What would your business be able to do if security risks were no longer a concern?

What sort of products would you build for your customers? What types of experiences could you enable for your employees to be more effective? What would you change to power your business forward?

As the general manager for IBM Security, I speak with security leaders every day, and I know the worries and concerns they speak of will never go away. But if there was a way to proactively manage security so that we could grow our business with less worry about cyber risk, I’d jump at it.

There is an approach that we can use to achieve business growth without limits. That approach is zero trust.

A Strict Approach to Cybersecurity Offers Business Flexibility

The philosophy behind zero trust is simple, if a bit alarming at first. You need to start with the assumption that your organization is compromised and continually validate the connections between every user, device, application and dataset. This approach to security assures that each connection meets secure conditions for use.

This method paves the way for businesses to be proactive in their cybersecurity efforts. Using a zero trust approach makes it possible to support a workforce that can securely connect and work from anywhere, from any device, accessing data on any infrastructure. We can deliver dynamic and frictionless customer experiences founded on privacy and security or confidently migrate operations to the cloud by integrating security controls and demonstrating cross-domain visibility.

With zero trust, we can reduce potential business disruption with a faster, more automated approach to detecting and responding to threats.

Now let’s talk about how we get there. As simple as it is to understand the concept of zero trust, putting it into action is what really counts.

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An Open Approach to Security Is Key to Zero Trust Success

Not one of the chief information security officers (CISOs) I’ve spoken with is starting from scratch. They have a portfolio of security products and services that are functioning as designed, each solving an individual problem. While some of them are applying zero trust principles to a subset of their program, many are struggling to use these strategies broadly to solve the security issues that are plaguing the larger organization.

In order to secure the whole enterprise with zero trust — to put security into practice to fuel growth without limits — we need to think differently about how we develop, sell and use cybersecurity. We need to meet the zero trust framework where we are now and grow with the guidance of best practices. We need to learn from the ways that succeed in business in general. We need to be open, collaborative and connected.

Adopting an open approach to security is the only way we’ll be able to successfully apply zero trust in the way it was intended — with a connected and continuous approach to security that supports business wherever and however it happens.

Join us later this month as we approach the ‘how’ of zero trust and open security at the Think 2021 digital conference. Let us show you how to take action for your organization, as we talk with customers and partners about how they implement zero trust. We’ll walk you through scenarios to show how you can do it too. You’ll also hear how we are putting open security into practice with our partners and development efforts.

Later on in the month, you can join us at the RSA Conference, where I’ll be speaking with one of our customers about how they are implementing zero trust, including the best way to start and demonstrate success.

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