Tracy Reinhold, Security Manager at Everbridge, explains how critical event management can ensure preparedness for upcoming business threats
Without the right measures in place, organizations can face serious business and reputation losses if they are affected by a critical event.
Over the past year, new trends and threats have emerged, leading to an increase in new paradigms of risk and organizations scrambling to prepare for an unexpected global shock. A recent Forrester report found that a large number of companies experienced several critical incidents in the past two years, referring to damage suffered by inclement weather, theft of intellectual or physical property, computer failures and cyber attacks. To make matters worse, the hybrid workforce highlighted a new wave of challenges that businesses must work around as well as new opportunities to seize when managing evolving risks and building business resilience.
Before the pandemic, physical and digital events were often seen as separate entities, however, the global adoption of large-scale hybrid work has shifted this mindset. Unfortunately, due to existing risk management and response plans that are not always standardized, organizations face severe business and reputation losses if they are affected by a critical event. As such, board members and executives have started to take a proactive approach to managing critical events, to ensure that they are prepared to deal with any emerging threats to the business and to react, recover and prosper in the event of a disruptive incident.
What is Critical Event Management (CEM) and what does it protect against?
This new hybrid work culture opens the door to a plethora of new threats, requiring a new kind of security and environment with convergent risk management. While individual departments tend to invest in technology and management plans to anticipate and respond to potential critical threats, these tend to be siled into a business unit, which is not as effective for business. company as a whole. In fact, siled responses hamper the eventual response, because when teams lack a common operational framework and are forced to work together, it compromises the effectiveness of preparedness efforts, which require a full picture of threats in the workplace. whole company.
By having a critical event management plan in place, organizations can be better prepared to deal with the ever-changing threat landscape, allowing them to respond more quickly and effectively to critical incidents. An integrated strategy across all areas of the business will enable organizations to prepare for natural, human-made or digital incidents that present a risk or serious threats to property or people; whether it is severe weather, terrorism, civil unrest and protests, system failures, cyber attacks, data breaches or infectious diseases. In this way, companies will have a single, easy-to-use strategic plan that simultaneously supports business continuity, disaster recovery, emergency response, natural disasters, IT incident risk management. , mass notifications and communication.
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What are the four components of critical event management?
When identifying a CEM platform, organizations should look for the following features:
- Intelligence: a CEM platform capable of proactively assessing potential threats before they manage to turn into full-fledged critical events. It is also expected to provide integrated risk insights and data feeds supported by analysts around the clock. The platform is also expected to offer organizations thousands of data sources, from weather to dark news. web, which the platform then filters and categorizes based on their risk factor, simplifying the response process.
- Correlation: the CEM platform must provide a dynamic correlation engine, which aligns risk events to assets and combines static location, expected location, and the last known location of people and assets to determine who or what can be impacted during the incident.
- Orchestration: In addition, the platform should also offer automated workflows that allow organizations to continuously monitor threats, while also automating and orchestrating SOPs, communications and action plans during crisis to ensure that the right action is still taken.
- Analytic: Finally, integrated measures will ensure that incidents are addressed and mitigated in the right way at the right time, helping organizations understand the effectiveness of their own actions and how they can improve for future cases.
How Can Critical Event Management Help Organizations?
As threats constantly change, it becomes increasingly difficult to predict and respond to crises. In such unpredictable circumstances, a detailed contingency plan is vital for business continuity. Critical events can occur in any line of business and quickly spread throughout the organization. With a good CEM strategy, organizations will be able to avoid this as the program will be integrated across all lines of business and provide insights to analyze potential threats and their impact. Not only will this allow effective and interdepartmental communications, but the teams will have a more dynamic and consolidated view of the threats. CEM’s automated functionality will assess and respond to threats and capture all valuable information for critical event reporting. This will contribute to greater operational efficiency, lower costs, and better situational awareness and visibility of responses across the enterprise.
When it comes to the changing threat landscape, critical event management can provide valuable security and assurance to organizations. Having such a plan in place will facilitate a faster resumption of operations and avoid monetary losses and damage to reputation while supporting businesses in their move towards a proactive approach to crisis prevention. Ultimately, the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the pressure organizations are under to protect against the next threat or the next global shock. In reality, they have to be prepared for anything and CEM will allow them to do just that. Being able to assess the risk they face will help them secure their digital and physical assets and protect their employees and customers from disasters.