Why Startups Should Think About Cyber Security from an Early Stage

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Creating a startup is all about hustle and bustle. If you are bootstrapping or even if you have received your first round of investment and the first set of customers, your expenditure and where you are spending the money is extremely important in the early stages to achieve sustainable growth. At this time the focus mainly remains on brand growth, team growth, sales and so on and so forth. However in this crazy journey to achieve greatness at time an extremely vital component is sadly kept into the confines of being branded as ‘luxury’ that startups cannot afford right then- Cyber Security.

Cyber Security is something that has become exceedingly important over the years for businesses to have especially in light of the recent lock downs taking a heavy toll on business due to the cyber attacks they had to face during the period. Work from home created conditions of porous security which resulted in these incidents being proliferated far easily than earlier. However many Startups continue to believe that it is something to be implemented at later stages of the company. Nothing can be more far from the truth. Someone once said to me that “Cyber Security is not a luxury dish that you have with your meal, it is the salt in your meal”, an extremely basic and necessary ingredient. It is of the same or of more importance as your sales funnel or branding and marketing efforts that you implement in your organisation.

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Cyber Security becomes an important building block in establishing customer trust for an organisation. In the current day an age both brick and mortar business or online products or stores have digital infrastructure. Due to inefficient, incomplete or a complete absence of cyber security measures Startups are a very easy targets for hackers. Cyber Incidents and Privacy issues can keep the customers with sour taste who would be unwilling to continue business with the organisation. Research suggests that almost 88% of the customers will no use a product if it has cyber security issues. Recent awareness drives and widespread coverage of cyber attacks will only increase this number.

There is another thing to consider that it is very difficult to implement full proof security if its is not considered from the very beginning. A startup when a product is being built or a first customers are being on boarded and security is not in place, it simply heightens the risk even down the line when you think it is the wight time to take such measures, you might already be sadly, too late.

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However budding entrepreneurs and business owners might be thinking that how is it possible for organisations just starting up to implement elaborate measures to take care of your cyber security from the very beginning? The simple answer to that question is you do not. You don’t need to spend millions of dollars from the beginning for your security. Its all about creating certain number of processes and having an effective way of monitoring those processes for your organisation. With modern digital technologies, this can be done in a few hundred of dollars if you know where to look.

In my experience in the industry so far and what I have learnt from individuals with wide arena of experience, its the human factor in security which ultimately results in the weakness more often than not, and what you need are tools and technologies to monitor and safeguard from a man made disaster in your organisation. In addition to that abiding by the basic cyber security compliance s goes a long way in achieving your goal of a secured product or service and creating safety and privacy for your customers, thus helping you build a trustworthy brand.

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Lastly I would like to note that cyber security is a never ending process. There is a constant reworking and re imagining of the cyber threats out there and therefore and constant re enforcement of the defenses is crucial. Zero Trust is the way forward as far is security is concerned. Don’t hesitate to ask for help as there is a constant need to be updated with the changing patterns of technology and threats. As with the market, which constantly changes and you need to adapt accordingly, the same goes for security. The threats are constantly changing and evolving and you need to adapt for the same.

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I am an Entrepreneur, Educator, Business Strategist and a Tech Enthusiast. I am also the Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer of Teamcognito.