Given the constantly changing cyber threat landscape, the demand for experienced cyber security consultants grows.
What do cyber security consultants do?
Before we rush into listing the aspects, let’s first define what are the duties performed by consultants. Basically, cyber security consultants help organizations to prevent and battle security threats through their expertise in networks, databases, firewalls, encryption, and hardware. The role of a cyber security consultant is crucial to any business as they perform the following duties:
- Assessing and evaluating existing systems for weaknesses;
- Testing companies cyber security measures, designing, and implementing better defense solutions;
- Upgrading security systems to meet the latest regulations and standards as needed;
- Configuring firewalls, installing anti-ransomware software, managing network, and system security;
- Responding to occurring security-related issues and incidents;
- Interviewing employees and department heads to better understand security issues and offering professional recommendations to your in-house security team.
As you see, cyber security consultants are hired to perform a broad spectrum of duties. That’s why choosing your next consultant with forethought reduces the chances of your business getting compromised. Follow this list of six essential things to consider when choosing a consultant to find the best professionals in the industry.
Before you start looking for a consultant, identify your business’s security requirements. Common cyber security needs include security operations and compliance, data, cloud, system, and network security.
Keep in mind that some cyber security companies are more narrow-focused than others. Choose a cyber security provider that caters services for each client with their specific environment.
When you’re looking to use the services of a cyber security company, the first step is checking whether they’re reliable. Their cyber security professionals should be competent enough to manage any occurring security-related issues and incidents. Consultants must finish the required cyber security training before providing any consulting services. This training may consist of a Master’s degree in cyber security science in combination with multiple years working in the industry. Make sure a consulting company has at least one of the following certificates: CRISC, CISA, CISM, CISSP, CCSP, CISSP, and CGEIT.
You can also run an extensive background check on them to ensure they do not have any history of mishandling confidential information and reveal other existing red flags if there are any.
Cyber security lands on a broad spectrum, and that is why your future consultant must be able to explain their areas of expertise. Besides listing professional skills, a cyber security consultant must be familiar with security standards and the latest regulations in the industry.
Depending on your niche, customizable options may be needed. Some consultants will offer only professional interpersonal advice on security practices, while others will also implement hands-on solutions to protect your company from cyber threats.
A good cyber security professional will manage performance evaluation reports with analytics for you. Your consultant should be able to turn out monthly reports and furnish you with all the details. Before you hire a cyber security expert, discuss the metrics they’re using to evaluate the program’s performance.
Look for the previous projects listed on the website of a cyber security consulting company. It’s always a great indicator when a company showcases the best case studies, risk assessment projects, and training reports. With a focus on long-term partnership, it can be useful to ask your potential candidate about the average duration of their existing client relationships. Additionally, you can ask them to provide the numbers of returning clients and those not satisfied with the service.
Your consulting company should have no existing contracts and business partnerships with software or hardware vendor companies to prevent biased advice. Alternatively, it’s best to seek a mix of working experience with government and commercial organizations to benefit from the best practices in both spears.
Cyber security insurance protects businesses from the consequences of cyber threats and attacks. Cyber insurance is an essential risk management tool for organizations that use and store sensitive client and financial information. The coverage will differ based on your insurance company, but it typically covers expenses related to cyber security consulting. Check whether or not your insurance provider will cover security and privacy consulting services of a chosen provider.
Where can you find a cyber security consultant?
It takes a lot of time and effort to find a skilled consultant with hands-on experience. A few truly remarkable professionals are available, but they are all in high demand. So, how do you start your search for a cyber security consultant? First off, the most obvious online job posting isn’t such a great idea. If you want to find the best talent, it’s worth looking into the best-reviewed cyber security companies in your area. And remember that your next consultant should be able to convince you with their expertise and experience. Good luck!