What is the true cost of a data breach? According to GovFlex, a data breach costs US small businesses approximately $50,000 to $80,000 on average. This might seem like a relatively low expense until you understand that it is also associated with the end of most firms. Sixty percent of those firms that experienced a major data breach were out of business in six months. And for government contractors, the stakes might be even higher. According to IBM and Security Intelligence, the average cost of a data breach for government agencies is over 2 million dollars. As custodians of sensitive data and providers of critical services to government agencies, government contractors must prioritize cybersecurity. In this blog, we will explore the reasons why these companies need to focus on cybersecurity and discuss the key steps they should take to safeguard their operations and the interests of their clients.
Six Reasons Why Government Contractors Need to Prioritize Cybersecurity
1. Protecting Sensitive Government Data
Government contractors often handle large volumes of sensitive data, ranging from classified information to personally identifiable information (PII) of citizens. This data must be protected from unauthorized access, theft, or misuse. Cybersecurity measures such as encryption, access controls, and secure data storage are vital in preserving the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of this information. By implementing stringent security protocols, government contractors can maintain the trust and confidence of their government clients.
2. Mitigating Cyber Threats and Attacks
The threat landscape for cyber attacks is constantly evolving, with adversaries becoming increasingly sophisticated and persistent. Government contractors are prime targets due to their involvement in high-value contracts and access to sensitive information. Cyber attacks can result in service disruptions, data breaches, financial losses, and reputational damage. By focusing on cybersecurity, government contractors can implement proactive measures to detect, prevent, and respond to cyber threats effectively, minimizing the impact of potential attacks.
3. Compliance with Government Regulations
Government contractors operate within a regulatory environment that demands adherence to specific cybersecurity standards. Agencies like the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) impose rigorous requirements on contractors to ensure the protection of government data and systems. By prioritizing cybersecurity, contractors can meet regulatory obligations, maintain compliance, and fulfill the prerequisites for bidding on and securing government contracts.
4. Preserving Business Continuity
A successful cyber attack can disrupt operations, hamper service delivery, and compromise the ability of government contractors to meet contractual obligations. Such disruptions can have severe financial and operational consequences. By focusing on cybersecurity, contractors can develop robust incident response plans, implement disaster recovery measures, and establish resilient systems. These proactive steps help ensure business continuity, minimize downtime, and maintain the trust of their government clients.
5. Building Trust and Competitive Advantage
Government agencies rely on contractors to deliver critical services, and trust is a fundamental component of this relationship. By demonstrating a strong commitment to cybersecurity, contractors can differentiate themselves in the market and build trust with government clients. Clients value contractors that prioritize cybersecurity as it reduces the risk of data breaches and demonstrates a proactive approach to protecting sensitive information. Strong cybersecurity practices can also serve as a competitive advantage, helping contractors win and retain lucrative contracts.
6. Safeguarding National Security
Government contractors are entrusted with tasks related to national security, defense, and critical infrastructure. Any breach or compromise within their systems can have far-reaching consequences, potentially putting the nation’s security at risk. By prioritizing cybersecurity, government contractors demonstrate their commitment to protecting classified information, critical systems, and sensitive data. Robust security measures are essential to safeguarding national interests and ensuring the resilience of government operations.
.. And Speaking of Government Contracting
By following these tips, you can help safeguard your government contracting business. At Blu Omega, we have an extensive history of supporting federal & commercial customers to grow and become more efficient. Our scope of services includes post-award surge support, proposal support, and key personnel staffing. For more information and to see how Blu Omega can help your GovCon grow, contact Blu Omega here.