What is Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)?

Enterprise risk management (ERM) is the practice of identifying, evaluating, and managing the various risks that an organization may face. This may include financial, safety, security, and other risks. ERM is a holistic practice that spans the entire organization, providing centralized visibility and management of risks to the company and its operations.

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What is Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)?

The Need for Enterprise Risk Management (ERM)

If an organization does not identify and manage its risks, it can incur significant costs and damage as a result. This is especially true with regard to security risks. As cyberattacks become more prevalent and expensive, the potential price tag of a cybersecurity incident continues to grow. A successful ransomware infection or data breach can carry costs in the millions of dollars — the average cost of a data breach is $4.62 million —  and cause significant harm to an organization’s customers, reputation, and productivity.

ERM helps to reduce these costs by enabling an organization to take proactive steps to manage and mitigate these risks. For example, deploying anti-ransomware solutions or protection against common threats — such as phishing attacks — reduces the probability of a successful attack.

Elements of an ERM Framework

An enterprise risk management framework should lay out processes, procedures, and tools for managing risk at the enterprise level. Some key elements of a corporate  framework include:

  • Holistic Risk Management: Risk management should be performed at an organizational level rather than by individual business units. This provides the comprehensive visibility necessary to effectively and consistently manage risk across the organization.
  • Tailored Risk Assessment: While risk should be managed holistically, the risks to different departments and business units can differ significantly. An ERM framework should use context to tailor risk management activities to different business units.

Benefits of ERM

ERM is geared towards identifying and managing an organization’s risks at the enterprise level. This provides significant benefits when compared to siloed, department-level risk management strategies, including:

  • Optimized Risk Management: With ERM, risk is monitored and managed centrally within the organization. This provides more comprehensive and cohesive visibility into enterprise risk and a more efficient allocation of resources to manage risk.
  • Greater Effectiveness: With ERM, risk management is performed with the full resources of the organization. This can provide superior solutions to those that otherwise would only have a particular department’s resources.
  • Subject Matter Expertise: ERM allows the organization to make use of subject matter expertise from across the organization when managing various risks. For example, the move to cloud computing, which may be used by various departments, creates security risks that may require the knowledge and expertise of IT and security staff to effectively protect against sensitive data leakage, security misconfigurations, and other threats.

What to Look For in an ERM Solution

An enterprise risk management solution should support an organization’s risk management efforts and include features such as:

  • Usability: ERM is a company-wide effort, and various stakeholders may need to enter data and extract analytics from the system. A user-friendly system is vital to an effective ERM strategy.
  • Integration: An enterprise risk management solution needs to have full visibility into the various risks that an organization faces. To accomplish this, solutions should offer API-based integration options to simplify and streamline data collection.
  • Regulatory Alignment: Many regulations mandate that organizations manage certain risks, such as the requirements for the protection of customers’ personal data in the GDPR, PCI-DSS, and similar regulations. An ERM solution should be designed to simplify and streamline the data collection and reporting processes for regulatory compliance.

The Importance of Integrating ERM and Cybersecurity with Infinity ELA

A corporate ERM solution provides visibility into the various risks that an organization faces. However, to be effective, it needs to have complete visibility into an organization’s operations and how they contribute to these risks.

One of the biggest risks that many enterprises face is security. Cyberattacks are growing increasingly common and costly, and a successful intrusion may be capable of driving an organization out of business.

Attempting to monitor and manage cybersecurity risks with an array of standalone security solutions in an ineffective and unscalable solution. Effective cybersecurity risk management requires a consolidated security architecture that provides comprehensive security visibility, zero-trust security, and threat prevention.

In addition to simplifying ERM, a consolidated security architecture provides significant benefits, including:

  • Competitive advantage due to secured infrastructure and processes
  • Elimination of downtime caused by cyberattacks targeting IT systems
  • Operational continuity guaranteed by built-in, automated mitigation steps for common attacks

Check Point Infinity Enterprise License Agreement (ELA) provides access to a comprehensive, consolidated security architecture under a single, enterprise license agreement. To learn more about the security risks that your organization faces, take Check Point’s free Security Checkup. Then, request a consultation about Infinity ELA to learn how it can help your organization to more effectively manage its cybersecurity risk.

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