliant across your entire environment.

Security risks inherent in accelerated transformation

Many organisations relied on a DevOps approach to speed up their transformation and achieve rapid time to value. However, this focus on speed rather than cybersecurity can introduce inconsistencies. DevOps professionals are rarely trained in security and are usually working under time pressures to deliver business requirements. This can result in oversights and mistakes, as well as rapid changes that can create vulnerabilities.

Even if your security environment was watertight before your transformation, many organisations have found that their previously segmented and protected architectures have become flat and opaque again now that they’re in the cloud. Some organisations have to restart their discovery processes again, creating significant amounts of manual work and introducing the potential for blind spots and security gaps.

The hype around DevOps has led many organisations to believe that a DevOps approach can solve all of their issues. The truth is that the DevOps approach is really about becoming more agile. It’s about fostering a culture of collaboration between development and operational teams. However, the downside of this approach is that it focuses on agility and speeding up outcomes without always considering security.

This has led to the rise of a concept known as DevSecOps, in which every member of the team is responsible for security. While this sounds ideal in theory, it rarely occurs in practice and most organisations continue to transform with little regard to how their transformational activities will impact on security.

Transformation requires constant evolution and management

The inescapable truth of digital transformation is that it’s not as simple as putting services into the cloud. It requires constant evolution and improvement across the business’s entire operating model and processes. Optimisation is essential to protect the investments already made in digital transformation and to continue leveraging those investments for on going returns.

Optimisation inherently involves change. Organisations moving at speed are likely to see high levels of change occurring all the time. This is a good thing; it’s the point of transformation and it can help businesses compete more effectively. However, if someone isn’t managing all of this change from a security perspective, then the organisation will be at risk.

Digital transformation has been identified as one of the causes of the expanding attack surface for businesses. The pandemic is thought to have accelerated digital transformation efforts by as much as seven years. However, cybercriminals also took advantage of the accelerated digital transformation and increased their attacks, which are also becoming more sophisticated.[1]

This means cybersecurity must be elevated to protect your digitally transformed organisation.

Businesses need to control the security of their transformed environment through governance

Once your organisation has transformed, your old security measures are almost certain to be out of date. You may need to conduct an audit to determine how many elements you now have in the cloud, how they’re protected, and whether those protections match your governance model.

It’s impossible to do this effectively using manual discovery models. You need a solution that automates the discovery process and illuminates dependencies between and among your IT services and applications. And, you need a NSPM tool that enforces security policies consistently across your environments regardless of whether they’re on-premises or in the cloud. The solution should prevent any non-compliant controls and changes that are missing controls from being deployed without being specifically approved. And, it should allow you to micro-segment your network to strengthen your protection against unauthorised access.

Unified network governance and policy management across your environment can help future-proof your transformation, help you leverage your investments for a stronger return, and continually optimise your IT architecture for increased competitive advantage.

To find out how ditno can help your business stay secure even as you optimise your digital transformation across various environments, contact the team today.