Jeff Yastine Blog | Cybersecurity Investing: The “Let ‘Em In” Strategy | Talkmarkets
Editor, Total Wealth Insider
Contributor's Links: Banyan Hill Publishing

Jeff “JL” Yastine is the editor of Total Wealth Insider. He first joined Banyan Hill Publishing as editorial director in 2015, bringing with him more than two decades of experience as a stock market investor and financial journalist at the center of financial world ... more

Cybersecurity Investing: The “Let ‘Em In” Strategy

Date: Wednesday, November 22, 2017 8:40 AM EST

It happened again — another giant-sized hack.

Except this time, it’s not a retailer or a credit reporting agency (or a movie studio), as we’ve seen in the last few years.

And the hackers weren’t out to steal credit card numbers, Social Security numbers or unreleased theater films. Instead, their goal was more like a digital bank heist — $31 million worth of cryptocurrency reportedly stolen from Tether, a company that helps bitcoin traders convert U.S. dollars into crypto assets and vice versa.

The theft points out why cybersecurity is so hard: It’s next to impossible to prevent an attack by a skilled hacker (or a team of them).

Instead, more big companies are employing what I like to call the “Let ‘em in” strategy.

You know … from the lyrics of that old (OK, ancient) Paul McCartney & Wings song where he keeps singing: “Open the door, let ‘em in?”

And that’s the point

In Cybersecurity, Monitor and Mitigate

Cybersecurity attacks are impossible to prevent. As Harvard Business Review put it recently: “If the end game is preventing something bad from happening, companies typically waste time and money on futile attempts to build an impenetrable wall of systems.”

So why not focus on the “Let ‘em in” strategy?

“Let ‘em in” — where you can monitor and mitigate the threat of hackers.

Don’t think “fortress” — think “modern apartment building” (without a doorman).

It might be easy enough for an intruder on the street to fool a resident into “buzzing” him into the lobby. Once inside, though, he’s tracked on security cameras. He’ll need a coded key to access the elevator. And in order to steal something, he’ll need a way — brute force, trickery or a purloined key — to open the front door of someone’s residence.

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