Combining security and digital transformation in organizations

Last updated: January 5, 2021

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Today’s challenge is to disrupt markets where there’s a constant demand for evolution and agility – and that’s where digital transformation plays a vital role. What is digital transformation and is your organization embracing innovation to power this change? Businesses need to evolve to adapt to changing business landscapes across the globe.

Being nimble and agile is key to making this work. Enterprises that focus on accelerating their processes, competencies and models leverage technologies that aid digital transformation, while still securing their businesses.

“Today, with aggressive digital disruption proliferating, the global business environment is transforming faster than ever. It is therefore important for enterprises to better understand how emerging technologies offer a compelling value proposition to keep pace with this dynamic reality,” said Madhusudhan KM, Chief Technology Officer of Mindtree.

Apart from the need for companies to pursue a digital agenda, organizations are also facing increased exposure to risk and security weaknesses. While many consider digital transformation as a focus area that overlaps with digital privacy and security, it could prove to be a costly mistake for the organization over the long term.

Businesses that prioritize the integration of security with their digital agenda can drive significant change and gain a competitive advantage over most of their competitors in the industry.

Why do enterprises need to speak risk and security more effectively? 

Few organizations tackle security because it’s fun. Digital security in today’s tech-driven space is indeed a means to an end – and end which intends to mitigate and reduce, if not eliminate, risk. When most of our everyday tasks are digitized and organizations have most of their processes powered by the internet, cybersecurity is crucial. Risk should take the center stage for businesses, particularly ones that deal with client data and confidential information. Online breaches have boiled down to a clear theme: “It’s not if, it’s when.”

All it takes is a single breach for a company to be exposed – and most often, the business runs the risk of losing its reputation and customers. The threat of fraud and concerns around losing customers has several industries turning to digital identity verification.

According to Equifax, over half of IT professionals, today don’t tap into advanced and secure authentication processes. In fact, what’s alarming is that this trend can fuel further instances of fraud, risking identity theft and sensitive details of their business like biometrics of a client. The goal for any business’s digital identity verification process should be to manage risk efficiently while securing the data of their customers. 

The ideal digital identity system would tap into technologies such as biometrics and liveness detection since they add additional layers of security, creating almost no room for fraud. When backed by government-issued IDs, digital identity platforms like Passbase enable a friction-free process for the user that gets completed in a couple of seconds.

However, streamlining their identity verification process shouldn’t be the only focus. They need to enhance their identity ownership model by enabling users with more control over their data. 

Why unlocking robust digital transformation is key to a successful business 

Digital transformation may be more difficult to pull off than traditional change management projects. There’s a catch, though – the results are significantly different and hard to miss. With digital transformation, an effective model will give way to successful client acquisition, retention and engagement with current and prospective customers.

Data shows that the industry is listening. In a study by McKinsey Global Survey, more than eight in ten respondents highlight that their organization has taken to driving such efforts in recent years. To garner this success, organizations deploy more technologies – particularly ones that are key to data privacy and security – when compared to their peers in the industry. A large part of this change is driven and adopted by the organization’s IT and cybersecurity, customer service and marketing divisions – key areas that look to gain maximum effectiveness for gaining clients and sustaining the momentum through a secure channel. The studies show that traditional change management will not be able to keep up with the pace that’s offered by digital transformation.

Research revealed that just over 40% of companies have a dedicated digital transformation unit in place, and over 50% companies gained positive returns through technology disruption. In this case, the biggest factor that played a pivotal role in their success was not just tapping into resources to make it happen, it was also being prepared for the change. What was encouraging was the fact that 2 out of every 3 organizations were capable of enabling and adapting to this transformation within three years.

Leveraging digital transformation also enabled the company to amplify their resources – right from talent to senior leadership. Over 37% of the companies said that digital transformation had helped them create new jobs, and unlike what reports stated, did not kill many jobs. This means that even if a company is slow on the uptake, with the right practices in place, they are empowered to build better products and services over time.

Digital transformation thrives on trust and digital security. Users and customers need to know that their data is not being manipulated or compromised. Identity and access management is critical to authenticating users accessing and controlling data. To realize this goal, organizations that eye digital transformation should also integrate security into their plans to sustain the momentum of change and develop it.

Bottom line

In today’s competitive landscape, companies must ensure their digital and physical strategies blend in to secure, protect and support their operations. This can be done by:

  • Redefining the business’ approach to data ownership
  • Integrating digital security into their business plan
  • Including cybersecurity teams when running growth and business development initiatives.

Businesses should work towards re-evaluating their strategy to include digital security as part of their business transformation plan.

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