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The Establishment Of Security Metrics

Jan 15, 2008
The computer has indeed become one of the most utilized tools in the business world, regardless of what industry you work in. But as useful as the computer is, it actually brings quite a number of disadvantages as well. This is especially true when you are connected to the Internet, and this connection is inevitable for the proper operation of your business. Your computer would then hold a lot of classified information, which can be easily tapped into by hackers and such all over the web. Identity theft is one of the common problems that have risen due to this. This is precisely why there is a need for security metrics to be implemented.

When discussing the concept of security metrics, a popular misconception is that this is actually similar to security measurements. Thus, there is a need to distinguish both from each other. Basically, you can generate measurements just by counting the contents of raw data that has been collected. On the other hand, metrics is generated from the analysis of this raw data. So, measurements actually pertain to the raw data that has been collected, while metrics pertains to the interpretation of the collected data. Measurements are then objective in nature, while metrics can be both objective and subjective.

If you want to know whether or not the security metrics your company currently implements are, then you have to ask yourself a few questions. First, do the security metrics you employ indicate the extents as to your company's security goals are met? A primary security goal here is confidentiality of data, of course. Your security metrics should indicate just how successful your overall security programs is in accomplishing security goals. This way, security metrics can drive courses of action that are according to the goals that have been implemented.

Security metrics is indeed a very valuable tool for any company. With security metrics, a company's security program can be broken down into components, just so these can be analyzed for their efficiency. Security metrics can also be used in analyzing just how efficient a certain process or product is. What's more, the abilities of the employees themselves can also be measured, especially when it concerns the ability to address any security issue that falls under a department's job responsibility. With the analysis of data collected, security metrics can then provide more insight to the following questions: Is there significant improvement in the company's security program? How effective is our security program when compared to that of other companies? Are we really confident in the security offered by the program we have created ourselves?

Nonetheless, there are certain steps to consider when creating an efficient security metrics program. You should first define the objectives and goals of the program. From there, you can then decide on the particular metrics to generate. Strategies for generating such metrics should then be developed, along with the establishment of targets and benchmarks. Then, there's the matter of reporting the metrics that have been determined. After the reporting, a plan of action should then be devised, geared towards improvement of the company's security program.
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