As innovation continues at a profound scale and the latest tech advancements – AI, ML, 5G, Wifi6, hyper-automation – continue to reshape entire enterprises, the need for risk management and data governance to be baked into the DevOps lifecycle early on is becoming increasingly vital for business resilience.
Quantifying the current risk landscape
According to the World Economic Forum, “by 2025, it’s estimated that 463 exabytes of data will be created each day globally – that’s the equivalent of 212,765,957 DVDs per day!” But as more data is produced and the value of data skyrockets, we can only expect that more bad actors will attempt to successfully exploit emerging threat vectors brought on by surging data volumes.
Another critical business risk to consider is ransomware: which remains on the rise. The firm Cybersecurity Ventures (CV) estimates that ransomware costs are expected to reach $265 billion by 2031. CV also predicts that there will be a new attack every 2 seconds as ransomware perpetrators continue to refine their malware payloads and related extortion activities.
Additionally, human error remains a pressing business concern. Last month, an engineering “configuration error” brought down the Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp ecosystem for nearly 6 hours globally. Other sites like Twitter were also disrupted during the outage, due to the surge of visits it saw as users scrambled to stay connected. Additionally, in the cybersecurity realm alone, IBM Cyber Security Intelligence Index Report concluded that 95% of all data breaches resulted from human error.
Here’s the bottom line: Organizations today must be structured in a way that allows them to recognize objective risks, respond to them, and evolve alongside shifting dynamics in real-time. Here’s where a proactive, IT-driven risk management approach can help.
Building risk management strategies into your IT operations
As businesses grow and evolve their digital ecosystems in 2022, all aspects of business resilience will map back to IT and DevOps processes. One of the easiest ways to bake risk management and governance into your business structure is to marry it with your IT operations. There are a few ways organizations can do this.
The first is by adopting a concept known as “shifting left” – an industry best practice that acknowledges that security, compliance, and governance (SCaG) priorities should be initiatives that are incorporated into the development process early on. Essentially as soon as possible, to maximize compliance efforts and reduce risk early on.
The second is prioritizing agility. Amidst today’s ever-complex IT environments, everything can change in a heartbeat. Organizations that can respond to changes and emerging risks quickly and with agility will be the ones that thrive. If you’re not already investing in tooling, invest in IT toolkits that enable your teams to help identify and respond to changes in the IT ecosystem in real-time. Better yet, leverage AI to automate the monitoring/response process and free up time for more innovation within your organization.
Another point to consider when adopting agile practices is that over-rotating on the centralization of governance decisions can lead to poor business outcomes. Again, governance and compliance should be a part of your DevOps processes – not separate from it. In order to allow for decentralized decision-making on what constitutes acceptable business risk across your organization, there must be a framework in place that incorporates feedback from all stakeholders to ensure that all governance and business risks are accounted for, managed and assessed early on.
Lastly, seek continuous improvement. The world of IT, like anything else, is largely imperfect. As you learn more about your evolving risk and IT ecosystems – through constant monitoring, management, assessment, and testing – experiment with new tools, processes and toolkits that empower your teams to find solutions to problems, threats and concerns even quicker.
Building business resilience isn’t an exact science, but as innovation continues and new threat vectors emerge daily, SCaG priorities should be at the forefront of your business resilience – and DevOps – plans.