• According to IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach 2021 report, between 2020 and 2021, the average cost of data breaches surged by nearly 10%, surpassing USD 4 million—the most significant increase in almost a decade.
  • Introducing numerous new technologies into the control system environment brings opportunities and risks. While these innovations offer benefits, they also expose users to increased cybersecurity threats and online attacks.

Large organizations often grapple with the challenge of effectively managing many resources, spanning operating systems, applications, data, networks, and various endpoint devices such as computers and mobile devices.

This task becomes even more daunting when relying on outdated tools and processes, leading to a lack of awareness regarding the location and status of each asset.

The ability to adequately secure assets becomes compromised when their whereabouts and functionalities are unknown.

Consequently, regardless of size, Cyber Security Asset Management (CSAM) is a pivotal component of an organization’s cybersecurity infrastructure.

Proactive cybersecurity asset management must encompass a holistic view of the entire enterprise.

CSAM gives security teams real-time visibility into IT and media assets associated with security threats.

By implementing this approach, businesses can effectively mitigate vulnerabilities, strengthen their cybersecurity posture, and safeguard their digital assets against the constantly evolving landscape of cyber threats.

But before that, let’s first understand the repercussions of poor security asset management.

What Are the Risks of Poor Cyber Security Asset Management?

Ineffective asset management practices increase the likelihood of threat actors achieving their goals, such as unauthorized data access and operational disruptions, and amplify the potential negative consequences for the organization.

According to IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach 2023 report, in 2023, the global average cost of a data breach reached USD 4.45 million, reflecting a significant 15% increase over the past three years. This concerning trend is prompting organizations to prioritize cybersecurity, with 51% planning to boost their security investments in response.

During cyberattacks, attackers often exploit overlooked vulnerabilities, such as undiscovered servers, unprotected laptops, unpatched applications, open ports, and unsecured user accounts.

Robust asset management plays a crucial role in promptly and consistently mitigating these risks, ensuring the organization’s resilience in the face of evolving cybersecurity threats.

Operational disruptions and data breaches exemplify the severe consequences that can arise from inadequate CSAM. To effectively mitigate these risks, involving key stakeholders in your cybersecurity asset management process is imperative.

Who Should Be Part of Your Cybersecurity Asset Management Process?

To guarantee thorough decision-making, it is essential to involve critical stakeholders in overseeing the cybersecurity asset management process.

The involvement of these stakeholders needs to maintain alignment throughout the process for effective risk mitigation.

Consistently informing all individuals involved promotes cooperation and guarantees that choices align with the organization’s aims and security objectives.

When assembling your cybersecurity asset management team, it’s crucial to consider the tools at your disposal. These tools play a vital role in effectively identifying, monitoring, and managing cyber assets within your organization.

What Are the Best Cybersecurity Asset Management Tools Available Today?

Introducing numerous new technologies into the control system environment brings opportunities and risks. While these innovations offer benefits, they also expose users to increased cybersecurity threats and online attacks.

However, it’s important to note that many new technologies are designed with security and protection in mind, incorporating features and protocols to enhance the overall security posture of the systems they support.

Here are some popular tools for cybersecurity asset management:

  • Asset Panda

Asset Panda is an asset management application that offers comprehensive monitoring capabilities for various assets, including IT assets. Users benefit from unrestricted access, and the platform centralizes the monitoring of IT assets, providing a single location for oversight.

  • Freshservice

Freshservice provides a wide range of IT asset management applications and automated discovery features essential for effective asset management.

  • Upkeep

UpKeep integrates application performance management and enterprise asset management functionalities into a single solution. It also offers computerized maintenance management systems for streamlined asset management processes.

  • ManageEngine’s AssetExplorer

AssetExplorer is a web-based application designed to manage cyber assets comprehensively.

It enables teams to oversee IT assets, from deployment to retirement, including both hardware and software assets. The platform stands out for its integrated software license management tools.

  • ServiceNow

ServiceNow platform serves as a medium for connecting various IT functions, including portfolio management and service management.

Its IT Asset Management service allows teams to manage cloud-based assets, hardware, software, and hardware life cycles.

ServiceNow also offers built-in functionalities for hardware asset management and IT asset offboarding, among other features.

Having covered the leading CSAM tools, it’s time to delve into actionable strategies for optimal implementation. Let’s navigate through essential practices that enhance CSAM and fortify your organization’s digital defenses.

What are Some Cyber Security Asset Management Best Practices?

Success factors for cybersecurity asset management vary. Below, four crucial factors are elucidated:

  1. Visibility tools: Teams need access to tools capable of consistently gathering information from various sources.

While some of these tools offer automation for system modifications, prioritizing visibility is critical. Read-only access to other asset management systems suffices for core security needs.

  1. Data accessibility across multiple tiers: Access to comprehensive data across various tiers is crucial, including hardware or platform details like model, manufacturer, serial number, and configuration.

Similarly, information on operating system versions, patch levels, and application versions is vital. Access to data on software libraries, configurations, and internal/external software updates is also necessary.

  1. Access to key data sources: Accessing critical data sources is paramount. This includes accountability infrastructure like on-site assets, assets delegated to employees or partners, and cloud workloads.

Human resources data, procurement information, and asset management systems are vital for comprehensive asset management.

  1. Strong business unit relationships: Collaborative relationships among business units are essential for the functionality of asset management systems. Business units must work together to acquire and maintain data efficiently.

While alternative methods for accessing the same data may exist, collaboration among departments typically yields quicker and more effective results.

The Final Word

This cybersecurity asset management guide reveals why it is paramount for organizations to mitigate cybersecurity risks and safeguard their digital assets.

By involving key stakeholders, leveraging advanced tools, and implementing best practices, businesses can enhance their cybersecurity posture and resilience against evolving threats.

Prioritizing CSAM ensures proactive identification and management of vulnerabilities, minimizing the potential negative impact of data breaches and operational disruptions.

With a comprehensive asset management approach, organizations can confidently navigate the complex cybersecurity landscape, protecting their assets and maintaining business continuity in an increasingly digital world.

Delve into what’s and why’s, best practices, and more through our comprehensive security-related whitepaper library.