What Are the 5 Elements of Trustworthy Digital Transformation?

Successful digital transformation requires consumers evaluate the security of a company’s initiatives by questioning five key elements

According to the FBI, cybercrime increased by 400% in 2020. In its annual risk index, the World Economic Forum stated that cyberattacks are one of the most significant risks corporations face. Advanced hacking capabilities and services for sale on the dark web compound the issue.

Ominously, there has been a dramatic increase in island hopping attacks. These attacks occur when digital transformation efforts are commandeered by cybercriminals, enabling the infrastructure to target the consumer. In other words, cyber heists have escalated to hostage situations. Cybercrime syndicates are now hijacking the IT systems of major brands to target those who trust that brand and its IT environment. This reality poses a tremendous risk to consumers; much like how, in the physical world, you would not want be held hostage when visiting a bank, you wouldn’t want your digital information attacked in this way.

More than ever, governments, corporate leaders and consumers must become engaged in the push to ensure effective cybersecurity strategies are in place. Yet even as investments in cybersecurity accelerate, breaches continue to occur. More often than not, those breaches are destructive.

Sustainable digital transformation can only be achieved by architecting security from inception, rather than bolting it on as an afterthought. But how can a consumer evaluate the security of a company’s digital transformation initiatives? We suggest they ask tough questions regarding the five foundational elements of secure digital transformation:

  • Governance – Is the head of cybersecurity a C-level position?
  • Investment – Has 10% of IT budget been allocated to cybersecurity?
  • Process/Control – Are the security controls integrated, and has the company complied with the NIST Cybersecurity Framework?
  • Customers/Suppliers – Does the company provide consumers best practices on cybersecurity, and do they mandate that their suppliers also follow the same best practices?
  • Response – Has the company developed a comprehensive strategy for responding to incidents?

The promise of digital transformation is that it will foster great innovation in consumer products and services. Consumers also need to understand that cybercrime has become the new normal, and be even more vigilant in terms of their service providers’ cybersecurity practices. That also means they must take responsibility for their own cybersecurity at work, at home and when traveling. Being a vigilant consumer in 2020 requires indivuduals to evaluate the five fundamentals of digital transformation before they place their digital lives at risk.

Marc Delesalle, director of investments at SVK Crypto, also contributed to this story.

Avatar photo

Tom Kellermann

Tom Kellermann is the Head of Cybersecurity Strategy for VMware Carbon Black. Previously, Tom held the position of Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Carbon Black. Prior to joining Carbon Black, Tom was the CEO and founder of Strategic Cyber Ventures. In 2020, he was appointed to the Cyber Investigations Advisory Board for the United States Secret Service. On January 19, 2017, Tom was appointed the Wilson Center’s Global Fellow for Cyber Policy. Tom previously held the positions of Chief Cybersecurity Officer for Trend Micro; Vice President of Security for Core Security and Deputy CISO for the World Bank Treasury. In 2008 Tom was appointed a commissioner on the Commission on Cyber Security for the 44th President of the United States. In 2003 he co-authored the Book “Electronic Safety and Soundness: Securing Finance in a New Age.”

tom-kellermann has 1 posts and counting.See all posts by tom-kellermann