Tips to Find a Proficient Cyber Security Consultant

Should you hire a cyber security consultant?

If your business is online, it is vulnerable to all kinds of cyber threats. To ensure it is stable and running smoothly, you might want to focus on your products, services, sales, finances, clients and employees. At the same time, consider the skills of cyber criminals posing as threats to the business.

Over the years, massive breaches made headlines in leading dailies. Back in 2013, Symantec reported that 31% attacks targeted businesses with less than 250 employees, which were three times more than in 2012. In addition, the cost of such breaches could rapidly be in thousands, if not millions.

Hence, all business owners, big or small, must consider IT consulting services. Having an IT person is not enough to maintain a wide range of security products and carry out services. Hiring a professional is the only solution.

Who are Cyber Security Consultants?

Before hiring a cyber security consultant, you should know about the position.

Small businesses, for instance, may not possess the resources for staffing fully equipped IT consultants or a department to manage the network security. Hence, they have to rely on an expert willing to play the role.

The roles of a cyber security consultant include the following:

  • Determine an effective way to secure endpoints and networks from an outside attack
  • Respond to breaches and emergencies
  • Assess security risks by conducting risk analysis, vulnerability tests and staff interviews for readiness
  • Research and prepare for security threats
  • Report to the management
  • Prepare cost estimates for security expenses

Additional skills include in-depth knowledge of secure coding practices, intrusion detection and prevention protocol, firewall protocols, SQL and security frameworks.

Ideally, a candidate who has already worked in a small business setup or worked with a big company is perfect for a small environment.

Where to Find the Right Talent

As there is a scarcity of talent pool with high demand, you would have to work actively and search for talented consultants.

Usually, inexperienced candidates and freshers apply for such open positions. However, small businesses require candidates with hands-on experience and a proactive approach in the field. It is a competitive industry and there is a steady demand for qualified and skilled security experts.

Search talent from training courses, public events and universities. Make connections with the local IT universities to get a pass to career fairs. You may also find students with enough experience.

Questions to Ask Prospect Candidates

Once you have narrowed down some candidates, interview them. Ask the following questions:

  • Describe your role as a cyber security consultant.
  • What is your experience in this field with similar or other business? What are the results?
  • Have you dealt with a practical cyber attack or an incident? How did you handle the situation?
  • Is there a simple solution to cyber security? If yes, what is it?
  • What are your plans to keep everyone in an organisation smart enough to handle cyber threats?
  • How would you build the team to become individual cyber-defenders?

If you are satisfied with the answers, you can hire the candidate or consider IT consulting services.

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