Can payments be open to innovation and cybersecurity?


It is a great time in payments to work. New technologies and business models open new markets and potential opportunities. The excitement can be dampened by concerns that the venture’s efforts in grabbing compelling business opportunities could expose the firm to unnecessary cybersecurity risks. Imagine if cyber and business teams were fully aligned and committed to safe innovation.

Let’s examine the context in which each team evaluates new tools and payment technologies. Both sides may feel under pressure and may not see the positive aspects of things.

The payment environment

  • Innovative, customer-focused payment solutions are the driving force behind many technology innovators in the industry. To maintain or grow their market share, all payments players need to offer the best options for their customers.

    Innovation is a constant process. These solutions can cause tension between members of teams.

Securing Your Business in the Cybersecurity Environment

  • Alarming trends have been observed in the rise of geopolitical tensions. This has led to an increase in cyberattacks, data breaches and other security issues. It’s difficult to keep up the pace with all the scams, frauds and viruses that are being created by highly-resourced hackers.
  • Cybercriminals are getting more daring and sophisticated in their attacks on all things, from hospitals to government departments. Cybersecurity is now an integral part society’s functioning. It also affects our financial systems in an open environment.
  • The Great Resignation is affecting all types of businesses. It is limiting cybersecurity resources. Cyber experts are in high demand. It is difficult for understaffed teams to respond quickly and decisively to attacks.
  • New products can pose risks to businesses. These new products may not have been detected. Unexpected attacks and new types of attacks can catch cybersecurity teams unaware of the launch of new technology.
  • Cloud-based solutions make traditional methods of responding and protecting against incidents less effective. As innovation accelerates, it is more important to develop innovative solutions quickly.

The dilemma

Business leaders must weigh the cybersecurity risks of releasing new products into the payment space with the risk of losing customers or falling behind their competition.

Cyber risk management is well-known, but leaders often struggle to quantify the risks and evaluate the benefits. Cyber risk is often quantified at one time, such as prior to product launches. It does not evolve over time.

This has created a situation in which cybersecurity leaders and business leaders frequently clash. Business leaders may perceive cybersecurity as a barrier that prevents them from improving their payment products. Cyber leaders may believe that business units don’t understand the consequences of following the latest trends, and are blind to the potential risks.

What is the solution?

Imagine the cybersecurity team as a key partner in innovation and an ally on the path to modernization. The cyber team could use their best agile thinking to work with the product team in the development and launch of new payment products. Every team should have a “how might it be done” mentality, and not a tug-of-war mentality.

This keeps the business team from getting too involved with technology and products that could be potentially dangerous. This allows them to understand the risk even after investing a lot of time and money. This allows the cyber team to have more time to review the plans, assess the risks and find ways to reduce them. This prevents negative reactions from being rushed to any product.

The cyber team can use continuous cyber risk quantification assessments to price risk. Security can be viewed as a competitive advantage rather than a problem. Customers are always concerned about fraud and cyber attacks, and are cautious of new technologies that are not tested for security. Customers will prefer safer products and services than others. To take advantage of this advantage, companies can highlight security features in their products.

Cyber and business teams must work together to assess the risks of slowing down product development and scaling back potentially hazardous products. These costs must be weighed against the benefits of creating products that are safe to design. If customers feel secure in their products and can mitigate risk, they will be more loyal.