It’s no secret that reputation management is one of the central features of any B2B enterprise.

In the B2B domain data breaches and other circumstances which compromise a corporation’s cyber security can be disastrous to its reputation. A successful cyber attack can cripple a B2B company. It is therefore crucial that companies take B2B cyber security seriously to protect both their reputations and the data of the companies and consumers they serve.

SIS has conducted extensive cyber security market research for companies looking to speak with decision makers, key opinion leaders and potential clients about security products and services.  Key methods we use including in-depth interviews, executive forums, roundtables, trade show research and Focus Groups.  The rise in technology has presented numerous new threats.  This provides ample opportunity to understand the threats and risks to your business.


B2B Cyber Security Trends

One of the trends already coming into effect is the race for compliance as B2B companies scramble to fall in line with the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Non-compliance can result in reputational damage and hefty fines. B2B executives are also struggling to keep pace, as their customers demand more personalized, more responsive, and faster tech-driven services.

Another trend will be increased priority given to cloud security. As companies increasingly depend on cloud storage, the cloud environment has become a potential target for cyber attacks. B2B companies are expected to develop data governance and security programs to counteract breaches on public clouds. Improved firewalls and secure web gateways are likely to be integrated in this effort to beef up B2B cybersecurity.


New Technologies to be Deployed in B2B Cyber Security Efforts

B2B and other companies are expected to employ machine learning, which can process immense amounts of data and carry out large-scale tasks to detect and correct suspicious behavior, known weaknesses, and zero-day attacks. On the flip side, cyber enemies are also expected to use machine learning to assist their attacks. They will seek to interrupt detection models and learn from protective responses, and they will also manipulate newfound vulnerabilities quicker than defenders can patch them.

Tech giants Cisco, Apple, Allianz and Aon recently announced that they had joined forces to create a new service designed for businesses to manage cyber risk. A press release from the companies stated that the new solution comprises secure technology from Apple and Cisco, an evaluation service from Aon measuring cyber resilience, and cyber insurance coverage options from Allianz.


New B2B Cyber Security Concerns

Research has revealed that only about a third of B2B companies are aware of the aforementioned GDPR. About half of all organizations are unlikely to be fully compliant with GDPR requirements. Although the GDPR is a massive shakeup to the way companies are required to handle their consumer data, the security threats that it is trying to prevent are very real, and B2B companies would do well to take it seriously.

Apart from GDPR non-compliance, a new threat is emerging in the form of cyber espionage. One-fifth of businesses responding to a recent survey identified cyber espionage as their most pressing concern. Twenty percent of the US respondents said they had experienced a cyber espionage attack in the past year. The survey also named phishing and targeted cyber attacks as principal concerns for global businesses.


Why B2B Cyber Security Matters to Business

A comprehensive cybersecurity plan and skillful execution can be an incredible selling point for clients as knowledge of vulnerabilities grows across the general society. Many small and medium-sized B2B companies feel that cyber attackers only set their sights on large enterprises such as Target. Data from 2015 shows that this could not be further from the truth: 43 percent of cyber attacks in that year targeted small businesses.

It’s therefore easy to see that all businesses are vulnerable and most vulnerable of all are the ordinary consumers when they sign up for services and when they make online purchases. These customers tend to blame the companies that are under attack because, in their eyes, the company allowed the attack to happen. In the end, it boils down to the value B2B companies place on their clients and the end users who consume their clients’ products.

B2B companies can take advantage of free resources such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Cyber Security Framework. The important thing is for these companies to get the best cybersecurity they can afford, and to promote awareness within their ranks about best practices, even if some of the recommendations available fall outside of their reach for financial and other reasons.


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